Delta to Invest more than $770 million to upgrade cabin on domestic Boeing 757-200, 737-800, Airbus A319 and A320 Fleet
Delta Air Lines (NYSE: DAL) announced on January 8th 2014 that it was launching a massive $770 million program to re-equip the interior cabin of its domestic single-aisle fleet.
This move is geared towards a more efficiency utilization of space inside the aircraft will ultimately provide dual benefits of adding seating capacity while enhancing passenger’s comfort. Targets of the cabin refit are some 49 Boeing 752-200 aircraft, 57 Airbus A319, 69 Airbus A320 along with 43 Boeing 737-800. According to the Associated Press, the 757-200 will be permitted to fly with nineteen more seats, the A319 six more and the A320 ten more.
The scope of passengers’ amenities that will be introduced aboard the US domestic fleet will include updated LED cabin lighting, deployment of new lavatory designs as well as larger capacity overhead bins, providing access to Wi-Fi, installing in-seat video with satellite TV as well as electric power on every seats all provided with adjustable headrests.
The scope of work necessary to extract more space from these aircraft will include the use of the newly re-designed more space-saving galleys and lavatories, and the employment of so called “slim-line” Zodiac seats.
225 aircraft to be upgraded by 2016
When the program winds down in mid-2016, modifications on the 757-200 fleet will see the 49 aircraft operating within the US re-configured in a 20 First Class seats, 29 Economy Comfort seats and 150 Economy seats layout. Another 7 aircraft of this type serving international routes that will receive similar modifications will be re-configured in 18 First Class seats, 28 Economy Comfort seats and 151 Economy seats layout. A major improvement aiming at enhancing overall customer experience will see the employment of new innovative overhead storage bin that extend carry-on luggage capacity by 50%.
The 57 A319 and 69 A320 Airbus aircraft will also see a boost in overhead storage bins capacity by 60%. These aircraft will gain wider Economy seats (from 17.2 inches to 18 inches). This will result in cabin configuration of 12 seats in First Class, 18 Economy Comfort seats offering 34 inches of pitch and 102 Economy Class seats offering 31 inches of pitch on the A319 fleet, while the larger A320’s fleet seating arrangement will see 16 First Class seats, 18 Economy Comfort seats with the 34 inches of pitch and 126 Economy Class seat with the widened 34 inches seats.
The Boeing 737-800 fleet modifications will see a total of 43 aircraft fitted with 16 First Class seats, 18 Economy Comfort seats and 126 Economy seats providing passengers with the enhanced products. Another 30 such aircraft may already have received the new layout.
These upgrades follow a 3 year $1 billion effort launched in January 2010 towards installing fully flat-bed Business Elite Seats on 90 trans-oceanic aircraft, covering 14 Boeing 767-400ERs, 52 Boeing 767-300ERs, 16 Boeing 747-400s and eight Boeing 777-200ERs