MORE than 7.4 million holidaymakers have been hit by flight delays and cancellations so far this year – with the worst yet to come as the summer holiday season approaches.
At least 32,000 UK flights are expected to be disrupted over the six-week summer holiday, with 130,000 passengers expected to experience a flight cancellation, in additional to countless delays.
Experts have revealed the flights industry is “in crisis” as Brit airlines struggle to get passengers from A to B in shocking figures released today.
From January to April this year 7,402,600 people had to contend with a flight delay or cancellation instead of arriving at their destination without hassle.
That is equal to 115 flights per day suffering disruption, Air passenger rights company AirHelp explained.
Experts have blamed the holiday hell on chaos on many factors including the collapse of Flybmi and significant cancellations by Flybe, Heathrow drone chaos, WOW Air ceasing trading – leaving hundreds of passengers stranded at Gatwick airport – the grounding of all Boeing 737 MAX planes and flights being suspended at Stansted.
AirHelp claims more than 1,000 flights from London Stansted to Rome Airport Ciampino are predicted to suffer disruption over the summer, making it the most unreliable departure route from the UK.
“When over 15,200 passengers are affected by disruptions each day, it’s evident that UK airlines are struggling to deliver the service that passengers deserve,” said Paloma Salmeron, from AirHelp.
“People shouldn’t have to contend with delays and cancellations so frequently and we implore airlines to improve before we see a repeat of 2018 which saw UK flight cancellations soar by 86% compared to the previous year.
“Ahead of the peak summer travel season, we want to make people aware of their rights as air passengers.
“We encourage people to ensure they know what to do during a disruption and whether they are entitled to compensation from airlines.
“It’s also paramount that airlines are transparent with their customers as research shows that over 86% UK air travellers are unaware that they may be eligible for compensation following a disrupted flight.”
The shocking figures come as Brit airports are hit by strike chaos.
Holidaymakers have been warned to prepare for chaotic delays and more “unbelievable queues” after a trade union announced more strikes at one of Scotland’s busiest airports.
The first 12-hour strikes took place on Friday 7 and Monday 10 June at Aberdeen and Glasgow.
Unite members at Glasgow Airport are staging further walkout this morning and on June 21, 24 and 26.
Two further dates of industrial action at Aberdeen International Airport were announced yesterday.