The airline says customers travelling or considering travel this summer can “feel confident in a safe experience throughout the journey, from check-in to baggage claim”.
Delta says it has implemented several measures to “encourage extra space and provide peace of mind at the airport”, as well as committed to capping cabin seating at 60 percent in Main Cabin and 50 percent in First Class and blocking middle seats through September 30, 2020.
“Confidence in a safe travel experience is key to a successful recovery,” said Delta’s Senior Vice President – Network Planning, Joe Esposito.
“While we’re rebuilding our network at home and abroad, it’s even more critical that we provide the highest industry standard of safety, space and clean so when our customers are ready to travel, we’re ready for them.”
Delta says customers also have the flexibility to change their plans without a fee for a year, for new flights purchased through June 30, 2020.
Even with the modest growth in demand, Delta’s July expects its schedule will be approximately 70% smaller than the same time last year, including reductions of about 65% for U.S. domestic travel and nearly 75% for international.
As Delta looks ahead to the remainder of the summer travel season, the airline says it will stay focused on adding seat capacity, gradually rebuilding its footprint in local markets and resuming high-demand service suspended due to travel restrictions.
Below is a full region-by-region run-down on the airline’s schedule changes for July.
Delta continues to operate a significantly reduced schedule to the Asia-Pacific region but says it will restart a three times weekly service from Los Angeles to Sydney from July 4.
The airline will also add weekly flights from Atlanta to Seoul-Incheon, complementing existing service from Detroit and Seattle. Delta will continue to operate service to Tokyo-Haneda from Detroit and Seattle.
Subject to government approval, Delta says it plans to operate service to Shanghai (via Incheon) from both Detroit and Seattle. Service from each city will operate once a week.
Delta says it will continue to add more nonstop connectivity between top markets, with a focus on major hubs like Atlanta, Detroit, Minneapolis and Salt Lake City. For customers looking to vacation closer to home this summer, Delta is adding capacity to popular leisure markets like Florida and throughout the West Coast, as well as more transcontinental flying for business travellers.
While seating is capped to ensure more space between customers this summer, we says it will look for opportunities to up-size to a larger aircraft type or add more flying on routes with increasing customer demand.
With non-essential travel guidelines between the U.S. and Canada extended into July, Delta says it will continue to operate a limited schedule for those with critical travel needs. Minneapolis, Detroit and New York-JFK serve as Delta’s main gateways to destinations like Montreal, Toronto, Calgary and Winnipeg. Delta will also continue service to Vancouver from Seattle.
Delta has also temporarily consolidated operations in some markets served by multiple airports, as well as suspended flying to select U.S. cities while customer traffic is significantly reduced.
Delta says it will add a significant amount of capacity back into the Latin region in response to reopened borders and the increased demand for leisure travel. Delta will operate approximately 25% of its schedule compared to last year, a marked improvement from June’s capacity that was reduced by more than 90% due to travel restrictions.
Flight additions are focused on popular vacation spots close to the U.S. for travellers longing for a beach trip, particularly gateways to Cancun and markets like Los Cabos, Montego Bay, Nassau, St. Thomas and Punta Cana.
Delta says it also plans to resume South American connectivity with service from Atlanta to São Paulo, as well as previously suspended routes in Central America and the Caribbean in high demand for summer like Aruba, St. Maarten and Costa Rica.
Pending a lift on border restrictions, Delta says it will resume service to two customer favourite summer destinations – four-times weekly service from New York-JFK to Lisbon and daily service from JFK to Athens. Delta is also expanding its focus on hub-to-hub flying to coastal markets by adding four-times weekly service from Boston to Amsterdam and daily service from Seattle to Amsterdam. We will also restart Detroit to Paris-Charles De Gaulle service.
Connectivity within Africa will also expand, pending government approval, with the resumption of service from New York-JFK to Accra, as well as service from Atlanta to Lagos.
Delta says its schedule remains subject to change due to the evolving nature of COVID-19, customer demand, government travel regulations and federal health guidelines.
According to the airline, specific restart dates in July may vary for previously suspended routes due to travel restrictions and other operational requirements.