Delta Air Lines will reduce the recline of its seats by as much as half, according to travel site The Points Guy.
The website reported Friday that the airline will retrofit its fleet of 62 Airbus A320 jets beginning Saturday, and it is expected to take two months to do so.
The airline will reduce coach seats’ recline from four inches to two inches, and in first class the seats will be reduced from 5.5 inches of recline to 3.5 inches, according to the website.
Ekrem Dimbiloglu, Delta’s director of onboard product and customer experience, told The Points Guy that the change is to prevent passengers from disturbing those behind them, such as having their laptop snag on the seat or causing an unpleasurable viewing angle with the backseat video screen.
Delta Enters the Seat Recline Wars
A320s typically fly one to two-hour flights that are frequented by business travellers, and Delta has more seatback screens than any other airline, according to the website.
“We’re not adding a single seat into the aircraft,” Dimbiloglu told The Points Guy. “If we were adding seats, or something else, the cynics would be correct. But this is really about more personal space.”
Delta is to reduce the amount of space that passengers in coach and business can recline their seats, it was reported.
The American airline will retrofit its fleet of 62 Airbus A320 jets to reduce the recline of the coach seats from 4 inches to 2 inches and the recline of first class seats from 5.5 inches to 3.5 inches.
Business traveler alert: Delta is about to make it easier to take out your laptop
And officials denied they are trying to fit additional seats on to the aircraft with the change. They claim the move will reduce disruption to other passengers, allow them to pass by for toilet breaks and to use laptops freely.
Delta is to reduce the amount of space that passengers in coach and business can recline their seats. Main Cabin seats inside a Boeing 737-900ER (739), which are smiliar seats on Air
It’s not just coach passengers that will have to cope with change: First-class seat recline will decrease from 5.5 inches to 3.5 inches.
Delta to restrict seat recline, making flying even worse
Delta spokeswoman Savannah Huddleston told CNN Travel: As part of Deltas continued efforts to make the in-flight experience more enjoyable, Delta is testing a small change to its A320 aircraft — adjusting the recline throughout to make multitasking easier.
“It’s hard to believe that any airline taking away something from passengers today could be a good thing,” The Points Guy Executive Editorial Director Scott Mayerowitz said in a statement. “But, if you take Delta at its word, this might make for a more comfortable flight for some. Anybody who ever tried to work on a plane only to have their laptop screen slammed by the seat in front of them will rejoice at the change.”
Delta Is Cutting Your Seat Recline by 2 Inches
Delta has no plans to add seats or reduce space between rows with this test. Its all about protecting customers personal space and minimizing disruptions to multitasking in-flight.
Delta announced Friday it will cut down the amount of seat recline from four inches to two in economy class on its A320 aircraft, beginning Saturday. However, this isn’t because the airline is squeezing more seats into the cabin — and you might actually find it's a good thing. Delta says that this is a test to preserve passengers’ personal space.
Delta Reducing Seat Recline On A320s
Delta typically flies the A320 on short- to medium-haul routes averaging one to two hours, which are frequented by business travelers, according to Huddleston.
The change will only take place on the A320 aircraft, which operate domestic flights around the country lasting only an hour or two. During this time, most passengers are upright and working rather than leaning back to sleep, so the reduced recline may not actually impact that many people’s flight routines. Only time will tell.
Delta reduces seat recline on select planes by 2 inches
It will take Delta about two months to get the entire A320 fleet retrofitted. Aviation security consultant Jeff Price told CNN Travel: Being a frequent business flier, my productivity just dies when the person in front of me drops their seat into my lap.
Ekrem Dimbiloglu, Delta’s director of onboard product and customer experience, told The Points Guy that the reduced recline was an effort to protect the passengers seated behind. Anyone who has put their laptop on a tray while flying knows all too well the woes of a sudden recline.
With the narrow room the airlines give you for your legs, I cant even sit in the normal seats with my legs facing forward.
Delta told The Points Guy that too many laptops have been struck by the reclined seats, and the reclined seats make it difficult for passengers behind to watch video screens.
Delta deny they are trying to fit additional seats on to the aircraft or will save money. They claim the move will minimize disruptions to multi-tasking passengers
A Delta Airlines Airbus A320 passenger jet taxis seen at Salt Lake City international airport. It will take approximately two months to retrofit 62 planes in the airlines fleet
Theres long been a debate among frequent travelers if flyers should have a right to recline or not, explained Scott Mayerowitz, executive editorial director of The Points Guy.
Delta appears to be trying to strike a balance between those who want a little space to work and those who want to take a short nap.
It is understood Delta will rely on passenger feedback, The Points Guy reports, to determine whether the airline will expand the change to the rest of its domestic airplane fleet or go back to the original four inches of coach recline.
There are no plans to change the coach recline on international flights, according to The Points Guy.
He added: But, if you take Delta at its word, this might make for a more comfortable flight for some. Anybody who ever tried to work on a plane only to have a laptop screen slammed by the seat in front will rejoice at the change.
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