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Summer 2022: My Flight Experiences

Summer 2022: My Flight Experiences

There has been a lot of talk about traveling this summer.  Mostly catastrophizing  just how bad it would be.  It was predicted to be the perfect storm of post-pandemic revenge travel and understaffing of airlines due to reductions during COVID and record low unemployment rates.

The Daily, a podcast from the New York Times, released an episode called The Summer of Airline Chaos.  The postmortem declared that it was bad but not actually that much worse than normal:

So, look, this summer is bad. Flight cancellations, flight delays are both up by about 1/3 from the summer of 2019. But if you look at the actual hard numbers, in 2019, just under two out of every 100 flights was cancelled. This time around, it’s just over two. That’s still a pretty small share. When it comes to delays, about 19 percent of flights were delayed in 2019. This year, it’s up to about 24 percent. So it is worse, but this is kind of looking like a bad summer, but not a drastically bad summer.

This summer I spent five weeks traveling; including a total of 15 flights across 11 airlines.  Only four of those flights had a departure or arrival in the United States: two international flights and two domestic.

CANCELLED – Of those 15 flights, three were cancelled:

DELAYED – Of those 15 flights, four were delayed by at least one hour but no more than two hours.

ON TIME – Of those 15 flights, seven were on time (give or take 20 minutes).

So with my small sample size of flights over the summer, my experience was actually worse than the average.  I am guessing that the statistics quoted in The Daily were for domestic US flights where mine were mostly international; so not really apples to apples.

A few notes:

Overall, I had expectations that my travel would be badly impacted by all the challenges of the 2022 Summer travel season.  And my travel was disrupted.  However, due to my expectations, to be honest it didn’t seem as bad as it looks on paper.

Probably the worst flight cancellation was the American Airlines flight from DFW to Vegas as we had to sit on a hot airplane for two hours before being told our flight was cancelled, deplaning, and returning to the terminal to be booked back on my originally booked flight.

None of the cancellations or delays involved me having to overnight in an airport or cancel hotels.  I always ended up at my destination by the end of the day.

For me, flying during the Summer of 2022 had challenges but in the end was not so bad.

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