We all miss the holidays. As entry rules in many countries come to an end and travel concerns ease, many people are looking to leave this summer.
But the excitement of traveling abroad was overshadowed by chaos at the airport, flight cancellations and hours of queues. While travel restrictions may be easing, recent problems at airports are leaving many wondering if they should book tickets at all.
As airlines say it’s very difficult to predict what’s going to happen in the next 12 months, we went to the Routes Aviation Conference to see what they think about next year’s travel.
Is the chaos at airports continuing this summer?
The bad news is that the chaos seen at airports across Europe in recent months looks set to continue.
Airlines are working hard to shuffle their teams to have enough staff, but given the number of passengers. increase during the summer, the problem may get worse. And they say that this is mainly due to a lack of staff at the airports where they work.
Airlines For Europe managing director Thomas Reinart says there is no short-term solution. People left the industry during the pandemic for other sectors with higher pay, more satisfying jobs and better conditions. It is unlikely that they will return.
Since it takes time to train staff in roles such as security and baggage handling, which are currently lacking, the problem will not be resolved quickly.
Rafael Schwartzman, Regional Vice President of the International Air Transport Association for Europe, said the situation needed to be urgently addressed “in order not to disappoint customers.”
He added that it is “unprecedented” to see an airport asking airlines to cancel bookings and bookings in the future – as happened at some airports during the chaos earlier this year.
Why are there so many crashes at European airports?
Passenger numbers in March increased to 75% of what they were before the pandemic, according to IATA, signaling a recovery in the aviation industry. Schwartzman explained that this could mean a return to 2019 figures as early as 2023.
“It’s a sign of what’s to come this summer,” he said, predicting a very strong season. But it doesn’t look like some airports are ready for this increase in traffic.
Many industry experts pointed to Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam as an example of this unpreparedness. The airport authorities have warned that it will be very crowded through the summer due to a lack of staff.
Staff are threatening strikes over working conditions, lines have led to violence and Dutch flag carrier KLM has been forced to temporarily suspend ticket sales due to the chaos.
“People have been waiting for the holiday for two, and sometimes three years, and it should not be spoiled by unpreparedness,” Shvartsman added.
Why is the mess at the airport a big problem for tour operators?
For those who have booked their flights directly with airlines, delays and cancellations are often recorded…