Delta enters the seat recline wars
(Mary Altaffer | AP Photo) In this Aug. 8, 2017, file photo, a Delta Air Lines jet waits on the tarmac at LaGuardia Airport in New York. Delta tops an annual study that ranks US airlines by on-time arrivals, complaint rates, and other statistical measurements. Researchers who crunch the numbers say that U.S. airlines are getting better as a whole.
Delta Air Lines will reduce the amount that seats recline on some planes by about two inches, aiming to preserve the workspace of multitasking business travelers.
The first Airbus A320s to get the modified seats will debut this weekend, the carrier said Friday. The distance that seats recline will drop to 3.5 inches from 5.4 in first class, and to 2 inches from 4 in Comfort Plus and coach. The A320s generally are used on flights of two hours or less.
The change — made in response to customer complaints — should make life easier for business travelers trying to work on laptops perched on tray tables, often while viewing mobile phones and seat-back video screens, Delta said.
"It's all about protecting customers' personal space and minimizing disruptions to multitasking in flight," the Atlanta-based airline said by email.
Altering the seats can be done overnight and will take two months for all of Delta's 62 A320s. Delta isn't reducing the space between rows on the single-aisle jet, which seats 157 passengers. Feedback from travelers and employees will help determine whether Delta retrofits other aircraft.
The change was reported earlier by The Points Guy travel blog.