In a regulatory filing today, Delta announced a handful of changes due to the situation in Japan and increasing fuel prices. Worth noting:
– Delta sees 6-9 months of financial pressure because of the earthquake in Japan. About 8% of the company’s revenue comes from flights to/from/over Japan, and they’re going to reduce Japan capacity by 20% through May, including eliminating Haneda service for the near future.
– As you might have guessed given their strength in Cincinnati, Delta is reducing capacity at their Memphis hub by 25%. Not a shocker, but a bummer for those in Memphis accustomed to having a robust hub.
– Reducing trans-Atlantic capacity by 4% year-over-year in the second half of 2011. They haven’t announced specific routes, but in the past this meant cutting a handful of cities and reducing frequencies to secondary cities.
Delta says they remain committed to their focus on customer service aspects of travel, continuing their program to upgrade premium seats, add more first class seats domestically, and add Economy Comfort seating to long-haul travel (I consider this the biggest win for the consumer). The 1-2 punch of fuel and Japan would’ve been a serious blow to Delta 5 years ago, but they a management team that has been very quick to respond to downturns without relying on fare cutting. They’ll be fine…