Tens of thousands people in the US had their Memorial Day weekend plans come to a screeching halt after weather disruptions and staffing issues forced airlines to cancel hundreds of flights and delay thousands more.
On Sunday, 403 flights within, into, or out of the country were canceled before 6 p.m. EST, after more than 550 were scrapped Saturday, according to the flight tracking site Flight Aware. At least 102 flights scheduled for Monday had already been canceled by Sunday evening.
Some 3,077 flights were delayed Sunday, down from 5,204 on Saturday.
“I will never take JetBlue again! I will walk before I fly JetBlue!” Mussawir Sadiqi, an architect from Buffalo told The Post while killing time at John F. Kennedy International Airport.
The 32-year-old was supposed to be in Istanbul by Sunday for vacation with his fiancé.
But his flight from Buffalo to JFK was delayed Friday night and he missed his connection to Turkey despite sprinting through the airport’s terminals.
He hasn’t been able to find a hotel room to stay in while he waits. Worse, his required COVID-19 PCR test has expired.
“I’ve been in an airport for 48 hours now, not sleeping or showering thanks to Jetblue!” Sadiqi said.
“I called late last night, I said, any room, please?! They are all full because of the delays,” he fumed.
Sadiqi added: “I’m spending 3 days of my vacation at the airport and I’ll be lucky to spend 4 days with [my fiancé] out of my 9 day vacation!”
JetBlue did not immediately return a request for comment.
Sadiqi wasn’t the only traveler stuck in limbo at the Queens airport.
Sinan Aktas, a waiter from Paris trying to get home to France told The Post that Delta Airlines didn’t alert him that his flight had been cancelled.
“I only wish Delta could have let me know they would be canceling the first flight! My girlfriend’s parents drove me two hours to the airport for nothing,” he said.
Delta has acknowledged the disruptions and faulted a series of issues that are disrupting summer travel plans.
“More than any time in our history, the various factors currently impacting our operation — weather and air traffic control, vendor staffing, increased COVID case rates contributing to higher-than-planned unscheduled absences in some work groups — are resulting in an operation that isn’t consistently up to the standards Delta has set for the industry in recent years,” Allison Ausband, the airline’s customer experience officer, said in a press release.
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