MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Instead of spending Christmas day with family, many travelers found themselves stuck at the airport.
More than 950 flights within, into or out of the United States were cancelled, at least 350 more than on Christmas Eve. Airlines point to staffing shortages fueled by the Omicron variant. It comes as holiday air travel is returning to pre-pandemic levels.
As of early Saturday afternoon, more than 60 flights into and out of Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport were canceled.
So far 63 flights into and out of MSP International Airport have been cancelled so far today. Travelers I spoke with are trying to take it in stride this Christmas Day, finding alternative routes or delaying their trip. @WCCO pic.twitter.com/yyqW441yKN
— Kirsten Mitchell (@Kirsten_TV) December 25, 2021
If you plan to fly Sunday out of the Twin Cities, Duluth or Fargo, there could be some travel delays because of the snow. Those issues could continue through Monday morning followed by another chance of snow and delays on Tuesday.
WCCO’s Kirsten Mitchell spoke to delayed travelers at MSP Airport.
“We are not usually the family that travels on Christmas, so this is our first time and maybe our last,” Minneapolis resident Adam Venom said.
Adam and Lauren Venom hoped they would be in Los Angeles with their family, headed to Disneyland.
“We thought the best bet would be to come here and figure it out cause wait times on the phone are like an hour and a half,” Lauren Venom said.
Tamera Robinson and her husband’s flight to Hawaii was also cancelled. They we’re going to meet their six children for a long awaited reunion.
“I booked this trip in February and we had no idea we’d still be dealing with COVID, it’s crazy,” Robinson said.
Both families found new flights, just with a few detours.
“It is what it is and we’ll have a great time when we get there, it’s just you never know,” said Robinson.