It’s been a tough holiday travel season for airlines as thousands of flights have been delayed or canceled over the past few weeks.
Between December 24th, 2021 and January 1st, 2022, more than 12,000 U.S. flights had been canceled with airlines citing inclement weather and COVID-19 infections among crew members as the reasoning. And, while most people may have already returned home from the holidays, those who are traveling this week continue to face issues.
According to CNBC, thousands of flights have been canceled today, January 4th, 2022 with 1,300 flights already canceled out of New York as of noon and more anticipated.
While it is a multitude of airlines canceling trips, Southwest Airlines canceled 314 out of their 3,600+ flights due to poor weather conditions that impacted routes to Denver, Chicago, and Baltimore. These joined other flights that were canceled due to the weather at Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport and at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport today.
JetBlue Airways has also canceled a significant number of their scheduled flights, citing COVID-19 Omicron cases among flight crews as the reasoning. JetBlue has announced that they will continue to cut close to 1,300 flights through mid-January, 2022 due to this.
The Tuesday cancellations aren’t out of the ordinary for current travel conditions, however, as 3,225 flights were canceled on Monday, January 3rd, 2022 due to a winter storm that swept through the mid-Atlantic. This was the largest daily total of canceled flights since February 15th, 2021.
In total, over 20,000 flights have now been canceled since December 24th, 2021 and it could still be some time before travel schedules normal out. However, Airline analysts aren’t expecting these disruptions to last too long and attribute issues to the fact that labor shortfalls and higher costs have caused airlines to struggle with the significant increase in travel demand.
And, even with these issues, Cowen airline analyst Helane Becker notes that they are expecting “inflationary pressure in fuel and labor cost, as well as high interest costs, to lead to higher ticket prices” in 2022.
We’ll continue to keep an eye out for more updates on travel schedules and flight costs, so be sure to stay tuned to AllEars for more of the latest!
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