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Friday, February 3, 2023

Delta Air Lines Flights Bookings Surge 450%

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Delta Air Lines expects many of its overseas flights to be completely booked on November 8, when the United States reopens to fully-vaccinated foreign tourists.

Following President Biden’s statement that travel limitations on Europe, the United Kingdom, and a slew of other nations would be eased, the Atlanta-based carrier has seen a 450 percent increase in overseas bookings.

The DL106 from Sao Paulo, which is scheduled to arrive in Atlanta at 9:35 a.m. on Monday, will be the first Delta flight to arrive on American territory following the regulation change.

Since last year, foreign tourists who spent more than 14 days in Brazil have been barred from entering the United States.

Delta’s seat load factor on international flights is projected to stay high in the weeks leading up to Thanksgiving and throughout the holiday season.

“This is the start of a new era for travel and for many people around the world who have not been able to see loved ones for almost two years,” commented Bastian.

“While we have seen many countries reopen their borders to American visitors over the summer, our international customers have not been able to fly with us or visit the U.S. All of that changes now,” he continued.

“We’re grateful to the U.S. government for lifting travel restrictions and are looking forward to reuniting families, friends, and colleagues over the coming days and weeks.”

Delta is resuming international flights to meet demand, with additional routes planned for major European cities such as London, Amsterdam, and Dublin.

Delta will operate 56 daily flights to 39 international destinations from its Atlanta base, while 28 daily flights to 21 international destinations will depart from New York JFK.

Foreign tourists will be allowed to enter the United States under the Biden administration’s new border guidelines if they are completely vaccinated against COVID-19 and have proof of a negative test performed within three days of leaving.

Travelers from Europe, the United Kingdom, and Brazil, as well as China, Iran, India, and South Africa, will profit from the adjustment. The criteria for travelers from most other nations, who could previously enter the US with simply documentation of a negative COVID-19 test, have been tightened.

Travelers should expect long queues at airports in the coming weeks as airlines work out the kinks in the new entry restrictions, according to Bastian.

“It’s going to be a bit sloppy at first,” Bastian warned last week. “I can assure you, there will be lines, unfortunately … but we’ll get it sorted out,” he continued.

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