When planning business travel, waiting until the last minute could leave you with few options. The CEO of American Airlines has said it could be two to three years before flight capacity returns to normal amid an ongoing staffing and pilot shortage. CEO Robert Isom told investors that demand for flights has surged while the supply of staff and pilots is struggling to keep up.
Isom said it would take approximately one year to get the airline’s main flight routes back to full capacity and two to three years for the regional routes.
It comes after the airline canceled an additional 1,200 summer flights to minimize flight schedule disruptions. Summer travel on the airline (and most others) has been wrought with cancellations, delays, and lost luggage.
The airline recently offered pilots pay raises of up to $64,000 in an attempt to combat the shortage. Meanwhile, Allied Pilots union members are planning to picket in Chicago on July 26 to “send management a clear message” as they work to improve conditions for pilots.