If you’ve recently flown or tried to fly, something like this might have happened: your 13:00 flight became your 17:00 flight, it was a midnight flight, and then it was summarily cancelled. No explanation is given. The next flights are already fully booked, but they still have middle seats with two stopovers leaving next week, if that works for you.
We endured so much from airlines. Food on airplanes is now limited to crackers and a glass of soda. We pay exorbitant amounts to check luggage. Only some people can bring a handbag on the plane. We pay to choose our seat. By the way, it is a seat designed for someone who is 4’8” and 95 pounds. They tortured us in various ways.
We took care of this because they got us from point A to point B quickly and safely. Sometimes even very cheap. We accepted the continual lowering of service because they had something we wanted and only they could offer. But airlines are not meeting their part of the bargain. We miss meetings, events, family time and more because they can’t act together.
According to FlightAware, a website that tracks flight cancellations and delays, there were 1,629 delays and 631 cancellations “inside or outside the United States” on Sunday alone. It just happened at noon. Cancellations and delays become more likely as the day progresses.
What causes these frequent delays? Airlines say that demand is high after the pandemic. That’s probably true, but people are excitedly booking seats on flights that purport to exist only to disappear when it’s time to travel. It’s not the request’s fault.
Airlines have many other reasons. Them blame “Lack of staff at the Federal Aviation Administration.” Them point finger “air” or “unscheduled absences among staff”.
Then there is the pilot shortage. Why would there be a shortage of pilots, the average pilot screaming into the void. In one of the dumbest moves possible, pilots were encouraged to retire early to avoid being laid off during the pandemic.
However, this is where the poor performance of airlines becomes more important than a business that cannot provide quality service to the customer. Over the past two years, airlines have received more than $50 billion in pandemic relief. It’s our money. Congress tried to solicit answers on how that money was spent, but like all their other boondoggles, they were unable to find a clear answer.
This money was to protect jobs and save an industry. Pilots, who are so important to the flying event, should never have been encouraged from their job. Instead, the industry is in turmoil, staff still fired and the money is gone.
Despite the employment crisis, some airlines continued to require their employees to get the COVID-19 vaccine by 2022. Any employee with a vaccine exemption is put on paid leave, which seems like a bad use of taxpayer dollars, up to the airlines. finally softened. Anyone without an exemption was fired. It didn’t make sense, and now we’re all paying the price for it.
Transport Minister Pete Buttigieg recently canceled his own flight and had to travel from Washington to New York. Now he says his department may force airlines to hire more staff. This might work for some roles, but not the pilots, ahem, transportation secretaries. They really need to have experience and know what they’re doing. Buttigieg had no transportation experience before being selected for this role. A pilot cannot imitate exactly likewise until he does.
Perhaps the real lesson here is that the federal government should stop giving out free cash without any conditions, even in times of crisis. We hope that every elected official whose flight is delayed by two hours, six hours, or eventually cancelled, remembers that they paid this industry to treat us that way. Let’s hope they don’t do it again.
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