Is Delta shaming its passengers into upgrades?

Eric Migicovsky, founder of Pebble, and James Patten, a TED senior fellow, at their Delta boarding gate.
Source: Delta Air Lines

Attempts by airlines to get you to pay for upgrades may have taken a psychological turn.

A passenger rights group contends that Delta Air Lines has started to shame passengers for skimping on upgrades, according to a report by the L.A. Times.

The strategy of Delta's site to warn customers of all the negative side effects that come with cheap tickets, such as boarding the plane after everyone else, a lack of access to storage space, and the absence of a seat assignment is just another tactic to pressure customers into upgrading,'s Paul Hudson told the Times.

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The president of the nonprofit passenger rights group likened the tactic to car buyers being pressured at auto dealerships, according to the report.

Delta spokesman Anthony Black says the site's warnings aren't about passenger shaming as much as they are about "purchase transparency."

"Our goal is to create purchase transparency so customers do not select something they did not intend to buy," he told CNBC. "The most important thing we can do is make sure customers know what may or may not come with their purchase."

Read the full report from the L.A. Times.