At least 155 short-haul flights have been cancelled just in time to ruin people’s plans for the Platinum Jubilee Bank Holiday weekend. Holidaymakers have had an incredibly stressful few weeks with huge queues, long delays and cancelled trips.
Airports and airlines cut too much of their workforce during the Covid pandemic, leaving the industry too short-staffed for the current travel demand.
The chaos reached a climax this week as staff struggled to cope with those taking advantage of the half-term break and the four day Bank Holiday weekend.
EasyJet cancelled 31 flights from Gatwick to destinations including Bologna, Italy, Barcelona, Spain, Prague, Czech Republic, Krakow, Poland and Edinburgh.
British Airways axed 124 flights at Heathrow, but the airline says passengers were given advance notice.
TUI Airways previously announced it would be cancelling six flights a day from Manchester Airport for a month. This is a quarter of the company’s schedule.
Some airlines, including EasyJet, TUI, Ryanair, Wizzair, and British Airways, have dedicated trackers. Today’s cancellations come after a TUI pilot had to call the police to help disembark a plane ’abandoned’ on the runway for hours.
Just one day later, footage emerged of police telling passengers waiting to board a TUI flight from Manchester to Greece that their holiday was cancelled and they had to go home.
A mother also said her little girl was left ‘exhausted and in tears after the airline cancelled their flights home from Cyprus twice. The ‘carnage’ caused has left companies locked in a blame game with the Government.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps reportedly spent months warning the travel industry to be prepared for a sudden increase in demand. But he said that firms continued to ‘seriously oversell flights and holidays relative to their capacity to deliver’.