Spirit Airlines has been canceling a multitude of flights across the country over the past 24 hours. The carrier denies any rumors that the issues have been caused by pilot and cabin crew strikes and states that the cancelations, affecting hundreds of people stranded in Florida, are due to weather and operational challenges.
Spirit Airlines has canceled hundreds of flights over the past 24 hours, leaving many frustrated passengers. Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying
No strike, Spirit says
From Sunday evening, US ultra-low-cost carrier Spirit Airlines has canceled several flights out of major cities. The cancelations have left hundreds of people stranded and scrambling to get rebooked, some reportedly waiting up to 12 hours to get through to a customer service agent.
Rumors of pilot strikes appear to have circulated among the frustrated passengers. In a statement to Simple Flying, Spirit vehemently denies this and said the airline is not experiencing any work action from any group of employees. A spokesperson for the carrier also shared the following.
“We’re working around the clock to get back on track in the wake of some travel disruptions over the weekend due to a series of weather and operational challenges. We needed to make proactive cancellations to some flights across the network, but the majority of flights are still scheduled as planned.”
Hundreds of people are waiting for assistance at the Orlando International Airport after @SpiritAirlines cancelled dozens of flights.
The line at the ticket counter spans the terminal.
Coming up at 5:30, you’ll hear from angry passengers. pic.twitter.com/LcDytcHn2y
— Treasure Roberts (@News6Treasure) August 2, 2021
The airline also said it understands how frustrating it is for customers to have their plans changed so quickly and advised them to actively monitor their emails and flight statuses before heading to the airport.
Spirit did not provide details on the operational challenges. Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying
Florida airports heavily affected
The airports most severely affected by Spirit cancellations over the course of Sunday and Monday were Orlando and Fort Lauderdale, Florida, with the latter seeing 34 out of 37 cancelations on Sunday coming from the ULCC. However, similar situations have been reported in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and Atlantic City, New Jersey.
No further details on the nature of the ‘operational challenges’ were provided, other than that they were similar to those that have plagued other airlines such as Southwest and American Airlines over the summer.
American Airlines canceled over 500 flights over four days in June. Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying
Cancelations due to staff shortages
In late June, Southwest canceled over 700 flights due to summer storms. American Airlines also canceled over 500 flights over a four-day period due to staffing shortages, maintenance, and other issues. The carrier then proactively canceled 1% of its entire July schedule to give it more wiggle room in the case of disruptions due to weather conditions such as harsh storms.
While airlines have been busy rehiring or hiring staff after the mass layoffs during the height of the crisis, many carriers are still not capable of covering the needs of a quickly recovering US domestic air travel market.
Have you or anyone you know been affected by the cancelations over the past two days or earlier this summer? How has the communication from the airline been? Leave a comment below and let us know.
Article Source simpleflying.com