Chicago-area family finally arrives in Albany for late Christmas celebration
For the Vest Family of Naperville, Illinois, Thursday was the day they got to celebrate Christmas.
The grandparents live in the Schenectady area.
The original plan was for everyone to get together on Sunday – Christmas Day. Mom, dad, and three kids made it to Midway Airport in Chicago that day, and were ready and excited to climb onboard a Southwest flight. That didn’t work out.
The first flight they could book was on United Airlines – four days after Christmas. However, they’re still having trouble tracking down luggage – with Christmas gifts hanging in the balance.
They’re not the only ones. Passengers across the country have been stranded, luggage has been lost, and frustration has been building and boiling over.
Most problems seem to be incurred by passengers on Southwest Airlines. The airline has cancelled nearly 5,000 flights nationwide over the past two days. That is causing widespread chaos at airports from Albany to Albuquerque.
One person who was able to catch a flight was Patricia Jenkins, who was flying from Maryland to Albany. However, things didn’t go quite as planned.
“Once we got on the plane, everybody was upset because it wasn’t leaving. We were on the tarmac over an hour, and they couldn’t locate the bags, and then they located half,” said Patricia Jenkins of Maryland. “It took them a long time to get the bags on the plane, and we waited for the other bags, and then finally, they said, ‘We’re going regardless of where the bags are, we’re going.’ So 50 people didn’t have their bags, but luckily I did.