Delta/Starbucks Partnership: A Marriage that Every “Travel Blogger” Suddenly Loves

closed white and green starbucks disposable cup
Photo by Engin Akyurt on

Delta airlines has solid service, great cabin configurations, and excellent lounges (some have be subject to overcrowding or you may have seen entitled bloggers (credit card sales people) constantly complain about these lines). While the airline excels in its product offerings, its loyalty program is where they falter. From a consumer perspective, Delta has insanely confusing award redemption rates with variable pricing.

Fast forward to today and as the airline announced a new partnership with Starbucks and suddenly this has become the hottest topic in town. Writers who seldom visit the chain suddenly salivate over this new announcement, but just how important is this announcement?

Does this Partnership have any Value?

I had a great time at the Starbucks Reserve, but I seldom visit Starbucks even as a semi-frequent traveler

This partnership does offer consumers the ability to earn Delta miles on Starbuck’s purchases and the ability to select “stars” as an elite choice benefit. Rather than option to get something useful, redeeming an elite choice benefit for free coffee seems like a pour use. Additionally, unless you’re an intern in an early 2000s movie, how much are you truly spending at Starbucks per week? In my opinion Starbucks is a middle of the pack coffee spot and when given the option, Philz is my preferred spot. Unless you’re spending thousands of dollar per year on coffee, I don’t see this new partnership offering little more than a few hundred extra points per year.

Side Note: By linking your Starbucks and Delta accounts, you can earn 150 stars with Starbucks rewards, good for one free handcrafted beverage or a hot meal. You can also use 50 stars for hot coffee or a pastry so using 50 stars 3 times seems to have better value than one handcrafted drink. Starbucks offers only 1 star per dollar spent so a $5 freebie for $150 of spend isn’t anything special.

Full details of Starbucks Rewards here on their official page

Why is this big news?

flight winter vehicle airport
Photo by Christopher Flaten on

Almost every travel writer or blogger is writing about this topic for some odd reason(i’m guilty as well). While this is breaking news I guess, this is also rather disappointing as Starbucks doesn’t offer an innovative rewards program or unique coffee unless you are visiting a Starbucks Reserve. It’s extremely interesting to see every travel writer in existence discuss this topic like they suddenly believe earning Delta miles is a must. I don’t think this has a major impact at all and is well overblown.

What do you think about this newly launched partnership? Do you think Starbucks x Delta Airlines is Earth shattering or even a valuable partnership at all? Let me know in your thoughts in the comments section.

Leave a Reply