Delta scraps change fees on international flights, joining American Airlines

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  • Delta is permanently dropping change fees for all international flights that start in North America.
  • American Airlines has already done the same, and both airlines have also dropped change fees for domestic flights.
  • Airlines have been looking to bolster passenger traffic during the COVID-19 pandemic and amid the US economic downturn, which has hit the travel industry especially hard.
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Delta Air Lines has scrapped change fees for international flights.

According to a statement from the airline, Delta “is permanently eliminating change fees for international travel originating from North America, effective immediately.”

The airline is also dropping change fees for all flights purchased through March 30, 2021. The new policy does not apply to basic economy tickets, Delta said.

“We don’t want just another reason why customers are nervous about booking and making advanced travel plans,” CEO Ed Bastian said during an interview with CNBC, per NBC News.

Read more: Airline CEOs say it doesn’t matter how well they protect passengers from COVID-19 — travel demand won’t bounce back until the pandemic ends

Delta, along with American and United, had already dropped change fees for domestic flights earlier this year. In November,American expanded its policy to include international flights and long-haul travel. American Airlines passengers are also allowed to enjoy the full value of their tickets if they make any changes before their travel date.

The US Bureau of Transportation Statistics said change fees have historically been a strong source of revenue to airlines, bringing in $US2.8 billion in 2019.

Airlines have been looking to bolster passenger traffic during the COVID-19 pandemic and amid the US economic downturn, which has hit the travel industry especially hard.