Delta threw passengers at a ‘pizza party’ and offered $6,000 gift cards after a string of delays and cancellations

Elizabeth Ochoa posted a Tik Tok of the “pizza party” thrown for passengers by Delta after a second delay.Elizabeth Ochoa

  • A TikToker said passengers were offered pizza after their flight to Rome was twice delayed.

  • Elizabeth Ochoa told Fortune passengers were also offered gift cards and had tickets refunded.

  • Airlines are struggling to cope with mounting demand amid widespread staffing shortages.

Delta threw a “pizza party” for passengers and offered them $6,000 gift cards after their flight suffered multiple delays and had to turn back, according to a TikTok post.

Elizabeth Ochoa had been planning to travel from Boston to Rome on Wednesday. After a 12-hour delay, she said in a TikTok post that the flight eventually took off, before being forced to return to Logan airport an hour later due to a gas leak.

Ochoa told Fortune that when they landed, Delta staff offered a $6,000 Mastercard gift card to any passenger willing to move their trip to Friday or Saturday.

She declined the gift card offer and opted for a Thursday flight, but then faced another delay of about 90 minutes.

Ochoa then posted a TikTok of stacks of pizzas from Nick’s Place Online which she said Delta had ordered in response to the second delay.

“I travel internationally very frequently,” Ochoa told Fortune. “I have noticed that because of pilot shortages, there have been a lot of cancellations or delays. But this was the first time that I’ve had a pizza party happen.”

Passengers seemed to enjoy the pizza, Ochoa told Fortune. She also said Delta refunded all tickets for the original canceled flight and offered to pay for any accommodation they could not obtain refunds for.

“Delta really did a great job trying to troubleshoot everyone’s destination plans. It was a funny and a super nice way to get the morale a little bit happy on the flight,” Ochoa told Fortune. She arrived at Rome on Friday – a day later than scheduled.

Delta has been notable for its response to cancellations in recent days as staffing shortages mount over the Independence Day weekend. The airline offered passengers on one overbooked flight $10,000 to move to another service last Monday. More than 1,000 flights have been canceled over the holiday weekend.

“While these circumstances are rare, Delta prides itself on a culture of empowering our people to make decisions like these to do the right thing for our customers,” a spokesperson told Fortune.

“In this case, while working to ensure our customers were reaccommodated to their destinations following an unfortunate disruption to their travels, our airport team made the judgment call to order pizza for the impacted customers during this process,” they added. “We applaud them for the gesture while extending apologies to our customers for this delay.”

Delta didn’t immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.

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