U.S.|More than 1,000 Christmas Eve flights are canceled astir the globe due to the fact that of Omicron.
- Dec. 23, 2021Updated 11:53 p.m. ET
Thousands of would-be travelers received the aforesaid troubling connection connected Thursday: a last-minute cancellation of their Christmas Eve formation due to the fact that of the caller spike of Omicron cases.
United Airlines canceled astatine slightest 131 flights scheduled to permission dozens of airports connected Friday — on with 28 much that were expected to instrumentality disconnected connected Saturday, according to Flight Aware. Other airlines, including Delta, JetBlue and Allegiant, did the same.
In Australia, hundreds of flights were besides canceled astatine airports successful the large cities of Sydney and Melbourne arsenic coronavirus cases successful the state surged to their highest since the commencement of the pandemic.
The fig of cancellations globally arsenic of Thursday evening added up to much than 1,500 arsenic of Thursday evening, the website showed.
It’s the latest stroke to the holiday season caused by the caller and highly transmissible Omicron variant, which present accounts for more than 70 percent of caller coronavirus cases. Nearly 170,000 radical are investigating affirmative everyday, a 38 percent summation implicit the past 2 weeks, according to The New York Times’s coronavirus tracker.
In its statement, United said that Omicron’s “direct interaction connected our formation crews and the radical who tally our operation” led to the cancellations.
Crew members had been calling successful sick, according to spokesperson Joshua Freed, who said that United alerted customers arsenic soon arsenic it could. And portion Mr. Freed doesn’t expect the hose volition cancel much flights, it remained a possibility.
“We are truly managing this time by day,” helium said. “There whitethorn beryllium immoderate much formation cancellations for Saturday. It’s possible.”
Dozens of customers took to societal media to aerial their grievances astir the last-minute cancellations, including John Ferris who tweeted: “You’ve got beryllium kidding me. And determination are seemingly nary disposable flights for days. Ba humbug.”
In its statement, the hose said it is moving to rebook arsenic galore radical arsenic imaginable successful clip for the holidays.