JetBlue Airways has canceled flights into mid-January as it contends with crew shortages due to the surging Omicron variant, the airline confirmed late Wednesday.
According to USA Today, about 1,280 of the airline’s flights have been canceled over the next two weeks and JetBlue said, “there is a high likelihood of additional cancellations until case counts start to come down.”
“Like many businesses and organizations, we have seen a surge in the number of sick calls from Omicron,” JetBlue said in a statement to the outlet. “To give our customers give as much notice possible to make alternate plans and reaccommodate them on other flights, we are proactively reducing our schedule through January 13.”
JetBlue’s move is the latest disruption for travelers. As REVOLT previously reported, several other airlines canceled flights amid the rise in Coronavirus cases. Since Dec. 24, at least 8,000 flights have been canceled and more than 40,000 have been delayed to, from and within the country. The new Omicron strain of the virus is accounting for most of the positive cases in America, becoming the most dominant variant since the pandemic began.
“The nationwide spike in Omicron cases this week has had a direct impact on our flight crews and the people who run our operation. As a result, we’ve unfortunately had to cancel some flights and are notifying impacted customers in advance of them coming to the airport,” United Airlines wrote in a statement last week. “We’re sorry for the disruption and are working hard to rebook as many people as possible and get them on their way for the holidays.”
Customers who want or need to change flights can do so free of charge for all flights through Jan. 31. The airline has waived its usual change and cancellation fees for Blue Basic fares. Other JetBlue fares don’t have such fees.