It really is impressive the extent to which Delta thoughtfully invests in their onboard product, while their two biggest competitors do almost nothing. Delta has been leading the way among US carriers when it comes to their international economy experience, and the airline already made improvements to the product back in 2017.
The airline already offers good bedding, amenity kits, and menus in economy. Now Delta is making even more positive changes.
Delta’s latest economy improvements
Starting in November, Delta is rolling out additional services in international economy, including:
- “Welcome aboard” bellini cocktails to start
- Hot towels
- Placemats for meals
- Mix-and-match options for appetizers and entrees
- Desserts will be served separately after the meal
- Pre-landing chocolates will be distributed
Delta has been testing this new concept for a while. Specifically, they’ve been testing this for over a year on their Portland to Tokyo Narita flight, and have seen increased customer satisfaction scores because of this.
These amenities will be available on international flights of over 6.5 hours, plus select shorter flights where Delta One and Delta Premium Select are offered.
In addition to the above, Delta has also provided specialized training to their team of over 3,000 pursers, who are their lead flight attendants on international flights. With the new training, pursers will be making pre-flight introductions in the gate area and will be at the boarding door to greet each passenger.
As Allison Ausband, Delta’s SVP of Inflight Service describes these changes:
“This is about investing in every single customer who chooses Delta, no matter where they sit on the plane. The thoughtful touches we’re investing in throughout the new Main Cabin experience were designed by flight attendants with one goal in mind — delivering an exceptional experience that our customers will rave about and one that our team, the best in the business, is proud to deliver.”
Most interestingly, check out the press release for a video featuring flight attendants talking about what they think of the new service.
Here’s a diagram showing the new service improvements:
Delta gets it
As much as I give Delta a hard time over SkyMiles, they really get it when it comes to their onboard experience, and that’s so refreshing to see.
Delta is willing to invest money in their product where it makes sense, and most importantly, they’re able to do so in a way that engages their employees and makes them proud.
If American and United tried this, flight attendants would be complaining that they’ve being given more work. Delta employees are simply different, and realize the connection between their efforts and their success.
It’s the combination of both Delta management and Delta employees caring about the customer experience that make them so much different than American and United. At American and United, employees would mostly complain about having more work. At Delta, employees are mostly excited when they can offer an improved experience.
Keep up the good work, Delta!