Skift Take

While Delta has among the best on-time performances in the industry and arguably one of the better products, one wonders how the new CEO, who assumed the role only three months ago, will whether the storm.


Airlines in the United States have a bad habit of copying each other, but when Southwest cancelled a bajillion flights because of IT issues late last month, competitors weren’t supposed to follow suit. Sadly, Delta Air Lines fell to its own IT shenanigans this week and the fallout was even greater than Southwest ever could have feared.

Cancellations and delays are still cascading and the disruption so far has been far more widespread and prolonged than at Southwest.

The cancellations and delays started on Monday after what’s now being called a “small fire” in the airline’s hub in Atlanta, Georgia, and continued late into the week. Nearly 2,000 flights were cancelled, while even more were delayed.

Delta’s operations and public-facing teams, meanwhile, have been working overtime trying to put passengers in transit. On Tuesday, CEO ED Bastian personally apologized in a video message for canceled flights. The next day, he posted another message saying that “this is not who we are.”

While indeed, Delta has among the best on-time performances in the industry and arguably one of the better products, one wonders how the new CEO, who adopted the role only three months ago, will whether the storm.


Dearest DL, I hope your on time stats go into the toilet for this, I really do

@bigmalx | Seattle-based avgeek

Air Berlin


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The Points Guy is hiring a nights and weekends editor. More on the job is over at mediabistro.


Can be sent to gm[at]skift[dot]com or to @grantkmartin

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Photo credit: A Delta employee helping passengers at Seattle Tacoma Airport after its global outage August 8, 2016. Delta Air Lines

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