It hasn’t been a great year for airlines or travelers, and now, it looks like it’s about to get worse.
The story feels like a potential plotline for an epic Airplane 3. Apparently, American Airlines had a computer glitch that gave every single one of their pilots vacation over Christmas week, the busiest travel time of the year. That’s right, not just Christmas Eve or Christmas Day, but the. entire. week. Now, the largest U.S. carrier is scrambling to find pilots so that they don’t have to cancel more than 15,000 flights and ruin hundreds of thousands of families’ holidays.
The situation would be funny if the potential repercussions weren’t so tragic. Having to cancel flights due to inclement weather is one thing, but how do you let this happen, and on such a large scale? And how do you not realize it until less than a month before Christmas?
Having just come home from a great Thanksgiving with my own family, I know how heartbroken I’d be to have missed out on a holiday due to this kind of error.
BREAKING: American Airlines says computer glitch allowed all pilots to take vacation over Christmas week. Now union says thousands of flights are in jeopardy of cancellation. Americans says they’re offering 1.5x pay for pilots to fill in and expect to resolve the issue.
— Sam Sweeney (@SweeneyABC) November 29, 2017
Here’s hoping American can quickly resolve this, and that some pilots will step up and take the 1.5x salary the airline is offering, because for millions of Americans, canceled flights equal canceled Christmas.
PS: American Airlines, if you’re looking for a pilot, may I recommend Kareem Abdul Jabbar?