According to CNN, American Airlines has canceled another 250 flights as of November 1, adding to hundreds of flights canceled over a four-day period that began last week.
The airline reportedly canceled 1,058 flights on October 31, which is estimated to be about one in every five of its originally scheduled flights. This comes after the 548 flights already canceled on October 30 and 343 flights on October 29.
In overview, approximately 10 percent of the airline’s mainline flights were canceled over four days, leaving thousands of passengers stranded and left to their own devices.
American COO David Seymour said in a memo that the airline is “proactively canceling” flights to help provide “scheduling certainty for our crews” after increased winds and lousy weather hit main hubs, including Dallas-Fort Worth on October 28, which left flight crews out of position.
American claims that they are working to stabilize the situation, and as of November 1, the airline said 1,800 flight attendants would be returning from pandemic time-off.
A month ago, Capt. Dennis Tajer, an American Airlines pilot and spokesman for the Allied Pilots Association, said that the union is wary of how airlines will handle the massive influx of passengers that will fly during the November and December holiday periods.
“We want that flying to get done, but we don’t want tickets sold that can’t be fulfilled,” he said. “Are they biting off more than they can they chew?”
After the pandemic struck, air travel became minimal, forcing airlines to be offered staff buyouts, early retirement packages, and unpaid leave in efforts to cut costs and remain afloat. Now that airlines are back up and running at total capacity, they are urgently hiring employees and bringing back as much staff as possible.
Despite this, some unions believe that specific service disruptions are due to poor management choices and faulty scheduling programs. They also claim that the issues won’t end anytime soon.