ATLANTA and EAGAN, MINN., April 29, 2008 – More than 100,000 employees and retirees of Delta Air Lines (NYSE: DAL) and Northwest Airlines (NYSE: NWA) will gain reciprocal access to both airlines’ worldwide route systems for free, standby travel, effective May 6.  The enhanced program will allow Delta and Northwest employees and their families to fly for free to more than 390 worldwide destinations in 67 countries.
“Non-revenue travel privileges continue to be one of the most popular aspects of airline employees’ total compensation and benefits,” said Delta CEO Richard Anderson.  “With great coordination and partnership between the airlines, we are offering an immediate benefit by extending free travel on each other’s flights – something that has never been offered this quickly following the announcement of a major airline merger.”

Northwest Airlines CEO Doug Steenland added, "We wanted our own employees to be the first to benefit from the Northwest/Delta combination with a travel benefit that is unique in the airline industry. Having immediate access to the combined network will open up a whole new world of travel opportunities, giving both airlines' employees a sample of the benefits our customers will also experience in the new global airline."

The addition of enhanced travel privileges is part of previously announced merger-related commitments to Delta and Northwest employees, including:

  • A significant equity stake for U.S.-based employees of both companies upon closing of the transaction (international employees will receive a cash payment in lieu of equity);
  • Pay increases that will continue the progression toward industry-standard pay; 
  • No involuntary furloughs of frontline employees as a result of the merger;
  • Seniority protection through a fair and equitable seniority integration process; and
  • The protection of the existing pension plans for both companies’ employees.

The enhanced travel program is an early step in the combination of Delta and Northwest that can be achieved in advance of completion of the regulatory review process.  Delta and Northwest expect to complete the regulatory review process by the end of 2008.

For more information on the Delta-Northwest merger, visit

Northwest Airlines is one of the world’s largest airlines with hubs at Detroit, Minneapolis/St. Paul, Memphis, Tokyo and Amsterdam, and approximately 1,400 daily departures. Northwest is a member of SkyTeam, an airline alliance that offers customers one of the world’s most extensive global networks. Northwest and its travel partners serve more than 1,000 cities in excess of 160 countries on 6 continents.

Delta Air Lines operates service to more worldwide destinations than any airline with Delta and Delta Connection flights to 306 destinations in 58 countries. Delta has added more international capacity than any major U.S. airline during the last two years and is the leader across the Atlantic with flights to 37 trans-Atlantic markets. To Latin America and the Caribbean, Delta offers more than 517 weekly flights to 57 destinations. Delta's marketing alliances also allow customers to earn and redeem SkyMiles on nearly 16,409 flights offered by SkyTeam and other partners. Delta is a founding member of SkyTeam, a global airline alliance that provides customers with extensive worldwide destinations, flights and services. Including its SkyTeam and worldwide codeshare partners, Delta offers flights to 474 worldwide destinations in 104 countries. Customers can check in for flights, print boarding passes and check flight status at