The summer or air travel discontent knows no boundaries. It does not discriminate nor does it give preference...or charity.
Ok, enough of my poetic drivel. Here are the facts:
Over 12,000 flights were either delayed or cancelled over this past weekend for flights that flew within or out of the United States.
Flightaware reported the statistics over the weekend (actually, at the time of this writing cancellations went up on Monday) and illustrate the multitude of issues that airlines and airports are both dealing with.
That would include staff shortages (which has been reported in various places around the world), weather and economic challenges, the most pressing being high jet fuel costs.
Airlines Are Being Forced to Cut Schedules, But is it Enough?
Some airlines have reduced their August schedules in recent months to decrease delays and cancellations, which has stirred the ire of Washington lawmakers as they push for legislation to protect consumers.
More than one third of flights at O’Hare were delayed on Sunday, the most of any U.S. airport in both categories, according to FlightAware.
Regional carriers, such as Skywest and ExpressJet, are facing severe pilot shortages. In order to attract and retain pilots, they are offering generous pay incentives. The shortage is due, in part, to the fact that many pilots are choosing to work for major airlines, which are offering better pay and benefits.
The bottom line is airlines and airports simply do not have enough staff. Where did they all go? That's a debate for another day but the stark fact remains...this will continue for the foreseeable future. Either that, or airlines must cut their schedules.