Delta to retrofit Airbus A330, Boeing 767 fleets with Premium Select, in-seat power outlets
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Despite the pandemic, several Delta jets are getting an upgrade.
The Atlanta-based carrier is retrofitting both the legacy Airbus A330 and the Boeing 767-300ER fleets with premium economy cabins and other enhancements, as confirmed by a Delta spokesperson. The first plane to undergo the reconfiguration, a Boeing 767 registered N178DZ, is currently getting modified in Kansas City, Missouri.
The new configuration for the Boeing 767, internally referred to as “76K,” will include an 18-seat Premium Select cabin occupying rows 20-22. The recliners will be arranged in an industry-standard 2-2-2 configuration.
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By the end of May 2022, Delta plans to retrofit 19 of its Boeing 767-300ERs, accounting for roughly half of the aircraft type in its fleet.
As for the A330, both the older -200 and -300 variants will receive a premium economy cabin. (The newer A330-900neo already features a Premium Select and Delta One Suites cabin.)
The A330 retrofits will begin in mid-July this year and all of the carrier’s jets should be complete by mid-June 2022. There’s no telling yet which routes the retrofitted planes will fly, but the current strategy is to deploy them on transatlantic journeys.
In addition to the premium economy upgrade, both the 767s and A330 fleets will also receive additional enhancements, including refreshed lavatories, new LED lighting, in-seat power outlets throughout the cabin and memory-foam comfort seat cushions. Previously, power outlets were reserved for those sitting in the biz or extra-legroom Comfort+ cabin.
Delta’s Premium Select seats are similar to the carrier’s U.S. domestic first-class offering, with a few more bells and whistles, like a leg rest and footrest. Each recliner is equipped with a seat-back entertainment system and power outlets as well. On long-haul international flights, premium economy flyers will receive an amenity kit and elevated meal service too.
While there’s no seat-map available just yet for the A330, Delta has already shared the new layout for the retrofitted “76K.” As you’ll see, the Premium Select cabin on the Boeing 767-300ER is coming at the expense of coach seats.
The legacy configuration included 35 Comfort+ and 165 main cabin seats, while the 767s equipped with Premium Select sport just 21 Comfort+ seats and 151 main cabin ones. In total, the “76K” layout has 10 fewer seats on the plane.
Though Delta is adding a premium economy cabin, the carrier isn’t upgrading the Delta One seats on the A330s or 767-300ERs. These jets feature reverse herringbone and Thompson Vantage lie-flat pods, respectively, arranged in a 1-2-1 configuration. They’re less comfortable and a bit more claustrophobic than the superior Delta One Suites on the Airbus A330neo and flagship A350.
Interestingly, Delta’s larger Boeing 767-400ER is also in the midst of a retrofit program. That jet is receiving a modified version of the Delta One Suite, as well as Premium Select cabins, too.
Despite the fleet retrofits, Delta is slated to phase out the 767-300ERs in the coming years. The carrier announced late last year that the 767s are due to exit the fleet by the end of 2025.
Stay tuned to TPG for more as the planes re-enters service.
Featured photo by Zach Griff/The Points Guy
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