If you’ve done any airline travel recently, you’ve probably noticed more delays and cancellations than usual. You aren’t alone- it’s a widespread problem that’s impacting domestic and international flights. These complications can happen for a variety of reasons from poor weather to lack of adequate staff.

Here’s what to know about the FAA’s actions, and what they portend for airline travel in the New York, New Jersey and Washington D.C. areas.

The FAA Hopes to Combat Staffing Shortages

As reported by CNN, the Federal Aviation Administration is permitting airlines to cut back on their number of flights in the New York, New Jersey and Washington D.C. areas.

The airports impacted include LaGuardia and John F. Kennedy airports in New York, Newark Liberty Airport in New Jersey, and Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport in Washington D.C.

Reducing flights will hopefully ease the stress on air traffic controllers. In addition to the high-pressure nature of that industry, there aren’t enough people on staff. In fact, one of the major air traffic control facilities is only half-staffed. This facility is responsible for directing arriving and departing planes within the New York City area.

The Summer Flight Schedule Changes Have Had Positive Impact

Limiting the summer flight schedule has some positive impact, according to the FAA. Cancellations at both major New York airports, and Newark Liberty Airport toppled by 40 percent between May 15 and June 30, 2023.

The FAA announced their initiative to train and hire more air traffic control staff. However, applying to be an air traffic controller can be challenging. Processing applications can take upwards of six months. Also, applicants have to be younger than 31 and retire by 56, with scant exception.