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Don’t blame the ones who showed up: Pilot shortage driving airline reliability woes this summer

  • June 24, 2022
  • 1. Pilot ranks thinned at most airlines early in the pandemic.
  • 2. Low staffing is causing airlines to cancel flights.
  • 3. Carriers are trying to staff back up as quickly as they can, but it’s a time-consuming process.

It’s been a tough summer for air passengers in the U.S.

Many days have seen thousands of flight delays and cancellations, and airlines are taking longer to get their operations back on schedule when things go wrong.

A shortage of pilots, while not the only reason, is a major factor. Airlines reduced staffing when demand for flights plunged early in the pandemic, and now they’re struggling to bounce back as people start traveling at pre-COVID frequencies again.

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