Delta Blocking Middle Seats through January 6th, 2021

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Delta has announced they’ll be extending its seating capacity for passengers in all cabins including Main Cabin, Comfort + and First Class onboard both mainline and connection carriers through January 6, 2021.

Delta previously was blocking middle seats on all flights through September 30th, so this latest announcement extends for an additional three months.

One change to note is that Delta is increasing its capacity onboard its Delta One cabins from 50% to 75% with the argument that its premium cabins are in a 1x2x1 configuration so even with the increase in capacity each passenger will still be separated by an aisle on its widebody aircraft.

Per Delta,

Blocking Middle Seats for More Space

Through Jan. 6, 2021, Delta will block the selection of middle seats in Delta Premium Select, Delta Comfort+ and Main Cabin via the Fly Delta app or online.

  • For customers in parties of 1-2: Middle seats will be blocked for safety.
  • For customers in parties of 3 or more: Middle seats will appear as available for booking, to allow families and travel companions to select seats together.

This functionality helps us maintain our pledge to give customers more space on board while offering flexibility with their seat choices.

We’re also continuing to ensure our flights are not filled to capacity. For travel through at least Oct. 31, customers can expect that Delta will:

  • Limit the number of customers on board all aircraft – with or without middle seats.
  • Limit the First Class cabin to half capacity to further ensure more space between customers.*
  • Block one aisle of seats on aircraft without middle seats.

Delta is the first major US airline to announce blocked middle seats into 2021, however I suspect we’ll see others follow. When given a choice on airline to fly during these times, I’d highly recommend one that blocks middle seats. Having flown Delta several times since March, I can say that I felt safe onboard and appreciate all the measures they’re taking to ensure safety.

With this announcement, Delta will be selling its Delta One cabin on widebody aircraft to capacity, so don’t expect to have a seat empty next to you in Delta One. Delta’s argument is that this cabin allows for more space and privacy already, they don’t feel they need to block seats anymore.

What are your thoughts on Delta continuing to block middle seats onboard its aircraft through the end of January? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below.

Editorial Note: Opinions, analyses, reviews or suggestions expressed on this site are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed.

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  1. The numbers aren’t going down. I think everybody might continue to extend everything when deadlines approach, indefinitely.
    That means no travel to Europe, masks everywhere, no lounges open or just crap available when they are, etc.
    Figure: at 40K new infections daily (reported) and assuming that 60% of people either won’t feel the effects of COVID-19 or if they do won’t get tested, that leaves 3200 days at 40K daily for the remaining 40% to ‘present’ with symptoms and be confirmed COVID-positive.
    That’s 10 years.

  2. Not quite 10 years…. but there are a few other considerations…
    Soon though, we may start hearing stories of people who had COVID once before, got treated, recovered, and then got it again and ended up hospitalized yet again. Other nascent threads in the media include ‘long-term’ or ‘permanent’ effects of a single infection, how it can (in some rare cases, but this is never emphasized) ‘weaken the lung function and/or heart muscle’, complete with sound bytes from solemn-looking heavily credentialed older doctor-ly looking person.
    Here in my second home, this government has vowed to carry on with its draconian ‘stop-the-virus’ program and has been lauded internationally as ‘getting the virus response right’ in the media, which of course has strengthened the hand of those who came up with it, dangerously too as this little country has an authoritarian streak. However, at just 10 or so infections a day, and no sign of ever going to zero, and no hope of the virus ever *not* topping the news, using the extrapolation above, the current plan must stretch into centuries, not decades. In other words, it’s permanent here until otherwise. Sustainable? Don’t forget, the youngsters today who are healthy and ‘immune’ for that reason are tomorrow’s ‘at-risk population’ and come equipped with a good dose of fear and an equal dose of acquiescence.
    We’ll see…

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