Photo Credit: pexels-andrea-piacquadio
Southwest Airlines Flight Cancellations Affected Thousands Of Cruise Passengers This Holiday
As Travel Noire reported this week, Southwest Airlines flight cancellations have caused numerous bad experiences for passengers. Due to the airline’s mass cancelation of its flights, thousands of travelers hoping to fly are likely to be left in limbo a few days longer. The carrier had cancelled more than 10,000 flights since a winter storm struck the US last week. To make matters worse, thousands of passengers have not been able to fly to their cruise embarkation port or arrived too late.
Some passengers had to drive hundreds or thousands of miles by car or were lucky enough that a cruise ship delayed departure. Others have struggled to find their way home after disembarking from a ship.
Cruise Hive reported that many cruisers had been waiting for so long to take a cruise vacation following the global pandemic and the cruise industry shutdown. “Only recently have cruise lines really been fully back sailing, and it’s the first holiday season where the entire fleets are back sailing,” the website stated.
Cruise Hive talked to two teachers from Wisconsin who were due to sail on their Honeymoon cruise. But Southwest told them their flight had been canceled. Also, their luggage was stuck outside in the snow.
“The couple managed to make it back home by flying on a different airline while having to forfeit their cruise and having no clue what happened to their luggage.”
Filling The Void
The website revealed that some cruise lines have been filling the void wherever possible. The website said that Carnival Celebration‘s departure was delayed until 5 PM to give some guests a chance to reach the ship. “However, a reported 500 guests did not make it to the vessel in time. Most cruises that sailed in the last couple of days and those sailing in the days leading to the new year have been and will be affected to some degree.”
For those scheduled to sail in the coming days, the website advises finding an alternative way of making their way to the various homeports around the United States. According to Cruise Hive, this would be a viable option for those who booked their flights through the cruise lines. Those that booked independently will likely need to address their travel insurance.
“In one of the busiest times of the year for cruises, Southwest Airlines could not have chosen a worse time for this breakdown. The question is whether cruise lines can offer some flexibility for affected guests to rebook their cruises,” Cruise Hive reported.
Back To Normal
Southwest Airlines flight cancellations were reduced this Friday. The company announced that its operations are back to normal after being debilitated by storm, according to Reuters. The US carrier showed 41 cancellations, or 1% of total flights, on Friday, according to flight data tracker FlightAware. It is far less than the nearly 60% cancellations on previous days.
Chief Executive Bob Jordan said he was confident the airline would run a very tight operation on Friday and acknowledged a variety of factors that led to the company’s nosedive.
“Let me just be straightforward here: the storm had an impact but we had impacts beyond the storm that obviously impacted Southwest very differently,” Jordan said in an interview with ABC’s “Good Morning America.”
The company is now working to reimburse passengers for expenses such as hotels and car rentals in addition to refunding tickets.