Delta Air Lines (DL, Atlanta Hartsfield Jackson) plans to continue operating its B757s and B767s for several years beyond 2025 given a dearth of new mid-market types, President Glen Hauenstein said during a pilot webinar seen by Airline Weekly.

"The B767 [-300ER] is a fleet that over the next five, seven, eight years will have to be retired. Followed by the B767-400, followed by the 757," Hauenstein said. "What are we looking at down the road in terms of carbon fuels, environmental regulations, noise? There are so many different alternative scenarios... You don't want to get yourself in a box where you've committed specifically," he added.

The carrier had previously said that it would retire all of its B767-300(ER)s by the end of 2025 but would no longer confirm this timeline. The ch-aviation fleets advanced module shows it operates 48 of the twinjets, which are 26 years of age on average. Hauenstein underlined that in 2022, Delta would continue to operate forty-five B767-300(ER)s.

Delta operates twenty-one B767-400(ER)s, which are 20.9 years old on average. The type remains a niche aircraft, currently operated only by Delta, United Airlines, and Bahrain Royal Flight. The airline's fleet of old-generation mid-market aircraft also comprises 111 B757-200s (eleven of which ply VIP charter flights) and sixteen B757-300s. Hauenstein said that the B757-200s will continue to fly for Delta through at least 2027, and the -300s probably even beyond that.

The airline sees both the A321-200 and the A330-900 as an imperfect replacement for some of its current mid-market aircraft. It has ordered 155 A321-200Ns, with deliveries due to begin in January 2022 and service entry slated for April. It also has orders with Airbus for thirty-five A330-900s with at least three more units due via Air Lease Corporation. So far, Delta has taken eleven A330-900s, including nine from the manufacturer and two from the lessor. The airline has been a proponent of AL! BOE-o's "New Mid-Market Airplane" (NMA), although the manufacturer has suspended work on the new type.