The final tallies from Delta’s busiest-ever summer operation are in. And they're impressive, to say the least.
The highlights are eight new records never achieved by Delta in its long history. And these final summer statistics put an exclamation point on what has been shaping up since June to be a standout summer.
"Delta’s success is really due to the long-standing culture here that is built around our employees—they are obsessed with serving our customers, and you can certainly see that in these performance numbers," CEO Richard Anderson said recently.
Added Gil West, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer: "For the past several years, we have had a robust strategy aimed at operating the best airline in the world. We do a lot of planning ahead of the summer season, looking at everything from aircraft maintenance, making sure we have enough reserve aircraft on hand and arranging to have maintenance checks before and after the busiest times so our fleet is at its most flexible when we need it."
Here’s a by-the-numbers look at the laundry list of achievements during the summer flight season, which began June 4 and ended this week (Aug. 17):
99.79 percent: A summer schedule mainline "completion factor" record. Previous record was 99.74 percent set last year. Completion factor means days without a canceled flight.
21: The record number of 100 percent mainline Delta system completion factor days in a summer schedule. Previous was 16 days, set last year.
139.2 hours: Longest streak of consecutive hours without a cancellation during a summer schedule, which ran from the evening of June 25 through the afternoon of July 1. That shattered the previous record of 80.3 hours set in June 2014.
3,202 flights: The record number of mainline Delta departures made in a single day, which was set at the end of the grueling schedule: on Aug. 17.
614,159: Number of passengers enplaned in a single day across the system, including Delta Connection flights, set on July 31.
96.72 percent: Record on-time departure performance driven by Delta Technical Operations. The previous high of 96.69 percent was set last year.
99.97 percent: Record maintenance completion factor. Put another way, only 0.03 percent of mainline scheduled operations this summer occurred due to a maintenance reason. Previous high of 99.96 percent was set in 2014.
45 days: Record number of days this summer without any maintenance cancelations. Previous record was 26 in 2014.
“These incredible numbers speak for themselves, but they were only made possible because of Delta people’s determination and competitive spirit. Running a global carrier safely with reliability of this magnitude is an achievement that’s never been done before. Hats off to everyone who made it happen.” - Gil West
These records are particularly noteworthy because of the heavier workload this summer. Consider:
- Total daily mainline flights were up nearly 10 percent compared to last summer, averaging 3,043 daily departures.
- Mainline arrivals exactly on-time or early were up 1.27 percentage points compared to last summer even with the higher volume.
- Delta Connection reliability finished strong. Across flights operated by Delta’s six regional partners during the summer, more than 1,600 fewer cancelations were incurred compared to last year.