In yet another quarterly report, Delta Air Lines has reported loss. The airline has posted a net loss of almost USD 1.2 billion in the first quarter on USD 4.15 billion in revenue. But the Atlanta-based carrier said that it is expecting to break even in June as travel demand is slowly picking pace. Delta almost every other airline is losing money because of the coronavirus pandemic. But they all are hopeful as the bookings are slowing increasing. This is because more and more travelers are being inoculated, travel restrictions are being eased and more destinations are now open.
The airline said that they have seen an 85 percent recovery in the domestic leisure bookings of 2019 levels. But the business and international travel remain depressed. Chief Executive Officer Ed Bastian said that the number of bookings has doubled in March when compared with that of in January. However, he said that corporate travel is picking slowly and is just 20 percent of the norm. “When we see the figures for the first quarter, the one thing that is very clear is that travel business has made a turn. We are now seeing a continuous surge in bookings in comparison to what we got just over the last couple of months,” Bastian said.
Bastian said that the airline is now on the path to return to profitability in the quarter ending September. The airline has lost a huge sum of money during the pandemic. This is when it was the last airline in the United States to block middle seats. The practice started very early to make travelers at ease while flying. Delta said that the practice will be abandoned next month. This despite a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study that finds the maintaining social distance onboard can reduce the chances of getting infected with the COVID-19. The study said that physical distancing can reduce exposure to the virus by up to 57 percent.