American Airlines Continues to Cancel Flights into Monday after Weekend Woes
Widespread travel woes for American Airlines continued on Monday with more than 300 flights canceled, following a weekend that saw more than 1,800 of the carrier's flights canceled.
Frustrated travelers took to Twitter, complaining of flights canceled multiple times and being stranded far from home. Beyond cancellations, American Airlines delayed more than 190 flights, according to flight tracker FlightAware.
Monday's issues come on the heels of massive problems over the weekend in which the airline was forced to cancel more than 1,800 flights, according to reports, including more than 1,000 on Sunday alone, or about 36% of its schedule.
Flight cancellations started on Friday, with the airline blaming staffing shortages and bad weather, according to a company letter from COO David Seymour shared with Travel + Leisure. Seymour noted severe winds at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, where the airline is based, forced the carrier to cut arrival capacity by more than half. That was compounded by bad weather elsewhere, resulting in staffing issues.
"This weather drove a large number of cancellations at DFW, as we could only use two runways instead of the usual five that handle our operation," Seymour said in the letter. "With additional weather throughout the system, our staffing begins to run tight as crew members end up out of their regular flight sequences."
Seymour added the airline was "proactively canceling" flights to "minimize any inconvenience as much as possible."
The airline said it was addressing staffing issues with Monday's return of nearly 1,800 flight attendants from leave. Seymour added more than 600 newly hired flight attendants would start by the end of December.
"Our team members are continuing to take great care of our customers and we anticipate getting through this brief irregular ops period quickly with the start of a new month," Seymour wrote, adding, the airline "already began ramping up hiring in Reservations so more team members will be in place for the holiday season."
American Airlines' problems come just weeks after Southwest experienced similar issues, canceling more than 2,000 flights and blaming weather and air traffic control issues.
Alison Fox is a contributing writer for Travel + Leisure. When she's not in New York City, she likes to spend her time at the beach or exploring new destinations and hopes to visit every country in the world. Follow her adventures on Instagram.