5 reasons why airports collapse on Easter even though everyone knew it was a public holiday

Airports such as Manchester and Birmingham have been hit by disruption with huge queues and delays as well as Covid flight cancellations over the Easter holidays – we take a look at what’s causing the chaos

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Long queues continue to exist at Manchester Airport due to staff shortages

British go further Easter Holidays were approaching chaotic scenes at major airports including Manchester, Birmingham and Heathrow in recent weeks due to staff shortages impacted by Covid.

Some passengers had to queue for airport security for four hours while passing over the weekend 1,143 flights were canceled within a week according to data from aeronautical analysis firm Cirium – a 480% increase compared to the same period before the pandemic.

That contained easyJet cancels over 200 flights and British Airways also hit with a wave of cancellations. (If you are scheduled to fly, we have tour guides with us How to check if your flight has been cancelled as well as Your Refund Rights if you are affected).

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Paul Charles, CEO of travel consultancy The PC Agency, commented on the Cirium data: “This is a staggering number of flight cancellations caused by a cocktail of understaffing and Covid-induced staff shortages. The airlines certainly see a high demand for flights, but simply cannot cope with them due to a lack of resources. This is a nightmare situation for airlines and airports right now.”

Passengers are asked to do so arrive at the airport at the earliest possible time to allow for delays, while unions have warned the disruption could last for months.

So what is causing all the disruption? We take a look at five key factors causing chaos at UK airports.

1. Shortage of staff due to Covid

while there is one “Living with Covid” planCoronavirus is still widespread – including Nine new symptoms be identified.

Covid-related illnesses have caused staff shortages in all businesses, including airports and airlines. In fact, easyJet has said this is the main reason why the budget airline has had to cancel hundreds of flights in recent days.

Airports experience staffing shortages in everything from airport security staff to ground handlers, which slows down the process itself and causes delays.

This week UK airports have seen chaotic queues and long delays



Passengers face huge queues and delays at airports


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Tired passengers have stamped the growing chaos Manchester Airport an “absolute disgrace” with huge queues and delays of several hours, putting many at risk of missing flights.

One passenger, Steve Blear, called the scenes “chaos” and estimated that just before 5 a.m. he was waiting in a line of about 1,000 people outside the airport. Once inside, he said there’s “confusion with people not knowing where to check in and where to queue.”

2. The lifting of travel restrictions

Have holiday hotspots like France, Spain, Portugal and Greece eased their travel rules in time for Easter to make it easier for holidaymakers.

Countries often announce easing of travel rules days before restrictions are lifted – Malta, for example, has announced It reopens to unvaccinated Brits in a week – and this is usually followed by a flood of bookings.

The British are facing significant delays



But that means airports and airlines aren’t getting a major warning to prepare for the influx of travellers.

A spokesman for Manchester Airport previously said of the disruption: “The lifting of all travel restrictions after two years, combined with the start of the summer travel season, has resulted in a rapid increase in passenger numbers, placing a huge strain on our operations.”

3. A flood of vacationers

In just the last few weeks, countries have begun to ease their travel restrictions on British holidaymakers, with many Brits choosing to holiday in the UK rather than travel abroad.

In some cases holiday hotspots such as France and Italy were only open to fully vaccinated Brits without quarantine, but announced changes in time for Easter to also welcome unvaccinated or partially vaccinated travellers, albeit still with restrictions such as Covid testing .

During the pandemic, when a country has relaxed its rules, there has usually been a surge of people booking last-minute getaways, whether for holidays or to be reunited with loved ones for the first time in months/years be.

Malta, for example, has announced this It reopens to unvaccinated Brits in a week and how it is Holiday hotspot in April It is likely that there will be an influx of bookings.

Airports with staff shortages are not prepared for the onslaught of travelers.

4. Layoffs due to the pandemic

The pandemic wreaked havoc on the travel industry, with foreign travel bans for non-essential reasons, strict entry requirements and a general holiday freeze in general.

As a result, airports and airlines have been forced to downsize their workforces, including cabin crew, pilots, ground handlers and other employees.

The impact is still being felt, especially as last-minute relaxation of rules has seen holidaymakers rush back for short breaks.

A Manchester Airport employee told the Manchester evening news : “It’s very understaffed at the moment, things are fiendish. The whole working environment is shocking. A lot of people have been furloughed and laid off.

“All the companies at the airport just cut far too many staff, everyone panicked during the pandemic. Now everything is going up again, we can’t just bring the staff back.

“Many employees are threatening to leave and many have already left. We just lost a lot of employees – we had to hand in a lot of resignations in the last two weeks.”

Sharon Graham, general secretary of the Unite union, wrote on Twitter: “The aviation sector suffers from a chronic inability to attract new employees. It’s pretty simple – if you want to be successful, treat your workers with respect and don’t attack their #JobsPayConditions #Wednesday.”

5. A return to travel and airport rules

Navigating carry-on baggage rules at airport security is something most people haven’t done in years — and it only takes a few people going through security scanners a few times for forgotten liquids or other items, and the process slows down .

It’s not a big problem when the airport isn’t busy — but when there are already four-hour queues, all those extra minutes add up.

Steve Griffiths, Managing Director of London Stansted, said in a statement released ahead of Easter: “Although queues can sometimes be longer than people are used to, customers can definitely help us by arriving on time.

“We also want to remind people how to minimize unnecessary delays at the airport.

“The usual restrictions on liquids, sharps and electronics in carry-on luggage will still apply, and while hand sanitizer will also be allowed through security if it’s less than 100ml, it must also be in a clear, resealable bag with all other liquids. Therefore, we urge passengers to prepare properly before leaving home.”

Manchester Airport has also issued a reminder to travelers on Twitter detailing key safety rules including: liquids of 100ml or less and in a clear resealable bag; removing large electronic devices from your pocket; limit your carry-on baggage; Try to limit the number of security bins you use.

Are you affected by the delays or cancellations? Email us at webtravel@trinitymirror.com.

https://www.mirror.co.uk/travel/news/5-reasons-airports-crumbling-easter-26645987 5 reasons why airports collapse on Easter even though everyone knew it was a public holiday

Fry Electronics Team

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