Time has an interview with Delta CEO Ed Bastian in which he talks about the airline's decision to play hardball when it comes to masks. Here's what he says:
"We’re getting somewhere between 10 to 20 customers a day that have concerns about wearing the mask. We let the people know that they’re going to need to. First of all, you can’t get on the plane without wearing the mask. And then, to the extent customers take them off and refuse to put them back on, we’ve been very clear they’re going to lose their rights to fly Delta if they don’t comply with the flight attendant’s request.
"If after a second or third reminder the customer refuses to put it back on, what our flight attendants are doing is handing out a little card to the customer outlining for them that they’re going to lose their privileges to fly Delta in the future because of their decision, and do you really want that? Because if you do, we will have someone meet you at the end of the flight, when you disembark, and let you know that you’re no longer welcome on Delta. And that’s serving to be a really good deterrent."
Bastian adds, "We currently have probably about a hundred people we’ve put on that no-fly list … I’ve had a number of customers email me back after going on the list, saying they’re sorry and they won’t do it again, asking to be reinstated. And the answer is no."
Bastian goes on: "Our No. 1 mission is restoring confidence in consumers in air travel again in the face of the pandemic. And we know space and distance is one of the key attributes to containing the virus and keeping people confident and safe, psychologically as well as physically. And having that middle seat open, and having that commitment that every single flight on Delta our customers will have the seat next to them open, is huge in their minds. I would add planes rather than passengers."
- KC's View:
Good for him. There is such a thing as the intelligent loss of business, especially if it says to your other customers and employees that you are putting their safety first.