The Current State of Air Travel

Sydney Rumpf, Photography

As weather gets worse and the new COVID variant spreads, commercial airliners and airports are some of the hardest hit. Flights are constantly being delayed or canceled and travelers are being stranded and left stuck, whether flying for fun or just trying to get home.

This is what happened to me and has happened and is happening to many other travelers throughout the US.

My first flight from Orlando was cancelled, so I was stuck for an extra day. The next day, however, I was able to board a flight and make it back home. However, it still wasn’t easy. My flights experienced delays, due to weather and crew changes, and I saw on the boards that many other flights were experiencing delays and cancellations as well. My second flight from San Antonio was supposed to leave at 7:50, but with delay after delay, we didn’t even leave the terminal until 9:15.

I saw a few people walk up to the board and gasp with shock and despair when they saw their flight was cancelled and I overheard people talking about when they were going to do because of a cancellation.

It wasn’t just that airport, either. According to the New York Post, since New Year’s Eve, there’s been over 1,000 cancellations a day, whether it be to the new omicron variant or to winter weather.

The cancellations aren’t all. Airports still have many COVID restrictions in place. You are still required to wear a mask all day, and with all the delays, that can be 12+ hours with only a few short breaks to eat and drink. Social distancing is in place in the airports, or at least it tries to be, but there are just so many people that it doesn’t work effectively. On airplanes, you still must wear a mask, but there’s no form of social distancing.

Traveling is never too easy, and the weather and COVID just make it worse. I wouldn’t recommend flying this time of year unless it’s necessary. It makes it easier on the airports and airlines, and you won’t have to go through the hassle of cancellations and delays