For months, we’ve been raising the alarm… and now the Wall Street Journal has finally caught on as well…
Summer travel demand has soared over the last few weeks and airlines are scrambling to keep up. In the midst of this travel surge, Airlines are finally replacing “placeholder” schedules with real ones and, at the same time, adjusting seats back to normal (i.e. higher) fares. But with fewer destinations available to Americans due to continued coronavirus restrictions, the likelihood that airlines will be able to meet demand is slim.
What’s the difference between real and placeholder schedules you might ask?
Typically, airlines will load hypothetical flights into reservation systems six to nine months in advance. One to two months from the flight departure date, carriers will load in real schedules and adjust accordingly. Full flights will happen as scheduled, while partially booked flights are cancelled and passengers shifted to other flight itineraries. Before the pandemic, airlines had large amounts of historical data to accurately forecast schedules and minimize disruptions in service. Now, airlines must make decisions with a lot less data behind them. And many might not have enough planes ready for quick redistribution plans.
American, United, and Delta verified they will be publishing their real summer schedules in the next few weeks. Until then, there are steep discounts available!