HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — TSA officials are checking huge numbers of travelers on Christmas Eve, levels not seen since before the coronavirus pandemic, but a recent spike in omicron cases is making it difficult for several major airlines to keep up.
United and Delta canceled over 100 Christmas Eve flights, but that didn’t dampen the holiday spirit at Bradley International Airport.
“We’re just excited to be able to get away as a family,” Coleman Levy of West Hartford said.
After the pandemic canceled last year’s holiday getaway, the Levys – grandma, grandpa, the kids, and grandkids – were eager to fly to Cancun together.
“We have to be protected,” Levy said. “We have to be smart. We’re all vaccinated, and we’re going to be out in the open fresh air”
Others spent Christmas Eve trying to get rebooked after Delta and United said they were forced to proactively cancel a combined nearly 200 flights across the country, pointing to the spike in omicron cases limiting crew availability.
Connecticut Airport Authority said it is not aware of any impact at Bradley. Boards showed several canceled Jetblue flights on Friday.
Brennan Brixey was eager to take a break from working the sub base in Groton to fly across the country for a California Christmas. He said he’s putting omicron’s fears aside because being with family is a risk worth taking after nearly two years of a pandemic.
“It’s is kind of sketchy out here,” Brixey said. “COVID is real. We just have to do our best. It’s important for all of us to get home for the holidays.”
If you’re flying out on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day or you’re expecting loved ones to arrive, you’re encouraged to call your carrier directly to see if that flight is still a go.