Airlines struggle to meet travel demand, cancel flights due to lack of workers

Thousands of flights were canceled over the weekend of June 19 and Father’s Day as US airlines faced a shortage of pilots and staff – even as air travel soared for the summer season.

More than 2.4 million people passed through checkpoints on Friday, the busiest day of the year, according to the Transportation Security Administration.

However, 1,100 flights were canceled that same day, and more than 850 flights were canceled on Saturday, according to the Associated Press. Hundreds more flights were canceled on Sunday, according to preliminary data.

Major airlines say they are cutting daily flights to certain destinations because they were unable to replace employers who quit during the height of the coronavirus pandemic.

Last week, Delta Airlines pilots wrote an open letter to passengers asking them to be patient as the carrier strives to meet growing demand.

“We have been working over the weekend flying record overtime hours to help you get to your destination,” the letter says. “At the current rate, our pilots will be flying more overtime hours this fall in 2022 than in all of 2018 and 2019 combined, our busiest years to date.”

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