Air India Express In Turmoil After Crew Goes On Mass Sick Leave; 78 Domestic & International Flights Cancelled

Passengers flying today have been notified to check if their flights have been affected before travelling to the airport.

by Nikitha Sebastian
Air India Express In Turmoil After Crew Goes On Mass Sick Leave; 78 Domestic & International Flights Cancelled

Air India Express, a budget airline subsidiary of Air India, has been hit with mass cancellations, disrupting travel plans for thousands. The airline grounded over 78 domestic and international flights on Wednesday, May 8th, citing a sudden surge in crew shortage due to sickness.

Crew Shortage Linked To Labour Dispute

Reports suggest that senior cabin crew members called in sick at the last minute, leaving the airline scrambling to find replacements. This unexpected shortage of staff resulted in the cancellation of flights, causing inconvenience and frustration for passengers.

Some industry analysts believe that ongoing labour disputes between the airline and its cabin crew could be the reason for the mass call-ins by passengers. The crew members have reportedly been demanding better working conditions, including improved pay and work schedules.

This incident could be a way for them to exert pressure on the airline to address their concerns. Air India Express, in a statement released on Wednesday, acknowledged the situation and expressed their commitment to minimising disruption for passengers.

An Air India Express spokesperson stated that they are engaging with the crew to understand the reasons behind these occurrences. They are also actively working to minimise the inconvenience caused to guests due to this issue.

Also Read: Air India Express To Add 24 More Weekly Flights On India-UAE Route During Summer Holidays

Potential Consequences Of The Disruption


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A post shared by Air India Express (@airindiax)

The airline has also outlined measures to assist passengers affected by the cancellations. Guests who are impacted will be offered a full refund or the opportunity to reschedule to another date, added a spokesperson. Airlines have notified passengers flying today to check if their flights have been affected before heading to the airport.

This incident highlights the vulnerability of airlines to crew shortages, especially when faced with disgruntled staff. It also raises concerns about passenger welfare and the potential impact on travel plans. This has likely caused thousands of passengers to miss connections, delay their destinations, and incur additional expenses. The airline will incur financial losses, including re-booking costs, compensation claims, and revenue loss from grounded flights. The inconvenience may damage the airline’s reputation and reduce future customer loyalty.

Chaos At Delhi Airport

The video shared on X (Formerly, Twitter) showed angry passengers at an Air India Express counter after the airline abruptly cancelled flights to Goa, Guwahati, and Srinagar. Frustrated travellers demanded answers and voiced their anger at the last-minute disruption to their travel plans.

“Ye kya tareeka hai! Kyu dekh rahe ho aap? Bewakuf bana rakha hai. Paagal bana rakha hai.” One user commented. “Flight cancellations without consideration for passengers’ urgency are a real problem. They should offer other options or inform people earlier so they can make other plans. Cancelling at the last moment causes a lot of trouble,” another user stated

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It remains unclear how Air India Express will address the concerns and resolve the situation raised by its crew. Passengers are advised to check their flight status regularly and contact the airline directly for any updates or re-booking options in the meantime.

Cover Image Courtesy: Wikimedia Commons

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