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Air travel the week of Fourth of July will be 'excruciating,' expert says

"Besides having the normal crew shortages, you have crews timing out...," says Steve Cosgrove with Dynamic Travel.

DALLAS — Across the country, we’re hearing nightmare stories about travel this summer.

Delayed, canceled, or overbooked flights and missing bags -- you name it. 

Is there any relief in sight, and when will we see it?  

WFAA saw several frustrated customers at the American Airlines counter complaining about missing bags and others complaining about canceled flights.

“You mean to tell me that anyone else on that flight got their bags, I want to know,” said one customer. 

“Awful. I can’t express it. It’s really bad,” said Shiva MamillaBalli, who traveled from Hyderabad, India.

It took MamillaBalli 96 hours to get to Dallas Fort Worth International Airport from Hyderabad. He's feeling exhausted.

“I don’t have energy to talk,” said MamillaBalli. 

Once he got to London, there were more delays. Back in the states, he sat through four more cancellations and delays. 

“I have been traveling from JFK to here for two days,” said MamillaBalli. 

Steve Cosgrove from Dynamic Travel and Cruise says the week of 4th of July will be excruciating. 

“Besides having the normal crew shortages, you have crews timing out. Meaning the crews are restricted by FAA and union contracts in how many hours they can work a month,” said Cosgrove. 

He said travelers won’t be seeing any relief until the fall. 

Off-camera, airline officials told WFAA that standard tips, like booking early and getting to the airport on time, don't matter right now. Crews want people to know, they’re doing the best they can to get you to your destination safely.  

On Wednesday, there were at least 520 flights canceled and more than 1300 delayed, according to Flight Aware. 

Across the board, airlines are trying to hire more pilots and employees.

“There is a whole training process that goes on there. It’s not just something where you flip a switch,” said Cosgrove. 

As bags were piling up, customers lined up to find out where their important belongings were located. 

“We have some documents, because I’m a business man, and tomorrow we go see a customer,” said Rocky Guo from Shanghai, China. 

Bottom line, if you’re traveling this summer, pack your patience. 

“I want to know. Sir, you can go to the ticket counter, because I’m not going to deal with this type of attitude right now. I’m being nice and polite,” said an American Airlines employee. 

    

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