Delta sees 90pc drop in Q2 revenues due to virus

NEW YORK (AFP) – Delta Air Lines said on Friday it will reduce hours for some employees as it projected a stunning 90 per cent drop in second-quarter revenue due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Delta Chief Executive Ed Bastian announced the step in a letter to employees which also disclosed that the carrier submitted its application to the Treasury Department to participate in a USD50 billion federal support programme for commercial airlines.

“As we move into April, we continue to see our passenger volumes and revenues drop,” Bastian said. “For example on Saturday we had about 38,000 customers flying, versus our normal late-March Saturday of 600,000.

“Unfortunately, even as Delta is burning more than USD60 million in cash every day, we know we still haven’t seen the bottom.”

Bastian said 30,000 employees volunteered for unpaid leaves of absence, where employees are not paid but continue to receive health benefits.

He said the company would cut by 25 per cent the hours for ground-based employees.

JetBlue also announced it would seek federal funds under the programme, pointing to an “unprecedented decline in demand for travel”.

Several dozen mothballed Delta Air Lines jets parked at Kansas City International Airport in Kansas City, Missouri. PHOTO: AP