Delta inks deal with caterer Do & Co, signaling a return of inflight meals this spring

Dec 23, 2020

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If you have flown on any U.S. airline during the pandemic, you likely saw limited food and beverage service on your flight.

Delta has made some of the most significant inflight catering cuts domestically. For instance, only snack boxes are offered in Delta One, even on premium routes such as between New York and Los Angeles.

While these service reductions have been touted as ways to keep passengers safe, it also helps airlines reduce costs during a challenging financial period.

Naturally, inflight meals and full beverages for Delta will have to make a comeback at some point — and we now know a bit more about what that might look like in 2021.

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Delta has entered an agreement with notable food services company Do & Co to become the airline’s sole hub caterer in Detroit. While Austria-based Do & Co has catering deals with dozens of airlines worldwide, it’s synonymous with the distinguished inflight dining experiences for business class passengers on Austrian Airlines and Turkish Airlines.

Turkish Airlines Do & Co catering, before the pandemic. (Photo by Zach Honig / The Points Guy)

Will this be something we can expect for Delta One in the future? Well, perhaps, but likely not at the levels that we see with the aforementioned airlines.

That’s because Turkish and Austrian are two of the very few carriers that staff flights with onboard chefs, which, in theory, results in consistent, higher-quality inflight meals. Additionally, airlines are primarily responsible for designing the menus and recipes — not the caterers. However, this is still an exciting prospect for Delta passengers in all classes of service.

In its press release, Do & Co suggested that it’s “unparalleled depth of culinary expertise” will help Delta “improve the inflight customer experience.”

Related: Delta finally eliminates the strict 72-hour award cancellation rule

The Do & Co partnership with Delta kicks in on March 16, 2021 with a contract set for at least 10 years. The premium caterer also hinted that it will look to do business at Delta’s other hubs later in 2021.

Interestingly, March is also when Delta’s commitment to blocking middle seats ends. Presumably, this March launch with Do & Co may signal the restart of inflight meals and catering.

According to Delta’s current schedule on March 16, some of the first international flights to receive new Do & Co catering will be service to Tokyo (HND), Seoul (ICN), Paris (CDG) and Amsterdam (AMS).

Featured photo by Zach Griff / The Points Guy. 

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