Before the current crisis engulfed the world, I had a chance to fly in Delta One roundtrip between Atlanta and Bogota onboard a Boeing 767-300ER. The route is one of the shortest international Delta One experiences available. It also comes as one of the best deals in Delta’s network. While the product up front is dated and definitely not the best in the world, for a short flight like this, it offers a pleasant experience.
Pricing on the route
Delta One between Atlanta and Bogota is one of the best deals in Delta’s network. I had a connecting flight in from Baltimore; however, even with that connection, I paid just under $1,000 for the roundtrip flight. For just under ten hours of flying in Delta One and another just over two in domestic First on my connection, I found it to be an excellent deal. Sometimes, between Atlanta and Bogota nonstop, you can find pricing on the route for between $800 and $900. This makes this route one of the best international Delta One deals available.
Be careful when you do book, however. Delta also flies a Boeing 757 between New York-JFK and Bogota. This almost six-hour flight is on a recliner-style 757– a far inferior experience compared to the lie-flat.
On the ground in Atlanta, I was able to visit a Delta Sky Club. I chose to go to the one in Concourse F– the international terminal. While my flight was departing from Concourse E, it is a quick walk, and the Sky Club in F has an outdoor viewing deck where I got to see some great sights– including the Boeing 767 at the gate taking me down to Bogota.
In Bogota itself, on the way home, I was able to check out the LATAM VIP Lounge. Both lounges were pretty standard with complimentary food and beverage options. However, in the wake of the current global health crisis, those options have become limited.
Delta was still boarding by zone when I departed on my flight. At the gate, boarding was conducted using biometrics, which really sped up the process. Once onboard, I navigated to my seat, 1D. Upon stepping onboard, I was directed right into the cabin. On the 767s, boarding is conducted through the forward door, making things a little hectic in the cabin.
The Delta One cabin is arranged in a 1-2-1 configuration onboard the 767s. This means that all seats have direct aisle access. The configuration is staggered and forward-facing. The footwell for the seats is in the console of the seat in front, meaning that, in even-numbered rows, window seats are closest to the aisle. Meanwhile, in odd-numbered rows, window seats are closer to the window with a console separating the seat from the aisle. On the way back, I flew in seat 4A, up against the aisle.
In the center, seats are also staggered. In each aisle, one seat is closer to the aisle while the other is removed from the aisle by the console. The “B” lettered seats are closer to the aisle in odd-numbered rows while the “C” lettered seats are closer to the aisle in even-numbered rows.
Note that seat 5A could also serve as a crew rest on longer flights. It was not necessary on this five-hour hop.
Sitting upright, there was plenty of legroom. There was storage available in the footwell for small items. On the way back, I used this area to store the coffee I had purchased at the airport.
On the way back, I noticed the biggest difference between the seats up against the aisle and the ones against the window. During boarding, I took a few hits from bags to my knees and feet, thanks to how narrow the aisles were. For the rest of the boarding process, I shifted over to the side of the seat to get away from the impact zone. The trim on the seats, however, took a decent beating.
Each seat had a side console with a reading light, power outlet, and headphone jack.
At the front of the console, there were the seat controls. These were simple and easy to use. On my first flight, they were quick and responsive. On my second one, however, I had to press a little harder to get the seat to move.
If you are in a seat that is closer to the aisle, the console is located up against the window. For the seats up against the window, the console is separating you from the aisle.
As for storage, there was not much usable space outside of the footwell. There was a pouch next to the inflight entertainment screen, but aside from holding the magazine, safety card, and menu, there wasn’t much room for anything else.
The seat itself was a woefully outdated product. There was limited privacy as the cabin had a very open feel. In addition, the seatback screens were a little grainy and showed the product’s age.
One of the joys of a lie-flat seat is being able to get a decent amount of rest on a flight. On longer transatlantic hops, this is of the utmost importance. The product itself has a few shortcomings. First, the footwell is a little tight. I tend to sleep on my side with my feet stacked, which just did not work out in this configuration. It was, however, slightly better in the bulkhead than my flight back.
On the return flight, in my aisle seat, the footwell was a little tighter than the one in the bulkhead. However, the other issue with the aisle seat is the lack of privacy. It was a bit better up against the window.
Since this was an international Delta One flight, there were some nice amenities. The bedding was the airline’s signature Westin Heavenly, which was just fine for this flight. This was available both on the outbound and inbound flights.
The amenity kit was also well-stocked and the same on both flights.
Passengers also received a set of headphones for the flight.
On the way out, the flight left in the afternoon, meaning we were served lunch. On the ground, service started with a pre-departure beverage. I selected a glass of orange juice.
The menu was as follows:
The appetizer page for lunch stated the following:
The main course and dessert options were as follows:
There was also a snack selection:
The drink options were the same on both flights:
Lunch service started with warmed mixed nuts and drink service. I went with a soda. This was shortly after takeoff.
Just over an hour after takeoff from Atlanta, the lunch service was presented all on one tray.
I had selected the Chicken Parmesan, which came with a Calabrian chile tomato sauce and sauteed broccolini. The food was excellent and flavorful. It also was not overcooked or undercooked, although the presentation left a little to be desired. As for the appetizers, I did enjoy the beechwood smoked trout but found the bread and salad to be way too cold for my liking. This was not as extensive as my service in Delta One onboard an A330 from Amsterdam to Minneapolis.
I finished the meal with dessert. Getting ready for my vacation, I selected the vanilla ice cream with chocolate sauce.
Overall, the lunch service was just fine for a flight of this length. By the time my ice cream was cleared, we had just over two and a half hours to go to Bogota.
The return flight from Bogota left in the morning, which meant a breakfast service. Below is the breakfast menu:
Service started in the morning with a nut mix. I went with a cup of tea to go with it.
The pace of the breakfast service was similar to that on departure. Just about an hour after takeoff, I was presented the main meal. I went with the banana and dulce de leche crepes.
Much like the lunch service, the fruit and bread were much colder and harder than my liking. I did enjoy the main meal and the cheese plate. I am not a big breakfast person but found this to be filling ahead of my short connection with no lunch break. It was more filling and sweeter than I am used to on a plane, however—still, not a bad way to start the day.
On the way down, the mood onboard the aircraft was jovial, and people were getting ready to see family again and enjoy a vacation. The flight attendants felt the same and were glad to have us onboard. However, during my trip, the health crisis started to spread, and I departed Colombia the day before the government imposed intense restrictions. The service on the return was a little more anxious and hurried– which matched the overall mood from the passengers.
The final verdict
Delta One on the Boeing 767-300ERs is just not competitive anymore. It is an outdated product that is usually overpriced on a fair number of routes. But, for a hop between Atlanta and Bogota, it was just fine, and I would fly it again. However, for a higher price on a longer flight, I would probably look to find another Delta product (such as the new Delta One on the 767-400ERs or A350 Suites) or else another airline.
For now, however, it may be a while before Colombia welcomes visitors again, and Delta puts its 767 back on the route.
Have you flown Delta One on the 767-300s? What was your experience like? Let us know in the comments!