Sitting next to an empty seat has become a rare luxury for air travellers these days. But one lucky DL pax got more than an empty adjacent seat on a recent flight from MSY to ATL. He got the entire plane.
Steven Schneider was flying home to Atlanta when he arrived to an empty gate area for his flight at the New Orleans airport.
“I was so nervous,” Schneider told WSB TV of Atlanta. “I couldn’t believe it. I felt like I missed my flight!”
The flight was still there, but Schneider was the only passenger. Apparently all of the flight's other pax had been rebooked onto different flights because of a delay. DL attempted to contact Schneider to see if he also wanted a different option home, but the airline couldn’t get through because it did not have his correct phone number.
When he arrived to the gate, Schneider was given the option of taking another flight or sticking to his original booking. He opted for the latter and ended up being the only pax on the 160-seat MD-90.
“At first I felt really bad, because I didn’t want the plane to only make the trip because of me,” Schneider said. “But after talking to a flight attendant at the gate, she said the plane needed to go back to Atlanta anyway.”
DL acknowledged Schneider's situation to WSB.
"We're glad this customer enjoyed a somewhat rare solo experience,” the airline said in a statement. “Other customers were accommodated on an earlier departure. The reason we operated the flight was … so it could be in place for a departure the next day."