Delta Pilots Approve New Contract With 34% Pay Enhance

Delta Airlines pilots are on strike for a new contract at Terminal 4 of JFK International Airport on September 01, 2022 in New York City.

Michael M Santiago | News from Getty Images | Getty Images

Delta Airlines Pilots on Wednesday approved a new contract that includes 34% pay rises over four years and other improvements as the industry faces an ongoing shortage of aviators and strong demand for travel.

Delta and the pilots’ union reached a tentative agreement in December. With Wednesday’s ratification, the Atlanta-based airline became the first of the largest U.S. airlines to sign employment contracts with its 15,000 pilots. United, American And southwest Pilot unions are still in negotiations.

Delta’s pilot union, the Air Line Pilots Association, said the agreement has 78% support of pilots.

The start of the Covid pandemic three years ago had delayed negotiations at major airlines. Demand for travel has since recovered, and airline executives said the shortage of pilots has limited capacity growth, a factor that has kept airfares high.

“Pilots as a whole go on strike when the iron is hot,” said Savanthi Syth, airline analyst at Raymond James. “They probably realize that this is the best moment to close a deal.”

In January, Delta said that even with “all expected labor cost increases,” it expects non-fuel costs to fall by up to 4%.

Contract negotiations between airlines and unions were at times strained as aviators sought higher wages and better flight schedules. Delta pilots voted last year to allow the union to authorize a strike when contract negotiations had failed to reach an agreement, and the airline’s pilots have gone on strike several times.

Alaska Airlines Pilots got raises on their last job last year. JetBlue Airways And Spirit AirlinesWaiting for a government response to their proposed merger, recently struck deals with their pilots.

Regional airlines, where pilot shortages have been worst, have also recently raised salaries to attract and retain pilots.

You might also like

Comments are closed.