What Effect Will Government Budget Cuts Have on Your Upcoming Air Travel?

  • February 28, 2013

  • jon@brandendo.com

What Effect Will Government Budget Cuts Have on Your Upcoming Air Travel?

The Transportation Department stands to lose nearly $1 billion as a result of budget cuts, through fiscal year end, if Congress doesn’t act by Friday, March 1 to avert those cuts. These cuts will have a major impact on the FAA and the 15,000 air traffic controllers it employs. And that will have an impact on YOU!

The impact on air traffic will not be felt until April, as the FAA is required by law to give advance notice to employees of furloughs. But come April, air traffic controllers will face furloughs of one to two days every two week pay period.

But come April the impact will surely be felt!  Private and business jet traffic will sustain the greatest impact, but commercial airline traffic will surely be affected! Although the FAA will prioritize maintaining staffing at 77 “core facilities,” handling the greatest volume of air traffic, staffing will be reduced system wide and likely shut down close to 6% of the less busy air traffic control towers nationwide. At the nation’s largest airports, reduced staffing may result in runway closures and delays of up to 90 minutes during peak travel times. The reduced staffing will also likely force a reduction in maintenance and repairs at smaller airports.

Not a pretty picture with peak vacation travel just months away. Needless to say, be prepared for delays!