Nothing could be more frustrating than sitting on a long-haul flight, fiddling with a flashy new seat back entertainment console, only to discover that just 1 of the 300 movies on demand are free—and it’s a terrible film.
Delta is going to make that moment of disappointment and impending boredom (read: doom) go away. The airline has just announced a fleet-wide policy of free entertainment for all, regardless of your status or cabin class. Yes, that even means you in Basic Economy.
At this time, about 90 percent of Delta’s airplanes have seat-back entertainment systems. That means the chances you’ll have complimentary access to Delta Studio’s 300 movies, 750 TV shows, 100 foreign films, 2,400 songs—maybe even live satellite TV and video games—are pretty high. Many of Delta’s planes allow passengers to stream Delta Studio directly to their mobile phones, laptops, and tablets (thanks to surprisingly good Wi-Fi). Delta has confirmed with T+L that passengers won't even have to pay for the Wi-Fi to make this happen. Only passengers aboard small, 50-seat aircraft, will not have access to this service. Delta typically uses these planes to operate short routes (meaning you wouldn't have nearly enough time to watch The Wolf of Wall Street, anyway).
By July 1, almost all travelers flying with Delta can watch Showtime and HBO, or still-in-theaters flicks like The Jungle Book.
This is just one more piece of good Delta news, following on the heels of a new pet policy and the airline's plan to label all luggage with RFID tags. To all the other domestic carriers, we think Delta just threw down the gauntlet.
Melanie Lieberman is the Assistant Digital Editor at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram at @melanietaryn.