Trade prepares for summer peak disruption due to extreme weather events

Travel businesses were bracing for disruption as the summer peak got underway with wildfires in Greece, the first major hurricane of the year devastating parts of the Caribbean, and European air traffic subject to increasing delays due to bad weather.

European air traffic management body Eurocontrol warned “network saturation combined with adverse weather” was “proving particularly challenging” this summer as it reported delays to flights due to bad weather increased by more than 50% year on year in June.

Eurocontrol noted air traffic is “up between 10% and 20%” on 2019 and network management director Iacopo Prissinotti said: “Adverse weather reduces the number of aircraft that can be safely handled.”


More: Mexican resorts braced for Beryl as hurricane warnings issued

Flights cancelled as ‘potentially catastrophic’ Hurricane Beryl heads to Caribbean

Operators provide warnings over Kos wildfires and thunderstorm disruption


He pointed out that less airspace is available due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and called on carriers to “maintain realistic flight schedules, including turnaround times” and “prioritise getting the first flight of the day off on time”.

Jet2 and easyJet holidays issued alerts to holidaymakers after wildfires struck the Greek island of Kos earlier this week, advising customers “to follow the guidance of local authorities”.

EasyJet holidays said its teams on Kos would “provide support and guidance” to those evacuated from their hotel. It advised customers due to travel: “The majority of the island is currently unaffected, so holidays are going ahead as planned.”

However, it asked customers to check their emails “as we’ll be in touch if your holiday is impacted by the evolving situation”. Jet2 said flights were due to operate as scheduled.

The mayor of Kos, Theodosis Nikitaras, issued a personal message saying: “The village of Kardamena, one of the most beautiful places on our island, had to be temporarily evacuated. Thanks to the mobilisation of the authorities, citizens and the effective firefighting operations, we kept everyone safe. Life in Kardamena is as normal, and there is no damage to the village or accommodations.”

In the Caribbean, Hurricane Beryl – a “potentially catastrophic” Category 5 storm, the earliest major hurricane in six decades and the first ever to reach Category 4 status in June – is forecast to hit Mexico’s Yacatan Peninsula today.

  • The US National Weather Service has warned the Caribbean could see as many as 13 hurricanes this year, with seven major hurricanes forecast – compared with the average three.

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