Flight cancellations: 2,500 more flights canceled on Tuesday as travel disruption continues amid Omicron soar
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As of Tuesday, 2,500 more flights were canceled, including more than 800 within, to or from the United States, according to the tracking site FlightAware. More than 5,100 flights were delayed.
Monday was an even bigger nightmare for travelers, with more than 2,800 flights canceled and 11,000 delayed.
Cancellations occur at the busiest time of the year for air travel. The U.S. Transportation Safety Administration said it screened millions of people every day over the public holiday weekend, peaking at 2.19 million travelers on Thursday, December 23. More people passed through TSA checkpoints on Wednesday than on the same day in 2019.
Air travel was slower on Saturday due to flight cancellations: more than 1.53 million people passed security checks on Saturday.
“The national peak of Omicron cases this week has had a direct impact on our flight crews and the people who run our operations,” said a note from United obtained by CNN.
“We apologize to our customers for the delay in their vacation travel plans,” Delta said in a statement. “The folks at Delta are working hard to get them where they need to be as quickly and safely as possible on the next available flight.”
European airlines are also experiencing a small number of cancellations amid a record number of Covid-19 cases in several European countries.
German airline Lufthansa has announced it will cancel 10% of its winter flight program as the pandemic continues to hit the aviation industry.
In an interview with Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung last week, Lufthansa CEO Carsten Spohr said that due to a “sharp drop in bookings” the airline will have to cancel 33,000 flights from mid-January to February 2022, i.e. 10% of the group’s winter flight program.
Spohr’s comments were confirmed to CNN by the Lufthansa press office.
– CNN’s Pete Muntean, Arnaud Siad and Ramishah Maruf contributed to this report
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