Having a Delta credit card gets you priority boarding every time you fly the airline — here’s what you need to know

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Each of Delta’s three main credit cards – the Gold Delta SkyMiles, Platinum Delta SkyMiles, and Delta Reserve cards – offer a few useful travel benefits for cardholders when they fly Delta. One of those benefits is priority boarding for the cardholder and any travel companions on the same reservation.

At a time when seemingly everyone tries to avoid checking bags – even if they can get checked-bag fees waived – overhead bin space for carry-on bags is in hot demand. By boarding early, you can avoid having to compete for space and store your bag close to your seat. Plus, you’ll have extra time to settle in for your flight.

Taking advantage of Delta’s priority-boarding benefit is easy.

When you apply for a Delta American Express card, you’re prompted to enter your Delta SkyMiles number. From that point on, as long as the card is open, the benefits are tied to your SkyMiles account.

After that, every time you check in for a flight, your boarding pass will show boarding zone 1. Zone 1 is after most Delta elite frequent flyers and extra-legroom passengers, but it is usually within the first half of passengers to board. The same will apply for anyone else on the same reservation with you.

The key is making sure that you’re on the same reservation. If you book separately, your travel companions won’t have access to priority boarding or free checked bags unless they have their own Delta credit card (or hold the elite Medallion status).

Just remember to log in to your Delta account when booking tickets. If you’re booking through a third-party portal, such as Expedia, enter your Delta number during the booking process.

If, for some reason, your boarding pass shows a lower zone, just show your card to the check-in agent, who should be able to fix it.

Learn more: 8 lucrative credit-card deals new cardholders can get this month – including up to 75,000 Delta SkyMiles

If you’re thinking about getting a Delta AmEx credit card, now is the perfect time. All three cards are offering limited-time welcome bonuses that match the highest-ever publicly offered bonuses.

The Gold Delta SkyMiles card offers 60,000 Delta SkyMiles when you spend $2,000 in the first three months. The Platinum version is offering 75,000 SkyMiles and 5,000 Medallion Qualification Miles when you spend $3,000 in the first three months. Delta’s premium card, the Delta Reserve, is also offering 75,000 miles and 5,000 Medallion Qualification Miles, although you’ll need to spend $5,000 in the first three months.

$95 annual fee: Click here to learn more about the Gold Delta SkyMiles card from Business Insider’s partner: The Points Guy.

$195 annual fee: Click here to learn more about the Platinum Delta SkyMiles card from Business Insider’s partner: The Points Guy.

$450 annual fee: Click here to learn more about the Delta Reserve card from Business Insider’s partner: The Points Guy.