My friend DeltaPoints wrote a post today on some of his recent experiences with Delta Air Lines, #FAIL! – Is it just me or is Delta slipping a little this year? I haven’t flown in three weeks, a problem that is about to resolve itself, but I have to say that my Delta flights this year have all been just fine. In his post, DeltaPoints notes a deterioration in service from Delta including disappointment with Delta’s Android App, @DeltaAssist, IT, Dirty Planes, Pre-Flight Service, and Food. I can’t speak to the Android App, and there’s no real need for me to talk about IT, but I do want to speak to a few of his points, specifically pre-flight service and dirty planes.

I’ve only flown one roundtrip in July and it was a perfectly fine flight experience. Pre-departure beverages were offered in both directions, service was pleasant, and my flights were on time. Maybe I got lucky. Or maybe I was just lucky to spend most of July off the road? My three week break from flying happens to coincide with three of the worst weather weeks I’ve seen. Seriously, my Atlanta backyard is beginning to take on the characteristics of a mud pit. Each day it seems that it rains…..and storms….. and well…. aside from cooler temps, this summer in Atlanta has pretty much sucked. Something tells me that if I had not been basically off the road for the month of July, I might have a different opinion on Delta’s reliability as an Atlanta flyer this month.

As Delta’s largest hub, Atlanta is huge in Delta’s world. I have to wonder if that, in combination with poor weather and typically maxed out summer schedules is not impacting the Delta experience in some way? Things that happen in Atlanta will ultimately impact the rest of the system. Maxed out planes and people make it more difficult to deliver standard services when things hit the fan. Boarding fast and behind schedule makes for a more hectic boarding process, and can make it slightly less likely that normal pre-departure services are delivered. Airplanes scheduled for maximum flying hours coupled with off schedule operations may make it more difficult to meet aircraft cleaning plans. This is all rampant speculation on my part, but I thought it was interesting to ponder. Summers like this one make it easy to not miss my airline days.

-MJ, July 29, 2013