Commercial airlines worldwide canceled more than 4,300 flights over the Christmas weekend, as a surge in COVID-19 infections triggered by the omicron variant has created greater uncertainty for travelers during the year-end holiday season.
Airlines globally canceled at least 2,366 flights as of Friday (12/24). The Friday that coincides with Christmas Eve is usually one of the busiest days for air travel. According to the calculation results by the flight tracking site FlightAware.com, in addition to the thousands of flights that were cancelled, nearly 9,000 other flights had to be delayed.
The website shows that 1,616 flights on Christmas Day were canceled worldwide, along with another 365 that had been scheduled for Sunday (12/26).
According to FlightAware.com. in the same three-day period last year, there were more than 191,000 commercial flights.
Commercial air traffic in America and into or out of the country accounted for more than a quarter of flights canceled over the weekend, data from FlightAware shows.
United Airlines and Delta Air Lines were among the first US carriers to report a wave of weekend holiday cancellations, canceling nearly 280 combined flights on Friday, citing personnel shortages due to the COVID-19 infection. [my/pp]