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Patience key when traveling by plane due to pandemic regulations

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Travelers are advised to exercise patience as they navigate the increasingly frustrating reality of airport delays and flight cancellations.

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Sarah Hupalo, owner of Elite Travel Windsor, said demand is strong but travel has changed since the pandemic.

“It’s a different world and people have to really, really be patient and realize that things aren’t going to go the way they used to,” Hupalo said. “It’s going to take a while to get back to some sort of normalcy, but ultimately we’re blessed to be able to travel and have these experiences.

“And sometimes it pays to be a little exasperated to make that dream come true.”

I’ve been doing this for a long time and it’s definitely a different world to navigate

A longtime travel consultant says many clients are looking to fulfill their dreams and tick off their “to do” list.

“Things that people thought they would do on the list one day maybe become now,” she said. “But again, my advice to anyone traveling is to be patient.”

Travelers wait in line at Terminal 3 at Toronto’s Pearson Airport, Thursday, May 9, 2022. Photo by Peter J. Thompson /national post

Hupalo said at least a week before departure, travelers should start checking flight status and continue checking through to departure, including Toronto Pearson International Airport.

“And they should, if they come out of Pearson (to) check in at Pearson,” she added. “They should arrive at least three hours before the flight, even if their flight is at 7 a.m. because of the problem with customs and the lack of staff and all the processes that have been put in place.”

Recent reports from the Canadian Press indicate that the federal government is working on new measures to help reduce delays at major airports which, in many cases, are causing a domino effect of canceled flights elsewhere.

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People traveling through Canadian airports have experienced long lines and flight delays as post-pandemic travel intensifies, particularly at Toronto’s Pearson airport. Slower processing times have been blamed on COVID-19 restrictions and labor shortages.

Mark Galvin, general manager of Windsor International Airport, said there had been flight cancellations and delays, but he was not always aware of the reason for a cancellation, adding that it could be due to backups at Pearson, problems with a plane, or stormy weather.

Given Windsor is a smaller airport with spread out flights and few connecting flights, Galvin said travelers don’t have the same issues getting through security and boarding planes – although delays elsewhere sometimes affect Windsor.

“There was definitely an impact. And it’s a spillover effect from the hubs, like Pearson,” he said.

  1. People line up to check in at Toronto Pearson International Airport on May 12, 2022.

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  2. The Windsor Airport control tower is shown June 1, 2022.

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Early Thursday afternoon, Galvin said only one Air Canada departure had been canceled, but all other flights were on time.

“But again, that’s always subject to change. As you go through the day, sometimes those things come back and it can be kind of a cascading effect,” he said.

“I would also always suggest that a traveler check with the airline, check their own individual flight to see how that flight is going.”

Hupalo shares the same advice.

“I’ve been doing this for a long time and it’s definitely a different world to navigate,” she said.

In the event of a delay or cancellation, she advised travelers to contact their travel agent or the airline directly.

“They should constantly check the entry requirements to know where they are going. If they have a delay or anything, they should check the flight status all the time.

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