LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — For those planning to travel for the holidays or expecting family in town, airlines are reporting they are ready for the busy holiday.
This summer, around 45,000 flights were canceled with one out of every four flights delayed. Things seem to be getting better and 8 News Now reached out to find out what changes airlines have made to make the experience better.
“I am cautiously optimistic we’re not going to see the same airline meltdown we saw this past summer,” Scott Keyes of Cheap Flights said.
Domestic airlines are hoping for a smooth Thanksgiving travel week and they have adjusted schedules and hiring needs to meet current flight demand.
Southwest Airlines told 8 News Now that “to support operational performance and reliability, Southwest hired more than 15,700 new employees this year. We’ve taken steps this year to bolster flexibility and options for customers including flight credits that never expire.”
Airlines for America, which lobbies for Delta, United, and American Airlines said, “there are 10% more pilots working for A4A carriers now than pre-pandemic.”
President and CEO of Frontier Airlines, Barry Biffle, also has a recommendation for travelers.
“You should pack a little patience and show up a bit early, but I do expect staffing levels should be there across the chain, TSA, and business partners, I expect us to have smoother operations than we have had in the past,” Biffle said.
Travelers should expect flights to be full since the number of planes in the sky is still down about 15% to 20% compared to 2019.
For those who have not traveled in a while, the airport will be busier than before with larger crowds and potentially longer wait times for everything from parking to check-in, security screening, to food services.