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Delta Will Block Middle Seats into March 2021 (At Least)

Delta announced today that they will block middle seats on flights now through at least March 30, 2021. This is an extension of their previous industry leading policy (at least on par with Alaska) that was previously through the beginning of January.

Kudos to Delta for continuing to lead on the seat blocking thing during this pandemic. I know that some readers will say it doesn’t make a difference, but it absolutely does.

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For one thing, it’s just more comfortable not having someone two inches away from you that might let their mask slip and talk loud, sneeze or cough. For another thing, actual science does bear out that the risk of catching COVID-19 on-board is absolutely reduced when the middle seat is blocked, by a factor of 1.8. So yes, I get the airlines need to make money – but I work for you, not for the airlines. And it’s in your interest to have the middle seat blocked for now.

What are the Other US Airlines Doing?

Alaska has middle seats blocked through Jan 6th, 2021. Southwest ends their middle seat blocking policy on Dec 1st, 2020. JetBlue will stop all blocking by January 8th, 2021, though they have been capping overall capacity and not blocking all middle seats.

American Airlines and United Airlines have been packing all flights wall to wall for a while now.

MilesTalk Musings

Once again, my praise here should prove that I’m no Delta hater. I hate on the SkyMiles program all the time – because it’s awful at rewarding loyalty with regards to the opacity of the value of your miles and lack of trust.

But Delta as a whole, including their Medallion program and these COVID-19 protocols show why I think they are actually the best run major airline in the US, SkyMiles aside.

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Thoughts?

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I got "in the game" in 2003 and since then I've collected literally millions and millions of frequent flyer miles and hotel points. I've flown around the world in first class seats that would cost $29,000 using frequent flyer miles and a few bucks in tax. And I've stayed in some of the finest hotels - all for free! A few years ago I realized many of my friends actually thought I was paying for these!! So I started sharing my tips. It's long been a passion, but when I hosted a session on Miles and Points at this year's South by Southwest festival, my love of the game intensified and this blog was born.

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