Vacationers with flights scheduled into and out of domestic theme park locations or cruise line port areas may want to pay some extra attention to their flight status for the time being.
As the United States’ partial government shutdown continues, staffing issues have been reported at certain U.S. airports — including Orlando International Airport — which have already resulted in delays for some travelers.
Earlier today the Federal Aviation Administration temporarily halted all incoming flights to New York’s La Guardia Airport, citing staffing issues due to an increase in sick leave taken by air traffic controllers. Arriving flights at the location were delayed up to an hour and a half in some cases. Philadelphia and Newark also saw delays due to the issue, with Philadelphia International Airport flights delayed up to an hour and 15 minutes and Newark International Airport flights experiencing 45-minute delays.
The FAA released a statement on Twitter advising travelers to “monitor air traffic at fly.faa.gov” and “check with airlines for more information.”
The two locations referenced were air traffic control centers in Washington and Jacksonville. While New York-area airports seem to be the most heavily affected, Florida airports like Orlando, Miami, and Tampa suffered delays as a result of planes being held at the gates.
More airports may be affected as the shutdown continues. Transportation Security Administration workers have also been affected by the shutdown, which could have an impact on wait times at TSA security checkpoint lines.
While the partial government shutdown remains in effect, travelers should stay up to date on any potential changes to their flight schedules by frequently checking with their airlines, related airports, and the FAA.
Image: Greater Orlando Aviation Authority