Flight Cancellations Piling Up Ahead of Peak Summer Travel Period

Flight Cancellations Piling Up Ahead of Peak Summer Travel Period

United Airlines planes parked at airport. (photo via Niall_Majury/iStock Unreleased)

Travelers continue to experience crippling flight delays and cancellations across the country as we approach the peak summer travel season.

According to flight-tracking website FlightAware.com, more than 1,750 flights within, into or out of the U.S. were canceled on Thursday, including more than one-third of flights at New York City’s LaGuardia Airport. Nearby Newark Liberty International Airport also saw a quarter of its flights scrapped on Thursday. Other East Coast airports in cities such as Boston, Washington, D.C. and Charlotte were also heavily disrupted.

JetBlue and American Airlines were hit the hardest, canceling 12 percent and 9 percent of their Thursday schedules, respectively.

As of Friday at 11:30 a.m. ET, more than 1,060 flights within, into or out of the U.S. have already been canceled, according to FlightAware, with many coming at New York City airports such as LaGuardia, Newark and John F. Kennedy International Airport.

According to the Transportation Security Administration, 2,371,860 passengers passed through TSA checkpoints on Thursday, which is up more than 300,000 compared to the same weekday last year but still short of the 2,728,786 passengers who flew on the same day in 2019. As demand for air travel continues to increase, airlines have blamed bad weather and staffing shortages for the uptick in flight disruptions.

The almost routine delays and cancellations in airports across the nation have prompted the Biden administration and Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg to meet with airline CEOs to ask them what steps they’re taking to ensure a far smoother air travel experience over the upcoming July 4 holiday. “I let them know that this is a moment when we are really counting on them to deliver reliably for the traveling public,” Buttigieg told NBC News.

Following a disastrous Memorial Day Weekend that saw approximately thousands of flights canceled, experts are blaming the airlines themselves for the headaches and warn that the widespread cancellations are likely here to stay for the summer.

For the latest insight on travel around the world, check out this interactive guide.

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