Nearly 800 U.S. flights were cancelled Wednesday morning as airlines struggled to deal with a surge in passengers. File Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI | License Photo
June 28 (UPI) -- More than 800 flights in the U.S. have been canceled as of Wednesday morning, as airlines prepare for a surge of passengers ahead of the holiday weekend.
Wednesday's numbers are still an improvement from Tuesday, when nearly 10,000 flights were canceled or delayed. Inclement weather and staffing shortages have been blamed for the problems.
Data from flight tracker FlightAware showed that United led the way with 412 flight cancelations, followed by JetBlue with 91 canceled flights, Republic Airways with 80 canceled flights, and Delta with 62 canceled flights as of 2 p.m. EDT.
Delta CEO Ed Bastian said Tuesday that things are better than they were last summer. But he conceded in remarks to investors that his airline "still [is] not running as optimally as it needs to run. We have improvements we can make. Substantial improvements, over where we were last summer."
The onslaught of delays comes after the Biden administration announced a plan last month, to set up new federal protocols that would for the first time require all commercial airlines to compensate passengers for controllable cancellations or significant delays.
The strategy would force airlines to provide cash refunds and expanded perks when stranded passengers accrue extra expenses for things like meals and hotels.
Currently, no airliner in the country is required to offer reimbursements for meals, lodging, and rebooking during flight delays caused by routine issues such as mechanical problems.
"You deserve to be fully compensated," Biden said. "Your time matters. The impact on your life matters."