Delta Air Lines CEO Calls Summer Flight Disruptions ‘Unacceptable’

Delta Air Lines CEO Calls Summer Flight Disruptions ‘Unacceptable’

Delta Air Lines plane. (photo via Delta Air Lines Media)

Delta Air Lines CEO Ed Bastian sent an email to SkyMiles members on Thursday apologizing for travel disruptions so far this summer and promised to work towards returning a sense of normalcy to the flight process.

Bastian thanked the company’s over 75,000 employees worldwide for working to avoid delays and cancellations, despite the record level of demand and staffing shortages caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

In total, Delta flew over 96 percent of its scheduled departures in June, with more than 80 percent of the flights landing within 14 minutes of their scheduled arrival time. The airline is also investing in digital tools to help travelers conveniently manage travel if plans change.

“If you’ve encountered delays and cancellations recently, I apologize,” Bastian said. “We’ve spent years establishing Delta as the industry leader in reliability, and though the majority of our flights continue to operate on time, this level of disruption and uncertainty is unacceptable.”

“You choose to invest your time, resources and loyalty with Delta and you’ve rightly come to expect a world-class experience on every flight, and that includes the best reliability in the business,” Bastian continued.

To combat the issues facing the carrier, Delta has adjusted its summer schedule, worked with employees to offer more buffer room when flight delays occur and issued travel waivers to allow customers to easily rebook travel if necessary.

In addition, the airline is working with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) on improving processes for air traffic management, allowing earlier boarding to help ensure on-time departures and accelerating the hiring process for key positions.

Delta also activated its Peach Corps program to bring in hundreds of employees from the corporate offices to work check-in, baggage drop-off, airport wayfinding and more at airports in Atlanta and New York.

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