American Express and Delta turn Boeing 747s into credit cards

In 2018, Delta Air Lines retired The last of its Boeing 747s—the iconic wide-body jets that, from their first flights in 1969—changed the scale and magnitude of commercial air travel forever.

The airline moved most of its decommissioned fleet to boneyards in Arizona, California and New Mexico—save for the ship 6301, the first Delta 747-400 to ever fly, which today includes Immersive. 747 Experience At the Delta Flight Museum in Atlanta. For aircraft enthusiasts still nostalgic for the “queen of the sky,” today the airline, in partnership with American Express, is announcing a limited-edition run of the metal-cut credit card from Delta Ship 6307—the first time ever. Upcycled credit card from a decommissioned 747.

[Image: Delta]

“You think about the journey of this plane, the people who fly it, the stories that were told over 68 million miles,” says John Gantman, SVP and GM of Cobrand Product Management at American Express. “It is an aircraft that delivered military transport to serve men and women. It evacuated Florida during Hurricane Irma. It is a piece of aviation history that our customers will now have the chance to carry in their wallet.

I 6 90761418 747 Credit Card Amex Delta
[Image: Delta]

The limited-edition offering of the Delta SkyMiles Reserve and Reserve Business Card, the latest card in a 25-year partnership between American Express and Delta, was crafted from the metal from the exterior of the aircraft, which was retired in 2017. Shredded aluminum—which, along with carbon composites, titanium, and steel make up a distinctive fuselage and wing spars—was glued onto a stainless steel layer to create a strong and durable card. A typical non-airplane American Express metal card is made of stainless steel and polymers.

I 4 90761418 747 Credit Card Amex Delta
[Image: Delta]

“Taking a 747, which many people are extremely passionate about, and creating a card that met Amex standards for quality, durability, and use was extremely challenging,” says Andrew Gaddis, vice president of global card issuance at American Express. “Aluminum alloys are softer than you might think and airplane metal has a lot of blemishes and scratches easily. In the end, we glued the 747 metal to a more tough stainless-steel layer, to ensure card integrity, shape, and function be able to maintain it.”

Result? A collector-eligible credit card — 25% of which is taken directly from Aviation History’s history — is available until August 3, or until supplies run out. This is the latest special-edition metal card that American Express released this year; In January, the company partnered with Artists Julie Mehretu and Kehinde Wiley On Platinum Card Design.

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