Skip to main content

Delta enhances popular $1K emergency savings program with more flexibility, quicker access

Delta has enhanced the popular employee emergency savings and financial education program launched earlier this year with a more streamlined education experience and quicker access to the up to $1,000 in rainy-day funds.


Delta has made it easier for eligible employees to earn and access $1,000 in rainy-day savings and streamlined the financial education experience of a program launched earlier this year in partnership with Fidelity Investments and Operation HOPE.

Since its inception in January, more than 33,000 employees have enrolled in the program designed to help Delta people strengthen their financial wellness through online instruction, one-on-one coaching and an emergency savings safety net. The savings program is also a key element in Delta’s larger strategy to invest in the physical, mental and financial wellness of its people.

“There’s nothing more important than the safety and well-being of our people,” said Chief People Officer Joanne Smith. “Physical, mental and emotional well-being programs have long been a part of Delta’s approach, but when we recognized an opportunity to provide better saving tools for our people, we knew we needed to act. The program has been incredibly well received and the employee-driven updates we’ve made is making it even more accessible to more of our hard-working people and their families.”

How It Works

The Emergency Savings Program, available to all U.S. employees below the director level, including pilots, allows participants to choose from three paths based on their personal goals and financial situation followed by individualized coaching sessions from Fidelity Investments or Operation HOPE.

Participating employees receive $750 from Delta deposited directly into the Fidelity Investments emergency savings account opened as part of the program. In addition, Delta matches up to $250 of the employee’s personal contributions to the same account and covers estimated taxes so the employee can access the full $1,000. The Fidelity account comes with a no-cost debit card which gives our people easy, immediate access to their emergency savings.

About the Enhanced Experience

During the second quarter of 2023, Delta updated the program to give greater flexibility to eligible Delta employees.

The changes include:

  • The payout timeline for the $750 incentive has been accelerated so participants can receive payment after completing their first coaching session. Participants who contribute at least $250 through payroll deductions to their emergency savings prior to completing the coaching requirement now have expedited access to both the $750 incentive and $250 company match, allowing people to continue working toward their goals with added peace of mind. Initially, participants were required to complete the entire education and coaching component to receive the incentive.
  • The schedule for education sessions has been revised to allow participants greater flexibility to complete the program at their own pace.
  • Participants can now choose to save toward any goal within Fidelity’s savings platform beyond just for a rainy day.

Employee Wellness Through Education and Savings

Of the more than 33,000 Delta people who have started down the path toward improved financial wellness, more than 13,000 people have completed the entire program and earned the full $1,000 available through the program.

But the program’s true value lies in the life-changing wisdom and personalized coaching that helps people achieve a stronger financial future.

“I’m a better steward over my finances because of this program and Delta Air Lines,” said Delta flight attendant Loretta Day, who takes great pride in the changes she’s made to her spending habits. “I was never one to save. I lived for the day. But I have emergency money now. I’m more educated about my finances, investments and stocks.”

According to a survey of participants from the first quarter of this year, there was a 77% increase in people who felt in control of their financial situation after going through the program. There was also an incredible 140% increase in people who felt in control of their ability to save for a goal other than an emergency.

“From step one, this program gives you this hope that there is a way to get better with your finances,” said Delta airport customer service agent Stephenie Janson. “I am really grateful that Delta is doing this because it’s such a personal thing, and people don’t always feel comfortable reaching out to get help."

Related Topics:
DELTA NEWS ON THE GO. Subscribe and follow.