ROUNDUP 2: Travel to the festival quiet – flight cancellations due to sick pilots

Sunday, 12/26/2021 5:29 PM from


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The wing of an airplane at sunset (symbolic image).

BERLIN / WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) – Christmas travel in Germany ran without major disruptions this year. The situation on Deutsche Bahn trains and at the airports remained relatively calm over the holidays. However, several airlines around the world had to cancel flights because too many pilots reported sick. The USA in particular was affected.

On Sunday, Deutsche Bahn drew an initial positive balance of this year’s Christmas travel. “The Christmas traffic on the railway has been running smoothly so far,” said a company spokesman on Sunday. Most travelers were expected on Sunday evening and Monday. According to Deutsche Bahn, the number of bookings is higher than last year, but still 35 to 40 percent below the pre-Corona level. On Thursday, the first day of vacation in most federal states, as expected, more travelers used the Deutsche Bahn trains.

This year there will be a good 550,000 seats in Christmas traffic – 50,000 more than a year ago. From Wednesday to January 2, Deutsche Bahn has been using special trains on connections that are in high demand, for example between Berlin and Stuttgart or Munich and between Cologne, Düsseldorf and Berlin.


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– The USA in particular was affected. According to CNN, they were from

the cancellations on Christmas Eve and the two Christmas holidays affected around 1700 flights within, to or from the USA. CNN relies on the flight data website Flight Aware. In the USA, the Omikron variant is now dominant – the number of corona cases has recently skyrocketed.

On Saturday alone, the US airline Delta canceled almost 370 flights and justified this not only with Omikron but also with winter weather in parts of the USA. More than 300 flights should be canceled again on Sunday. “The nationwide accumulation of Omikron cases this week has had a direct impact on our flight crews and the employees who run our operations,” said United airline.

The Lufthansa (Lufthansa share) announced on the Thursday before Christmas that it would have to cancel six pairs of flights from the outward and return flights between 23 and 26 December because so many pilots had called in sick. It remains that the number of canceled flights has not increased further, said a spokesman for the German press agency on Sunday. In addition to a connection to Tokyo, the German airline also mainly affects US destinations such as Houston, Boston and Washington. The company did not want to speculate about a connection with Omikron, as Lufthansa would not be informed about the type of illnesses./red/DP/he


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