The past week may have been the first time in a very long time that many people have traveled. But in many places in the US, UK and Europe, the large numbers of people making so-called “vengeance trips” turned many trips into disasters.
Due to high turnout and staff shortages, many airports collapsed—anything axios called “a painful preview of summer”:
- US airlines canceled over 2,800 flights over the Memorial Day weekend, and some airlines have already cut up to 15% of flights over the summer to accommodate anticipated shortages. In the US, the problem was exacerbated by inclement weather in key destinations like Florida, where traffic was up to 150% above pre-pandemic levels – but also the occurrence of thunderstorms.
- A combination of the school holidays and the anniversary celebrations meant chaos swept London airports – hundreds of flights were canceled by British Airways, EasyJet and others over the course of the week.
- Technical failures at the Eurostar’s gates meant that queues had to snake out of London’s St Pancras station to wait hours to get through security and immigration checks.
- In Europe, one of the world’s busiest airports, Amsterdam’s Schipol Airport saw its security lines extend outside the building and urged people to stay home.
So how can travelers ease the expected summer chaos?
Brian Kelly, CEO of The Points Guy, said axios that people should avoid tight stops and book direct flights wherever possible – there is less room for error, either lost luggage or delayed connecting flights.
And it pays to use technology as much as possible to speed up the travel process, such as B. Registration in facial recognition systems to pass the security check more quickly.
The Telegraph also shared an important piece of advice to avoid many of the holiday week’s hassles – pack light and don’t put your bags in the hold.
Like many industries in the tourism sector, baggage handlers are suffering from staff shortages as many workers left the industry during the pandemic.
Andy Prendergast, national secretary of the UK GMB union, said: “That’s one less worry. If people can check in online and not take luggage with them, that will limit the disruption. It’s not a miracle cure, but it does reduce the likelihood of problems.”