“The work each of our partners has done to strengthen their businesses for the future makes these partnerships even more valuable,” Delta CEO Ed Bastian said in a written statement.
Airlines like Delta with global networks depend on partnerships with foreign airlines to extend their reach beyond international hub cities.
Many foreign carriers struggled in a fight for financial survival as borders closed around the world because of the pandemic. While the size and breadth of the United States allows American airlines to rely on domestic travel to fuel much of their business, carriers in other countries often generate less money on domestic routes.
The rise of the delta variant of COVID-19 earlier this year stalled rising hopes of a recovery in international flying. The recent spread of the omicron variant threatens to further delay a rebound in cross-border travel.
Delta Chief Financial Officer Dan Janki said in a written statement that “investing in our partners now — even as we continue to navigate the pandemic — is the right choice to support Delta’s long-term strategy.”
The airline said there is no change in its investments with partners Air France/KLM, Korean Air and China Eastern.