Delta Air Lines has resumed selling middle seat blocks on Saturday, becoming the last major U.S. air carrier to unblock the middle seats.
Delta’s CEO Ed Bastian announced in late March that the middle seats would be reopened in all cabin classes on every aircraft on May 1. In a statement following the first-quarter earnings call, he said:
“We are aligning with the recommendations of health professionals and government officials who continue to ensure the safe and effective distribution of vaccines and listening to our customers.
“Based on our survey work, 75% of our customers expect to be vaccinated by Memorial Day. With improving demand and vaccine trends, we announced that we’d start selling middle seats May the 1st, providing a powerful tool for improving our financial performance.”
However, this is not a return to normal as the airline still recommends getting vaccinated before travelling and following CDC guidelines.
Delta was the first carrier to block middle seats. The changes made in cleaning protocols by the airline during the pandemic will be permanent.
The TSA has screened more than 1 million people a day since March 11.