Air Canada plans major flight cancellations this summer

TORONTO (AFP): Air Canada, the nation’s largest carrier, announced Wednesday major flight cuts for this summer amid high demand, staffing shortages and numerous delays at the country’s airports.

“Regrettably, things are not business as usual in our industry globally, and this is affecting our operations and our ability to serve you with our normal standards of care,” Michael Rousseau, the airline’s CEO, said in a statement.  

The airline will make “meaningful reductions” to its summer schedule “in order to reduce passenger volumes and flows to a level we believe the air transport system can accommodate,” he said, adding that it was “not an easy decision.

“The COVID‑19 pandemic brought the world air transport system to a halt in early 2020. Now, after more than two years, global travel is resurgent, and people are returning to flying at a rate never seen in our industry,” he continued.

But that rush to fly is causing “unprecedented and unforeseen strains on all aspects of the global aviation system,” he said.

The announcement comes hours after Transport Minister Omar Alghabra denounced “unacceptable” delays at airports.

“We’re currently working with our partners, including airports & airlines, to implement additional solutions to this global situation,” he said on Twitter.