Why are so many flights being canceled? Here’s what you need to know about your summer air travel plans



For many travelers, flying in skies hasn’t been as friendly lately due to the amount of delays and cancellations during this summer travel season.

Here’s what you need to know.

How many flights have been canceled since the start of the summer travel season?

Tens of thousands of flights were canceled or delayed throughout the June/Father’s Day weekend alone.

Experts say the problem is unlikely to get better.

“We probably haven’t seen the worst of it,” Kit Darby, founder of Kit Darby Aviation Consulting, told CBS MoneyWatch.

According to flight tracker FlightAware, there were 3,226 delays and 764 cancellations for flights within the US, and on flights arriving or departing from the US, at the time of publication on Thursday alone.

Why are there so many delays and cancellations for flights in this travel season?

There are a number of reasons why this happens.

One reason is the persistent shortage of pilots, flight crew and baggage handlers, as well as the shortage of aircraft.

Heading toward the end of the month, pilots are also reaching the maximum number of hours they are legally allowed to fly, according to CBS News.

Another factor adding fuel to the fire is the increase in bad weather, especially thunderstorms that have been occurring since Memorial Day weekend.

What should I do if my flight is canceled or delayed?

According to the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), there is no federal law that requires airlines to provide refunds or other forms of compensation when a flight is delayed or canceled.

But there are some things that you may qualify for or be entitled to depending on your situation.

“If your flight has a long delay, ask the airline staff if they will pay for meals or a hotel room. While some airlines offer these facilities to passengers, others do not provide any amenities for stranded passengers.” , according to the Department of Transportation’s website.

“If your flight is cancelled, and you choose to cancel your flight as a result, you are entitled to a refund of unused carriage – even for non-refundable tickets. You are also entitled to a refund of any baggage fees you have paid, and any extras you may have purchased, such as a seat assignment,” notes the website. Agency on the web.

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