If the recent news that Delta Airlines is the best U.S. airline for customer satisfaction surprised you, or even had you wondering if it was time to take the family into the bunker for the end-times, I have some more news for you. You might want to make sure you’re fully stocked on canned goods, because now, Delta is making yet another move to increase customer satisfaction. They’ve announced that they’re going to reduce seat recline by 50 percent on select planes. And that’s a good thing.
Reducing seat recline? A good thing? Are you mad?! — you may be wondering.
But before you freak out, you should first know that they’re only doing this on a limited number of planes. According to Skift, seat recline will be reduced by 50 percent on 62 airplanes that fly “business routes shorter than two hours.” And if you’re thinking to yourself, But I love going full recline when people are trying to get some work done before they land, then I have news for you: you’re a monster, and you should get a neck pillow like everyone else so you can sleep sitting up.
“This is not a push to add seats to the cabin or find a way to reduce the pitch of the seats,” Director of onboard product and customer experience, Ekrem Dimbiloglu, told Skift, “It’s about ensuring an optimal experience.”
If you’re a human being of average to above-average height and you’ve ever been on an airplane, you’ve likely found yourself sitting in your seat, minding your own business, maybe even enjoying your free ginger ale, when the person in the seat ahead of you decides to slam their seat right back into full recline, hard plastic now smashing against your knees. Now, if we’re talking about an eight-hour redeye that’s crossing the Atlantic Ocean in the dead of night, fine. You should try to get as much sleep as possible. But for shorter flights — especially for business travelers who use air time to catch up on work without having to answer texts or emails — that’s not okay. There is airplane etiquette to worry about, after all.
As to when we can expect the change, Delta told CNN it will take about two months to redo the recline on the A320 fleet. So buck up, bucko. Or rather, sit up.