How are airports in the north of the country doing during the shortage of pilots?


CITY OF HOUNSFIELD, New York (WWNY) — Canceled flights, pilot shortages and inflation have hampered plans for air travelers. We spoke to two local airport managers to see if they feel the turbulence of travel.

“There are challenges in the industry with pilots and staffing and operational issues as everything gears up to meet the demand that’s happening in the industry,” said Grant Sussey, airport manager. of Watertown.

“It is very disappointing for anyone who has to go on vacation or travel for business to have delays or cancellations. This makes it difficult for the traveling public everywhere,” said Stephanie Saracco, director of the international airport. of Ogdensburg.

The pilot shortage has hit close to home for airports in the north of the country. American Airlines has announced the discontinuation of service to 3 smaller airports, including Ithaca.

But at airports in the north of the country, so far so good.

“Watertown is unaffected at this time, but we encourage our community to travel using the community airport to ensure the continued success of our air service here,” Sussey said.

What could help local airports is inflation. Travelers can fly from a local airport to get free parking and not spend money on gas.

“What is the most economical way to do this? Is it more economical to drive to a local airport than to drive a few hours to a larger airport,” Saracco said.

Local officials are monitoring flight cases but remain confident there will be little turbulence at Watertown and Ogdensburg airports.

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