Nightmare Weekend as 1,800 Airline Flights Canceled

Union strikes and bad weather made this weekend miserable for the airlines and their travelers with nearly 1,800 canceled flights within, into or out of the United States, according to FlightAware.

A large number of the cancellations were Qantas Airways flights as union strikes grounded the airline’s entire fleet. By Monday, Fair Work Australia – an independent work relations tribunal – granted an application by the Australian government, effectively ordering union employees to return to work, according to a statement by Qantas. A 21-day negotiation period is now in effect.

And while the repercussions were not fleet-wide, another cabin-crew strike forced Air France to cancel many flights during one of its busiest travel days from Oct. 29 through Nov. 2 – the All Saints Day holiday in France. Flights to Los Angeles, Washington and Atlanta were affected by the Air France strike.

Adding to the nightmare weekend for travelers was a severe snowstorm, which prevented departures and arrivals out of the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions, causing major delays and temporary airport closures. CNN reported that 1.3 inches of snow fell in Central Park in New York on Saturday, the most snow for Oct. 29 since record keeping began in 1869, and many parts of the Northeast saw upward of a foot of snow.

Pia Bergqvist joined FLYING in December 2010. A passionate aviator, Pia started flying in 1999 and quickly obtained her single- and multi-engine commercial, instrument and instructor ratings. After a decade of working in general aviation, Pia has accumulated almost 3,000 hours of flight time in nearly 40 different types of aircraft.

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