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October 1, 2022
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Travelers endure more than 1,300 domestic flights cancelations over the weekend

Travelers endure more than 1,300 domestic flights cancelations over the weekend

More than 1,300 flights were canceled Saturday and Sunday, according to the flight-tracking site FlightAware, marking another punishing weekend for travel.

Delays also totaled in the thousands over the weekend.

On Saturday, there were nearly 660 cancellations within, into or out of the United States, FlightAware reported. On Sunday, by 1 p.m., another nearly 740 flights had also been canceled, according to FlightAware.

Newark Liberty International, Chicago Midway International Airport and Chicago O’Hare International Airport were the three airports topping the list as having the most-canceled and most-delayed flights on Sunday, according to FlightAware.

Saturday’s delays climbed to nearly 7,250 within, into or out of the United States, according to FlightAware.

By 1 p.m. on Sunday, FlightAware reported nearly 3,000 delays within, into or out of the United States.

Southwest Airlines and United Airlines appeared to top the list of cancellations and delays for major domestic operators. Southwest canceled approximately 3% of its flights and delayed 12% of its flights, according to FlightAware. Meanwhile, United had canceled 3% of its flights and delayed 11%of its flights, FlightAware reported.

The delays come just days after the U.S. Department of Transportation announced it would consider extending the circumstances for which passengers would be entitled to refunds if their travel plans were disrupted.

Some of the proposed circumstances that could trigger refunds include an airline changing the arrival or departure airport, changing the arrival or departure time by more than three hours, or adding an additional layover.

A recent rise in cancellations has coincided with a slew of U.S. workers voluntarily exiting the workforce, often referred to as the “great resignation.”

Between 2011 and 2019, flight cancellations stayed stable and the rate at which flights were cancelled remained fairly low. The rate was between 1.1% and 1.8% in any given year between that period, according to FlightAware.

When the pandemic hit in 2020, that rate spiked to 5%. In 2021, it settled to 1.6% as vaccines became available.

Kalhan Rosenblatt is a reporter covering youth and internet culture for NBC News, based in New York.

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