Travelers at OIA frustrated after Spirit Airlines cancels several flights

ORLANDO, Fla. — Hundreds of travelers showed up at Orlando International Airport early Monday expecting to fly out on a Spirit plane, only to be stuck during hundreds of cancelations nationwide.

Channel 9 was there as the lines started to build, wrapping all the way around to other airline ticket counters.

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Spirit passengers were told by ticket agents they weren’t going anywhere, at least not yet.

“We haven’t gotten no satisfaction, no water, no food,” a traveler said. “I spent my hard-earned money to come on vacation to be treated this way?”

Spirit isn’t the first to frustrate customers during what industry leaders say is a travel surge amid the pandemic.

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In June, American Airlines canceled hundreds of flights stretching out weeks due to labor shortages and rising demand.

And though Southwest Airlines blamed the weather for a series of similar cancelations back in July, documents obtained by ABC News blamed staffing issues, noting more than 20% of the airline’s flight attendants called in sick the month before.

A Spirit spokesperson told Channel 9 that the company is “working around the clock to get back on track in the wake of some travel disruptions due to a series of weather and operational challenges.”

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The company told some guests it was working to find solutions.

“I’m calling the Spirit number to get my money back and they just send me to another number,” a traveler told Channel 9. “They hang up and haven’t helped me.”

Spirit is urging people to check their emails and flight status before going to the airport.

To check if your flight has been canceled, click here.

Karla Ray

Karla Ray, WFTV.com

Karla Ray anchors Eyewitness News This Morning on Saturday and Sundays, and is an investigative reporter for the 9 Investigates unit.

Katlyn Brieskorn, WFTV.com

Katlyn Brieskorn is a Digital Assignment Editor at WFTV. She joined Channel 9 in July 2019.

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