Now, you’re standing in a queue to get your baggage weighed. You’ve been trapped inside this airport for two hours. Your kid is grabbing at your leg, crying for the iPad, and doesn’t even want to go on this holiday. You’re desperately scrolling through your phone, trying to find that meditation app that you downloaded months ago. At this very moment, you hear an announcement. Your flight has been cancelled. You somehow snap your phone in half with your bare hands.
If this situation ever happens to you, you’re probably going to want someone to blame. Nay, someone to scream at. You’re going to want to know why this is happening to you, who’s ruined your day. However, while there’s no evil mastermind behind your delayed vacation, there are pretty interesting reasons as to why Australian airports are currently in such pandemonium. So here are those reasons, hopefully you can find some solace in them:
Demand Is Way Up
It’s school holiday season. They’re starting in South Australia and Tasmania, ending in Queensland and Victoria, and halfway done for NSW and the ACT. Virgin Australia told the ABC that the number of folks flying during these school hols was high. In fact, it’s 15% higher than in 2019. “Airports and airlines globally are experiencing huge demand as travellers return to the sky as pandemic restrictions ease,” said a spokesperson. It seems as if the airports just weren’t ready for this many hungry customers.
The Weather Has Been Awful
In NSW, its residents have been experiencing yet another ‘once in 100 years’ wet weather event. During a press conference on July 4, the Bureau of Meteorology’s Jane Golding said, “In the last 24 hours, some locations have received upwards of 100ml. And those areas are really stretching from Maitland in Newcastle down towards Brogers Creek in the Illawarra. Some locations have received upwards of 150ml.” They also noted, “At the moment, the focus area is very much along the Illawarra, through Sydney, into the Blue Mountains and the Central Coast area.”
There’s just no way that a state can get hit with that much rain without flights being delayed and canned. Moreover, according to Sydney Airport’s website, it’s the busiest airport in Australia, being used by 44.4 million passengers back in 2018. If this place experienced a major setback, do you really think that knock-on problems wouldn’t happen around a whack of Australia?
Too Many Sacked Staff
Okay folks, here’s the part of the article where we get to blame the airlines. In 2020, Qantas illegally fired around 2000 ground crew workers. Ian Smith, a member of the Transport Workers’ Union, told the ABC that if Qantas rehired these folks, there would be fewer issues. These workers could speed up the baggage handling process, resulting in there being less delays. Smith also declared, “There’s a lot of them that would love to come back and work for Qantas.”
Moreover, Smith stated that overall staff numbers were still lower than the beginning of 2020. So, major airlines, get your houses in order and start hiring more people. Thanks.
If you want to learn more about the current travel situation, then here are some *chef’s kiss* links: