Booking a vacation abroad? Flyers take note – A post-pandemic travel boom is causing chaos at airports around the world.
The headwinds to international travel are moving faster than airlines can handle.
The result has been flight cancellations, lost baggage and dissatisfied travelers.
As the world opens up again, stories of missing bags and cheating to try and track them are becoming legends.
So far, Americans heading to Europe in the summer appear to be the most affected, but New Zealanders who had to change planes to get anywhere are not necessarily as smooth a process as they were before the pandemic. I’m starting to realize that it’s not.
“Due to changing technology and increased security, missing luggage is far less of a problem than it used to be,” said Savage, head of the E Tu union’s aviation division.
“But the pandemic has taken such a toll on the aviation industry that people are starting to experience something that used to be much more common: lost or missing bags.”
And — he predicts things will get worse for us as we head into the northern winters and tourists flock our way.
detail We’ll look at the myriad reasons that led to this situation, but basically it’s due to a lack of staff.
“At the moment there is a definite problem with the amount of packages that have not arrived in New Zealand,” Savage said.
“From the union’s point of view, the problem does not occur at Auckland Airport, but it does occur at international airports.
“The story I heard was that at one point one of the ground companies had about 900 bags that they were trying to reunite with passengers. Mistakes abroad, the problem of bags arriving after arrival, tracking passengers, tracking passengers and trying to reunite them with their bags, bags are piled up at the airport.”
He said the problems were mostly related to aviation closures due to lockdowns and labor market problems that arise as the industry begins to rebuild.
“There are serious hiring issues right now in the industry,” says Savage.
“There used to be lines of people waiting to join these companies, and now there are no lines.”
As a result, only one person was allowed to unload the 787 on a recent flight from Hawaii to Oakland. The person has since quit and found a new job at the airport.
Airlines are in debt, and many of those who used to work at airports as check-in staff, flight attendants, loaders, or ground support officers are being lured into better jobs with better pay and hours.
“So aviation employers need to raise salaries to try to attract people. .
“They are a barrier to employment, especially since they can’t take someone off the street and strap them to their baggage belts. No, I work at the border.”
Then there’s the current delay in getting a security card for many of the same reasons.
Besides, airline employees get sick more often or have to be quarantined.
“Every part of the system is under pressure and it has a knock-on effect.
What is Savage’s advice for travelers over the next six months?
“Travel light and make sure you have really good insurance just in case…and be patient with airport employees. But don’t bring it out to the flight attendants and wear it, ground staff often work under a lot of pressure.
“Get there early, be patient and make sure you mark up all your luggage properly….or don’t go abroad!
“Stay in New Zealand and enjoy New Zealand summer.”
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