Delta Air Lines Pilots Approve Contract with 1/3 Pay Raise

Delta Air Lines Pilots Approve Contract with 1/3 Pay Raise

DALLAS — On Wednesday, the Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA), which represents the more than 15,000 pilots at Atlanta-based Delta Air Lines (DL), announced that 78% of the pilots who voted had overwhelmingly approved a new agreement with up to 34% pay increases.

96% of eligible DL pilots voted on the four-year contract, which provides an estimated US$7bn in economic value. John Laughter, Delta’s Chief of Operations, said that the agreement “recognizes our pilots’ contributions.”

Salt Lake City (SLC) airport Delta Air Lines ramp overview. Photo: Michael Rodeback/Airways

US Pilot Contracts and ALPA

American Airlines (AA), Southwest Airlines (WN), and United Airlines (UA) are all in negotiations for new contracts. Last year, Alaska Airlines (AS) pilots voted to approve a new three-year contract that includes increased pay, greater flexibility, better benefits, and stronger job security.

The DL contract agreement passed by 82%, with more than 96% of AS’s 3,300 pilots voting. AS pilots are also represented by ALPA. The contract included:

  • Wage increases up to 23% depending on years of service. Top-of-scale captains will now make US$306 per hour, increasing to US$330 after two years. A market rate adjustment will keep pilots in line with pilots at other airlines in the years ahead.
  • ALPA-designed schedules and increased flexibility for pilots to adjust their schedules.
  • Stronger job security ensuring Alaska pilot growth alongside company growth.
  • Retirement contribution increases and no increase to health care costs.

As of August 2022, the national average salary for airline transport pilots in the US was US$84,372 per year, while for cargo pilots, it was US$63,988 per year.

Will the ratification of DL’s new contract put pressure on other major U.S. airlines to reach similar agreements with their pilot unions? Be sure to share your comments on our social media channels.

Featured image: Delta Air Lines

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