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Delta Air Lines CEO talks blocking the middle row: "We believe it's safe to sit in the middle seat but it’s a question of consumer confidence"

Delta Air Lines CEO Ed Bastian: While data suggests there's little risk to sitting in the middle row, Delta will block those seats through the winter.

Video Transcript

ED BASTIAN: Well, we will continue to watch that and make those decisions as we get into the next year. We believe it's safe to sit in the middle seat. That's not a question. It's really a question of consumer confidence sitting in-- sitting in the middle seat. And I think when you speak to consumers, if they have an option not to sit-in a middle seat and to have the middle seat open, that's their clear preference. We saw that in our results in the third quarter.

Our revenue performance on a like for like basis was the best in the industry. Even with 40% of our seats not being sold, we had more average passenger revenue at Delta than the main competitors that we go up against. So it's going to be something we watch and study. We are looking at some-- probably sometime in the spring to-- to make that determination as to when the right time is to start to sell those middle seats. But they're going to be blocked through the winner.