Fri. Jan 21st, 2022

FlightAware says more than 2,600 U.S. flights and nearly 4,600 worldwide were canceled on Saturday.

Air travel was still severely disrupted in the United States on Saturday, with bad weather in parts of the country contributing to the impact of a massive rise in COVID-19 infections fueled by the Omicron variant.

The U.S. had 2,604 canceled flights, more than half of the 4,529 canceled worldwide, shortly after 4:30 p.m. (2130 GMT), according to tracking website FlightAware.

In addition, 3,447 domestic flights were delayed on Saturday, out of a total of 7,602 worldwide for the day.

The U.S. airline worst affected was Southwest, which according to the website had to cancel 13 percent of its flight schedule.

In the US, airports in Chicago were particularly hard hit due to severe weather, with a snowstorm expected in the area on Saturday afternoon and into the night.

The global air travel industry is still reeling from the highly contagious Omicron variant.

Many pilots, air hostesses and other staff are absent from work after contracting COVID-19, or because they are in quarantine after coming into contact with someone who has the infection.

Around 7,500 flights were canceled by airlines worldwide over the Christmas weekend.

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