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Delta Air Lines extends seat-blocking through April 2021

Feb. 08, 2021
2 min read
Delta Air Lines extends seat-blocking through April 2021
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Delta Air Lines will continue blocking seats for at least an additional month, the carrier announced Monday.

The carrier’s seat caps and blocks on middle seats will now run through at least April 30. Previously, the caps had been set to expire March 30.

In extending the policy, Delta hopes to remove anxiety about packed planes as a reason travelers might put off returning to the skies. Many customers have not flown since the pandemic first hit the U.S. in March, and flights in the U.S. are still only about half-full on average — even after a slow recovery that began in the summer.

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Delta, citing recent studies, says it’s confident that the risk of inflight transmission is low.

"We’ll continue to reassess seat blocking in relation to case transmission and vaccination rates, while bringing back products and services in ways that instill trust in the health and safety of everyone on board – that will always be Delta’s priority,” Bill Lentsch, Delta’s chief customer experience officer, said in a statement.

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Delta’s move means it will be blocking all economy middle seats far longer than any other of the nation’s six biggest carriers. Alaska, which had stood out along with Delta for capping sales, now offers most middle seats for sale, but is blocking middles in its extra-legroom "Premium Class" through May 31, 2021.

More: Which US airlines are blocking middle seats, requiring masks?

As for Delta, it will block middle seats on flights with 3-3 seating configurations. On regional jets with 2-2 seating, it will block at least one seat in each row. For planes with other configurations – notably widebody jets – sales will be capped at about 75%.

TPG reporter Zach Griff contributed to this post.

Featured image by (Photo by Zach Griff/The Points Guy)
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
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Best card for premium perks while traveling
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards Rate

10XEarn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
5X5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel.
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  • Intro Offer
    Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel

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  • Annual Fee

    $395
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    740-850
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Why We Chose It

The Capital One Venture X card is one of the best all-round travel credit cards ever launched. Not only is it offering a tremendous welcome bonus, but cardholders can earn tons of miles on everyday spending and receive a 10,000-mile anniversary bonus to boot. Its annual fee is $395, but cardholders can count on up to $300 in statement credits toward travel booked through Capital One Travel each year and other valuable benefits like access to Priority Pass lounges and Capital One’s own growing family of airport lounges.

Pros

  • Excellent welcome offer worth 75,000 miles after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months.
  • Up to $300 in annual travel statement credits toward bookings make through Capital One Travel.
  • 10,000 bonus miles (worth $100 toward travel) each account anniversary.

Cons

  • The $395 annual fee might be expensive for some, but this card’s benefits provide much more value than that.
  • If you don’t travel frequently, this might not be the best card for you.
  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Receive up to $300 back annually as statement credits for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of options
  • Get 10,000 bonus miles (equal to $100 towards travel) every year, starting on your first anniversary
  • Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on all other purchases
  • Unlimited complimentary access for you and two guests to 1,400+ lounges, including Capital One Lounges and our Partner Lounge Network
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
  • Use your Venture X miles to easily cover travel expenses, including flights, hotels, rental cars and more—you can even transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
  • Named editors' choice for "Best New Credit Card of 2021" by The Points Guy
  • Earn 10 miles per dollar when you book on Turo, the world's largest car sharing marketplace, through May 16, 2023