BRITISH Airways has announced it will cut a further 10,300 short-haul flights until the end of October.
Would-be holidaymakers heading abroad during the summer hols have been warned to brace for more chaos ahead of their breaks.
The airline has already cancelled 17,600 flights for the summer season through to October – taking 2.8 million seats out of the market.
The new cancellations means around 13 per cent of their summer schedule has been scrapped.
Affected routes expect to be ones with “multiple departures a day” as well as quieter routes to reduce disruption. Long haul flights have not been affected.
The cancellations come after the government introduced an ‘amnesty,’ which is in place until Friday, that allows airlines to change flight schedules without having to pay a penalty fine.
This means they can move flights without having to lose the airport slots that they are allocated to fly from.
A Department of Transport spokesperson said it would help passengers find “alternative arrangements ahead of time” to prevent last minute cancellations which were seen during Easter and half term.
A British Airways spokesperson told Sun Online Travel that while “most of their flights were unaffected,” they were facing “significant challenges” seen across the whole aviation industry.
They added: “The Government recently decided to give the whole industry slot alleviation to minimise potential disruption this summer.
“While taking further action is not where we wanted to be, it’s the right thing to do for our customers and our colleagues. This new flexibility means that we can further reduce our schedule and consolidate some of our quieter services so that we can protect as many of our holiday flights as possible.”
Passengers affected will be offered a full refund, or can rebook with BA or an alternative airline.
And it’s not just BA cancelling flights – easyJet, TUI and Lufthansa have all been forced to cancel thousands of flights in recent days.
Much of the chaos is being caused by staff shortages as the travel industry picks up after Covid pandemic lockdowns.
And the situation is expected to get worse, with airline crew also voting to strike this summer.
More than 700 British Airways staff at London Heathrow have voted to strike while easyJet workers in Spain went on strike last week and have two more planned for later in the month.
And Ryanair cabin crew have already gone on strike across Spain, with more planned for July.
Here is how to claim compensation if your flight is delayed or cancelled.