Delta Air Lines announced Tuesday that it is offering a systemwide travel waiver for flights taking place July 1–4, ahead of what the carrier said will be “potentially challenging weekend travel days.”
The new July Fourth travel policy comes as U.S. airports are breaking pandemic records for the number of air travelers passing through security. The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) reported that it screened 2,426,408 passengers last Monday (the Juneteenth holiday observed), the highest number of air travelers since the start of the pandemic. Since then, the daily number of air travelers has surpassed 2.4 million three more times—and the July Fourth weekend hasn’t even officially started yet.
As passenger numbers continue to climb during an intense rebound in travel demand, airlines and airports are struggling to keep up—flight delays, cancellations, and lines at the airport have been mounting along with the growing number of air travelers.
“Delta is expected to carry customer volumes from Friday, July 1, through Monday, July 4, not seen since before the pandemic as people yearn to connect with the world,” the airline said in a statement.
Consequently, Delta is allowing customers to rebook their trip to before or after the July 1–4 weekend with no change fee and no charge for a fare difference as long as the travel takes place between the same origin and destination airports. The rebooked travel needs to take place by July 8, 2022—so not a ton of wiggle room. The changes can be made on Delta’s My Trips landing page when customers are signed into their account or on the Fly Delta app.
“Some operational challenges are expected this holiday weekend,” Delta stated, adding that it is hoping “to minimize the ripple effect of disruptions” with this offer.