The value of seat space during a pandemic

Delta Air Lines did not sell the middle seat in 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Its principal rivals sold all seats starting in July 2020.

Delta raised its fares by 15%.

Passengers paid $23 to prevent a stranger from sitting next to them.

Delta had to operate more flights, so this was not a profit-enhancing strategy.

Here is the paper, via the excellent Kevin Lewis.


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