Travelers stranded in Boston since last week showed up at Logan International Airport in droves Monday morning to try and rebook their flights, only to be told in some cases that they couldn’t get out for another week.
The recent snow storm wreaked havoc on airline schedules across the country, just as new federal regulations limiting pilot hours kicked in and put further restraints on carriers’ attempts to reconfigure their crews.
JetBlue Airways, Boston’s biggest carrier, was particularly affected by the one-two punch. The New York-based carrier is reducing its schedule at four airports in New York, Boston, and Newark Monday, canceling all flights there as of 5 p.m. today and resuming a normal schedule by 3 p.m. Tuesday in an attempt to bring its pilots into compliance with new rules aimed at combating pilot fatigue.
The rules, which went into effect over the weekend, limit the consecutive hours pilots can fly and increase the amount of uninterrupted rest they must have.
Passengers at Logan were resigned to the delays, even those who had multiple flights canceled and were stuck in Boston for a week or more. Stories abounded of 2 hours on hold with an airline, only to be hung up on, and 5 hours in line at the ticket counter, only to be told the next flight out was days away. Two strangers, upon finally reaching the front of the line at the JetBlue counter, exchanged high fives.
Kathy Johnstone, of Seattle, and Robin Rose, of Sarasota, who were both here visiting grandchildren, met in the same line and ended up having lunch together in the Terminal C food court.
Johnstone, who was supposed to fly out Jan. 2, is now booked on a Thursday flight, her fourth attempt to get home.“I think my son in law is beginning to think I’m never leaving,” she said.