While not the busiest days of the year—July earns that title—travel around Thanksgiving is still demanding, as millions of customers, many of them infrequent flyers, head to visit loved ones for the holidays.
And Delta is ramping up operations across the system to prepare.
Delta will fly more than 3.65 million customers for the week beginning Monday, Nov. 21, and ending Monday, Nov. 28, an overall increase of roughly 3 percent over last year. Airports will see peak travel days today as well as Sunday and Monday of next week.
At major hub airports around the U.S., Delta has increased staffing on peak days to ease the check-in process and expedite customers through the security checkpoints, in cooperation with the TSA.
At the airline’s Operations and Customer Center in Atlanta, meteorologists began forecasting Thanksgiving weather last week. Despite some wintry weather in the Midwest and strong winds in the Northeast, this holiday has proved relatively mild weather-wise. Elsewhere, Delta maintenance technicians are similarly working around the clock to make sure aircraft mechanical issues don’t disrupt holiday travel.
“We’re laser focused on getting people where they need to be during this holiday season,” said Dave Holtz, Delta’s Senior Vice President – Operations and Customer Center. “Our reliability is second to none, and if we say we’re going to fly you from point A to point B, we’re going to do just that, and our teams across the system are fully invested in making sure our customers arrive on time and have a great experience on Delta.”
Much like the airline did this summer, Delta employees will again fan out across the system to assist with security checkpoint throughput, allowing TSA employees to focus on screening customers and baggage. Delta was also the first airline to implement expedited screening lanes, dubbed innovation lanes, which speed the screening process by roughly 30 percent. RFID baggage tracking has also rolled out across much of the system to better keep tabs on checked bags while ground-breaking app for pilots feeds real-time turbulence and weather data to their Microsoft Surface tablets in the flight deck to give customers a smoother ride.
“Delta has implemented a number of innovative tools to our employees to help them make the travel experience better for our customers,” Holtz said.