ORLANDO, Fla. – As travel is ramping up for the Fourth of July holiday, staffing shortages are causing problems for some of the nation’s largest airlines.
According to FlightAware.com, 634 flights were canceled across the U.S. on Saturday and there were more than 730 cancellations on Sunday.
Delta Airlines was hit hardest by the cancelations, which the company said happened because of weather and employee absences.
“Delta teams continue to safely manage through compounding factors affecting our operation this weekend, including higher-than-planned unscheduled absences in some of our work groups, weather, and air traffic control constraints,” a Delta Airlines spokesperson said. “Canceling a flight is always our last resort, and we sincerely apologize to our customers for any disruption to their travel plans.”
Nadine Constabile was flying Delta out of Orlando on Monday. She works for another airline and said the entire industry is suffering from staffing shortages.
“It affects a lot of people,” Constabile said. “If I don’t show up to work, you can’t get on the plane. That’s basically how it works.”
The cancelations come after Orlando International Airport officials said travel will be near pre-pandemic levels for the Fourth of July holiday.
“Near record traffic this Fourth of July is an early indicator that the summer of 2022 promises to be extremely busy at Orlando International,” said Kevin Thibault, chief executive officer of the Greater Orlando Aviation Authority. “A combination of new routes and new airlines will help fuel even more growth in the months to come.”
According to officials, 1.7 million passengers are expected to arrive and depart at Orlando International Airport, which is only 34,000 short of the 2019 record.
The busiest day for the holiday travel period is expected to be July 2 with an estimated 145,900 passengers, officials said.
Anyone flying out of Orlando is urged to arrive at least two hours before their scheduled flight and check with their airline before traveling to the airport.