As Delta works to restart service in line with the lifting of travel restrictions, potential vaccine availability and the gradual return of demand, customers will see more trans-Atlantic and trans-Pacific flights to top business and leisure destinations for the winter 2020-2021 and summer 2021 seasons.
While the airline expects pre-COVID level recovery for international flying to continue to lag U.S. domestic, Delta plans to add over 50 transoceanic flights next summer, compared to the summer 2020 schedule.
Delta will focus its strengths in its core markets and with the support of its partners, offer customers a wide array of onward connections.
“While significant hurdles remain in the global fight against the pandemic, we are ready to connect customers to the people, places, opportunities and experiences they’re longing for,” said Joe Esposito, S.V.P. – Network Planning.
“Customers flying internationally can look forward to a modernized fleet featuring our latest cabin products and a travel experience that prioritizes their health and the health of our employees from check-in to baggage claim.”
As customers consider future travel, whether international or domestic, Delta’s multi-layered approach to their health and safety ensures peace of mind throughout the travel journey. These include, but are not limited to:
· Sanitizing all aircraft with electrostatic spraying before departure and extensive pre-flight disinfection of high-touch points throughout the aircraft interior.
· Using state-of-the-art air circulation systems with HEPA filters that extract more than 99.99 percent of particles, including viruses.
· Blocking all middle seats and limiting the number of customers per flight through Jan. 6, 2021.
· Requiring face masks throughout the airport, in Delta Sky Clubs and on board the aircraft
Delta’s partners have also introduced measures to ensure that customers enjoy a hassle-free, seamless and safe experience from start to finish, with regular updates posted on their websites as service returns.
Delta will operate the adjusted schedule with a more efficient, upgraded fleet of Airbus A350-900s, A330-900neos and refurbished Boeing 767s, following the retirement of its Boeing 777 aircraft by the end of October 2020.
Customers can also enjoy greater flexibility in case their plans change, as Delta has extended its change-fee waiver for new flights purchased through Sept. 30, 2020.
Delta’s schedule remains subject to change due to the evolving nature of COVID-19, customer demand, government travel regulations and federal health guidelines. Specific restart dates may vary for previously suspended routes due to travel restrictions and other operational requirements. Delta will make decisions about resuming additional service on other routes at a later date.
Delta is maintaining its global presence and investment in Seattle (SEA) over the next year, which continues to be a premier gateway for travel to Asia. Continued daily service next year from Sea-Tac to Tokyo-Haneda (HND), Seoul-Incheon (ICN), Beijing (BJS), and Shanghai (PVG) will allow customers to connect further within the region through Delta’s partners, Korean Air and China Eastern.
With the opening of the new international arrivals facility at SEA, Delta will offer an entirely upgraded experience for local and connecting customers with direct or one-stop partner access to over 95 percent of Asia markets. Customers traveling from Seattle to any destination the airline serves in Asia will enjoy an enhanced experience on efficient, next-generation aircraft featuring the award-winning Delta One suites and the popular Delta Premium Select cabin.
At Delta’s partner hub at ICN, customers can connect on Delta’s current flights from Atlanta (ATL), Detroit (DTW) and Seattle to over 70 destinations throughout Asia via partner Korean Air. In April 2021, Delta plans to return to service between Minneapolis (MSP) and Seoul-Incheon.
Delta also remains committed to the Japan market and by summer 2021, will offer service from seven U.S. cities to Haneda, Tokyo’s closest and most convenient airport. Currently, the airline offers up to 14 weekly flights across its Atlanta, Detroit, Los Angeles (LAX) and Seattle gateways. Beginning in December 2020, Delta plans to add up to four-times weekly services between Haneda and Honolulu (HNL).
Between the U.S. and China, Delta is working closely with governments in both countries to increase service in response to high demand. Currently, Delta operates four weekly flights to Shanghai (PVG) from Detroit and Seattle.
Subject to approval, the airline plans to increase service between these destinations. In summer 2021, Delta hopes to operate daily service between Shanghai and Detroit, Seattle and Los Angeles, plus daily service connecting Sea-Tac with Beijing’s new Daxing Airport, subject to government approval.
To Australia, Delta plans to maintain a minimum of thrice-weekly service between Los Angeles and Sydney (SYD) before resuming daily service in 2021. The flight will be operated on Airbus 350-900 aircraft beginning in November, which offers more luxury and comfort with the Delta One suite, Delta Premium Select cabin, large in-flight entertainment screens and more personal space.
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