Delta Air Lines will cease duty free sales on international flights on 8 August, citing disagreement with its duty free vendor, DFASS.
In an internal message to flight attendants, obtained by RGN, Delta’s inflight service unit said, “The decision to end the program came after Delta and its duty free vendor, DFASS, were unable to agree on terms to resolve disagreements over how the program would be administered.
“A replacement duty free vendor is not being explored at this time and all duty free items, catalogs and inflight advertisements will be removed from the aircraft in the coming weeks. Customers and employees interested in purchasing duty free items are reminded that most international airports offer a wide selection of products at duty free retail outlets.”
Duty free is only offered on Delta’s long-haul international (not Caribbean) and Asia flights. Alcoholic beverages and headsets are complimentary in all cabins.
Some Delta flight attendants find duty free sales to be an annoyance more than anything else. The commission received by flight attendants for selling duty free items is minimal, and there is fraud in some markets.
Delta frequent flyer Rebekah Michaels is celebrating today’s decision, saying she’s excited at the prospect of not hearing another announcement onboard after the meal service “especially on the overnight flights”.
Considering the worldwide sunset date of 8 August, and the checklist provided to flight attendants today (see below), it seems that this decision was well thought-out by management.
Poor Marilyn Hartman — the 62-year-old woman who was arrested several times earlier this year for at least four attempts to board planes at SFO without a ticket — managed to get herself onto a Southwest Airlines flight to LAX at San Jose Mineta Airport on Monday night and was once again arrested. She made it all the way to L.A., though!
Hartman was arrested and put on probation back in April after repeated attempts to board planes to Hawaii, telling authorities that she had cancer (this hasn’t been confirmed) and just wanted to go somewhere warm. She was given a mental health screening after her third attempt and found to be mentally fit and “articulate.” District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe told SF Weekly at the time, “She just strikes me as a very lonely person.”
A Southwest flight attendant became aware at some point Monday night that Hartman was on the plane without a ticket, after she successfully sneaked through security and past the gate agent by sliding through past a family. As one “airport patron” tells KTVU, the fact that she was so easily successful “does raise the hackles on the back of the neck a little bit.”
As KRON 4 reports, Southwest called the LAPD, who detained Hartman at LAX’s Terminal 1 and are now holding her on $500 bail. Can someone please bail her out and send her to Hawaii? She is clearly bound and determined not to be stuck in San Francisco — and this GoFundMe campaign from April still has not reached its $2500 goal. Let’s do this, people.
San Jose Airport officials and Southwest Airlines are meanwhile holding their heads low and figuring out how they both failed to keep an unticketed passenger off a plane — the second one in a year if you count the 16-year-old who got himself onto the tarmac into that wheel wellon his way to Hawaii. Homeland Security issued a statement Tuesday blaming both the airport and the airline for not “protecting passengers from a potential threat to their safety.”