My Oversold Delta Flight: $700 AMEX Gift Card, Hotel Voucher & Morning Flight

Good morning everyone.  Last week, I was flying back from Salt Lake City (SLC) to Oakland (OAK) on Delta.  The flight was oversold, so the gate agent was looking for a few volunteers to take a later flight (depart SLC at 10:30pm, land in OAK at 11:30pm) in exchange for a $700 gift card.  Since I didn’t need to get back to OAK right away, I asked the gate agent if I could take a morning flight into OAK (depart SLC at 8:30am, land in OAK at 9:30am – I would then take BART into SF for work) and I also asked for a hotel voucher for the night.  The gate agent said that was possible, so he added me to the volunteer list, and I waited near the gate for all passengers to board.  After all passengers boarded the flight, the gate agent called me up, changed my flight to the new morning flight, printed out a hotel voucher, and showed me the list of gift cards that I was eligible to claim.  I didn’t take a photo of the laminated sheet on the counter, but I believe these were the same gift cards that were offered.  I decided to go with an American Express gift card since that was basically cash to me.

While I stood at the Delta gate, I got this email with instructions on claiming the gift card.  I clicked the Select Item button, then entered my Customer ID and Code, selected the AMEX gift card, entered my shipping address, and submitted the form (I was on my iPhone and forgot to take screenshots of those pages).

A few minutes later, I received a confirmation email with details of the AMEX gift card.  The gift card would be mailed to me.

Before I went to the hotel, I swung by the Delta SkyClub and ate a small dinner (free access since I was flying Delta and I have the American Express Business Platinum Charge Card).  My hotel voucher was for the Four Points SLC and the hotel shuttle showed up just as I was walking outside.  After the short drive to the hotel, I gave the hotel voucher to the front desk agent and I asked if she could add my Marriott Bonvoy number to the reservation.  The agent added my Marriott Bonvoy number, thanked me for my loyalty, and gave me a free breakfast voucher.  A few days after checking out (I didn’t charge anything to the room or get a receipt for my stay), I earned 2,475 Points (worth ~$13).  Sweet!

In the morning, I took the airport shuttle back to the airport, visited the Delta SkyClub again for a small breakfast, and then went to the gate.  The flight to OAK was nice and I had an exit row with ample leg room.  My $93 basic economy Delta flight earned me 465 Delta SkyMiles (worth ~$5) along with the $700 in AMEX gift cards.

Later that day, I received an email from FedEx about an incoming package (AMEX gift card from Delta).

Inside the FedEx envelope, there was a smaller envelope with the AMEX gift cards.  I was expecting a single $700 AMEX gift card, but I guess they only offer $500 gift cards and $100 gift cards.  I ended up getting a $500 AMEX gift card and two $100 AMEX gift cards.

There were also three cardholder agreement letters inside the envelope to go with the AMEX gift cards.


I went to the AMEX Reward Card website and entered the gift card number to view the balance.

Each AMEX gift card showed either a $100 balance or $500 balance, was activated on May 20 (2 days before my original flight) and had the same expiration date of 12/2019.

In exchange for purchasing a $93 basic economy Delta flight, I received 2,475 Marriott Bonvoy Points (worth ~$13), 465 Delta SkyMiles (worth ~$5), and $700 in AMEX gift cards.  That was a pretty good score.  If you have any questions about the Delta bump, please leave a comment below.  Have a great day everyone!

6 thoughts on “My Oversold Delta Flight: $700 AMEX Gift Card, Hotel Voucher & Morning Flight

    1. Grant Post author

      Just luck of the draw, I wasn’t expecting it on this flight but the gate agent kept asking for volunteers and I eventually decided to ask for a morning flight and a hotel voucher to see what would happen.

  1. JJ

    GAs have a lot of flexibility when it comes to bumped passengers – especially after the Dao incident. I definitely prefer the Amex card on Delta, but I took a $1000 voucher on United on Monday to get back to IAH 3 hours later. I would have gotten first class too, but it was booked solid.


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