Delays Linger As Air Travel Warms Back Up
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) – Air travel is slowly but surely getting back to normal at area airports.
As of late afternoon on Tuesday, LaGuardia had some departure delays of about a half an hour. Arrivals were also delayed, CBS 2′s Alice Gainer reported.
That’s a far cry from the widespread cancellations over the past couple of days.
“We’re trying to get to Chicago for the Ranger game tomorrow and our flight was scheduled for Monday. We had a cancellation on Monday, a cancellation for today and another cancellation for today,” Steve Fotinos of Long Island told Gainer.
Other travelers were hopeful the string of flight delays would be over Tuesday.
“I’ve had 7 flights canceled,” tourist Nick Menicucci said. “I’ve been traveling since Sunday.”
But others, like the Meza family, will have to stick it out for another couple of days. They can’t get a flight back home to Texas until Thursday morning, Gainer reported.
“Last night, we stood in line for five hours trying to get our flight switched and this was the soonest flight out for us. Everything’s booked,” said Adele Meza.
Delays and cancellations were still scattered on various airline departure boards, Gainer reported Tuesday evening.
Despite a hellish few days, many are patting themselves on the back for keeping their cool.
“Everyone is frustrated so lets not add to it,” Menicucci said.
LaGuardia canceled 73 departures and 68 arrivals on Tuesday as of 5 p.m.
The airline stopped flights entirely on Monday at Newark, John F. Kennedy International and LaGuardia airports and at Boston’s Logan International Airport at 5 p.m.
The plan was to allow for 17 hours for the company to rest crew and time to service aircraft.
At LaGuardia, airport employees spent the morning Tuesday cleaning up collapsible cots and pillows that were given out to stranded passengers overnight.
“Frustrated, but I’ve seen people struggling more than I have,” said traveler Ling Gu.
JetBlue passenger Julia Moron has been desperately trying to get home to Houston for days.
“I’ve been stuck here between JFK and now LaGuardia since Thursday,” she said.
She spent four days sleeping at baggage claim and motels, trying to find a way home. She was hoping Tuesday would be her lucky day.
“I was able last night at JFK at 2 in the morning to go to the American Airlines counter, and they were able to find a ticket for tomorrow morning,” Moron said.
The airline was fully operational by Tuesday afternoon. JetBlue said if your flight was canceled, you can rebook it or request a refund online.
JetBlue wasn’t the only airline impacted by the bitter cold.
Southwest Airlines Co. suspended flights at Chicago’s Midway Airport around midday Monday and canceled more than 100 of its planned 230 daily departures there.
American Airlines also said that biting temperatures in Chicago were so cold, some of the fuel and the de-icing liquids for the planes have actually frozen.
American said it’s offering travelers the option to change their flights without penalty if traveling to, through or from certain airports.
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