The start of 2022 has seen consecutive days of thousands of delays and cancelations for major airlines. Reasons range from challenging weather to staff shortages, but how are all these issues impacting air carriers?
"It's really a perfect storm that we've seen this week for aviation in terms of major delays, and we continue to see that likely into this weekend," JP Dice, Meteorologist and aviation expert, says. "You were talking about ice in the Northeast and additional ice in the Midwest, thunderstorms in the Southeast. You put all that together, and we've got some major problems out there."
All the ongoing weather across the country is causing a ripple effect on air carriers.
Dice says that those impacts are causing stress for airlines and thousands of delays just this week alone.
"It's a frustrating time for passengers and even aircrews, the airlines, too, because it's a major financial factor for them. We've got airplanes they can't get from point A to point B. We have flight crews that can't get in position," Dice says. "We have major delays because of deicing visibility issues and icy runways. Really, this time of the year, we talk a lot about thunderstorms causing issues, but it is this time of the year when you get that winter weather that causes those major delays."
Airlines will continue to catch up after the delays and cancellations, but it could take some time. Dice doesn't expect improvements for at least the next several days, especially with other factors at play.
"The airlines are already coming off the initial COVID issues where they were shut down, and also had a lot of folks that were not working or trying to play major catch up. So, I don't see any improvements any time real soon, especially with this latest weather issue," he said.
And while you can try another airline to help, the chances are that they might have the same problem.
"But chances are what's affecting Delta or United probably will be affecting Southwest, too," Dice said. "It's going to be frustrating for a little bit."
Not only will you have to bring extra clothes for the cold weather, but packing your patience will be helpful until airlines can fully catch up.