Delta has authorized gate agents to pay up to $2,000 to
entice customers to voluntarily give up their seats when flights are
overbooked, an increase from the previous maximum of $800.
The airline has also authorized supervisors to offer up to
$9,950, up from $1,350. The changes were laid out in a Delta memo to employees
last week that was obtained by the Associated Press. Delta confirmed the
figures in an email to Travel Weekly on Monday.
Delta has implemented the increases following the media
storm from United's treatment of passenger David Dao, who was told to give up
his seat on an April 9 flight from Chicago to Louisville to make way for
airline crew. When Dao refused, United called airport police, who dragged him
off the plane. Dao suffered two lost teeth, a broken nose and a concussion in
the incident, according to his attorney.
Delta had one of the lowest rates of involuntary boarding
denials among U.S. carriers last year at one per 100,000 passengers.