Delta CEO apologizes for delays, cancellations amid strong travel demand

“If you've encountered delays and cancellations recently, I apologize,” Delta CEO Ed Bastian said.

Image of Ed Bastian at an event.
Bastian: 'Things won't change overnight, but we're on a path towards a steady recovery.' (Photo credit: Getty Images).

ATLANTA: Delta CEO Ed Bastian apologized to SkyMiles members in a letter on Thursday for a flurry of cancellations and delays. 

“If you've encountered delays and cancellations recently, I apologize,” he said. “We've spent years establishing Delta as the industry leader in reliability, and though the majority of our flights continue to operate on time, this level of disruption and uncertainty is unacceptable.”

Delta canceled 2% of its flights, or 89, on Thursday, according to FlightAware.com. It also delayed 9%, or 283. 

“Things won't change overnight, but we're on a path towards a steady recovery,” Bastian said. “Steps we've taken include offering more flexibility for your travel plans and adjusting our summer schedule so that when challenges do occur, we can bounce back faster.”

Bastian added that the airline has drastically increased hiring efforts, bringing on about 15,000 employees since the start of 2021. 

A Delta representative could not be reached for additional comment. 

Many major airlines are feeling the pressure during the summer holiday season. On Sunday, more than 800 flights across the country were canceled, according to NBC News. And with a holiday weekend on the horizon, more airline travel chaos is all but guaranteed. 

In April, after the COVID-19 mask mandate for public transportation was overturned, Delta issued a statement, but quickly revised it after the wording received negative attention on social media.


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