Sao Paulo, Brazil, June 26, 2012 – Delta Air Lines (NYSE: DAL) announced today the celebration of its 15th Anniversary of uninterrupted service in Brazil, a key market in the airline's growing Latin American network. On June 17, 1997, Delta Air Lines began serving Brazil with one daily flight between Atlanta and Sao Paulo and today offers 35 weekly nonstop flights to Sao Paulo, Brasilia and Rio de Janeiro. During the past five years, Delta Air Lines has grown its capacity in the market by 56 percent, and increased the number of passenger flown by 62 percent.
"Brazil is extremely important for Delta Air Lines and our new alliance with GOL is already yielding results for both airlines. Our sustained growth in the past five years proves that our actions are on target. We have made great strides towards becoming the best U.S. airline in Latin America," said Ed Bastian, president of Delta Air Lines. "We are proud to celebrate 15 years of service and to reinforce our position in the market which is fundamentalto our Latin American strategy."
Delta Air Lines' alliance with GOL Linhas Aereas Inteligentes, which accounts for approximately 40 percent of Brazil's domestic market share, is a critical part of Delta Air Lines' continued expansion in the country and the region. The alliance was announced in December 2011 with an investment of $100 million, which gave Delta Air Lines a seat on the GOL board of directors. The Delta-GOL partnership is evolving as both companies are committed to delivering industry-leading customer benefits. By August customers will be able to make use of joint ticketing offices for GOL and Delta Air Lines in Brasilia and Sao Paulo.
"Through our partnership with GOL we offer more access to interior Brazil points than any other U.S. airline. Delta customers can travel to 21 cities through Brazil covering 99 percent of the demand points of traffic between Brazil and the U.S.," said Nicolas Ferri, Delta's vice-president, Latin America and the Caribbean. "When we compare the first five months of 2012 with the same period last year, we see a 28 percent increase in the number of GOL passengers connecting to Delta flights. We also have seen an impressive 38 percent increase in the number of Delta passengers flying GOL to cities of the interior of Brazil for the same period."
Since the beginning of 2012 Delta has hired 90 employees in Brazil and now has a workforce of 168 employees— a 115 percent increase over 2011.
"Delta Air Lines was recently recognized by PC World magazine as the Top Tech Friendly airline in the U.S., proof of our desire to continue leading this trend is the launch of our Twitter channel in Portuguese @DeltaAjuda where we will offer live assistance to customers before, during and after their flights," said Ferri. "We have also launched our Facebook page in Portuguese just a week ago and we will continue to look for digital channels to better relate to our customers and serve them."
Delta's Marks its 15 Years in Brazil
Delta Air Lines continues its investment in remodeling its fleet to include the popular flat bed seats in the Business Elite cabin. Currently all flights on the route from New York's John F. Kennedy airport and Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jackson International airport to Sao Paulo already have flat bed seats. By 2013 the flat bed seats will be offered on all Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro flights. Furthermore, Delta incorporated early this year a new menu for its Business Elite cabin designed by renowned chef Michelle Bernstein featuring South American inspired dishes and paired with Chilean wines selected by Master Sommelier Andrea Robinson.
About Delta Air Lines
Delta Air Lines is working towards becoming the best U.S. carrier in Latin America and the Caribbean. As part of that goal Delta has established a long-term exclusive alliance with GOL Linhas Aereas Inteligentes investing more than US $100 million in GOL. Likewise, Delta has invested more than US $65 million in Aeroméxico as part of a long-term exclusive commercial alliance and entered a code sharing agreement with Aerolíneas Argentinas solidifying its footprint in Latin America. Delta provides service in Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport Delta reaching out to 32 countries and 54 destinations in the region offering more than 1,000 weekly flights between Latin America and the U.S. Spanish speaking Delta customers can receive assistance in Portuguese and Spanish through its Twitter channels @DeltaAjuda and @DeltaAssist_ES providing real-time, on-the-go travel assistance from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. EST.
Delta Air Lines serves more than 160 million customers each year. During the past year, Delta was named domestic "Airline of the Year" by the readers of Travel Weekly magazine, was named the "Top Tech-Friendly U.S. Airline" by PCWorld magazine for its innovation in technology and won the Business Travel News Annual Airline Survey. With an industry-leading global network, Delta and the Delta Connection carriers offer service to nearly 350 destinations in 65 countries on six continents. Headquartered in Atlanta, Delta employs 80,000 employees worldwide and operates a mainline fleet of more than 700 aircraft. A founding member of the SkyTeam global alliance, Delta participates in the industry's leading trans-Atlantic joint venture with Air France-KLM and Alitalia. Including its worldwide alliance partners, Delta offers customers more than 13,000 daily flights, with hubs in Amsterdam, Atlanta, Cincinnati, Detroit, Memphis, Minneapolis-St. Paul, New York-LaGuardia, New York-JFK, Paris-Charles de Gaulle, Salt Lake City and Tokyo-Narita. The airline's service includes the SkyMiles frequent flier program, a world-class airline loyalty program; the award-winning BusinessElite service; and more than 50 Delta Sky Clubs in airports worldwide. Delta is investing more than $3 billion through 2013 in airport facilities and global products, services and technology to enhance the customer experience in the air and on the ground. Customers can check in for flights, print boarding passes, check bags and review flight status at delta.com.