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Delta Raising Compensation for Overbooked Flights

* Delta raises compensation cap for overbooked flight bumps
* Changes come in the wake of United Airlines debacle last week
* The 5-figure compensation cap won’t be offered right of the bat

In light of the United Airlines controversy that went viral last week, other airlines are taking precautions to avoid similar conflicts by expanding current policies regarding oversold flights and involuntarily bumped passengers.

Delta Airlines is now offering agents more flexibility and money to handle overbooking situations to ensure that these situations go smoothly. Delta CEO Ed Bastian told reporters last Wednesday that overbooking flights is a standard practice used by all airlines, and should not be subjected to new legislation. However, he stressed that customer service agents need to do a better job in satisfying customers and reducing potential conflicts.

According to the Associated Press, on Friday, Delta expanded on overbooking caps to do just that, releasing a new memo with updated protocol for overbooked flights and handling customers. The memo tells Delta employees, “If more volunteers are needed, solicit early and often. Be prepared to explain options to customers traveling to their final destinations.”

Another change delineated in the memo increased the current cap of compensation for overbooked flight offerings very significantly. Now, Delta customer-service agents are able to offer up to $2,000 per change from the previous $800. Higher-ranking airline employees like an operations service manager are now permitted to offer up to $9,950, from the previous cap of $1,350.

As per usual, flight attendants and customer service agents will continue with standard “bumping” procedures, asking for volunteers at the gate prior to boarding the plane, and asking again on board as a last result. In other words, you will not be offered the nearly five-figure award of $9,950 right off the bat, so it may be best to not accept your first offer.