KIRO NEWSRADIO OPINION

Gee & Ursula: Is the answer to just NOT travel during the holidays?

Dec 27, 2022, 2:41 PM

Sea-Tac cancellations...

Thousands left stranded at Sea-Tac and airports across the country. (Getty Images)

(Getty Images)

Maybe it’s not the snow and ice or badly run airlines. Maybe the answer to stress-free travel is just not to travel during the holidays.

On The Gee & Ursula Show, Gee Scott said, “People being told inside of the airport, ‘Ladies and gentlemen, just want you to know, all of our flights are canceled. You will not get out of here for four days.'”

Gee said that was what really happened at the Phoenix Airport

More Gee & Ursula: Honking car horn illegal in Washington despite rising road rage trends

“Imagine during the holiday time being told, ‘Oh, sorry. You’re not getting to your destination for four days.’ What? There are no accommodations that can make up for that.”

Fill-in host Aaron Mason said he totally agreed with Gee and took it a step further.

“I have a standing rule where I don’t travel on the holidays,” Aaron said. “If we want to get together in earlier December or more commonly sometime in January. That’s when I will make that move. I’m not into competing with all of the people to get somewhere at once.”

But, there may be more than just the combination of blizzards and the holidays to the story. Both hosts talked about how staffing has been a problem coming out of the pandemic.

Aaron said there was yet another issue with flying over the holidays — your luggage.

“I’m looking at Twitter, there’s this video posted where a guy says ‘Just to let you know I could have stolen like 1,500 suitcases yesterday and made a bajillion dollars.’ And there’s video of the airport baggage claim. There are just bags and bags and bags sitting out in the open. Nobody’s watching them. The people whose bags they are probably aren’t in that city or have been told to leave the airport.

“It’s just a complete mess.”

Southwest cancels more flights, draws federal investigation

Gee said thousands of passengers are now stranded. The situation is so bad the Department of Transportation has ordered an investigation.

“They’ll levy a fine against Southwest [Airlines]. They’ll negotiate it down to a lower amount,” Gee said. “As long as Southwest promises never to do this again. People are going absolutely ballistic over an airline that they have trusted for the last 50 years.”

Aaron said he was interested in what the Transportation Department was going to do.

“I remember seeing Secretary Pete Buttigieg a couple of months ago, going on this little press tour on TV. He was talking about we’re going to start holding these airlines accountable. We’ve written these new rules, and here are these things that they have to do,” Aaron explained.

There was a lot of build-up to this holiday season and whatever the reason, it didn’t turn out ok.

“This is clearly just a collapse of whatever toothpick and chewing gum model the airlines use to prop up their industry, so I think there are going to be some pretty serious ramifications for it,” Aaron concluded.

Listen to Gee Scott and Ursula Reutin weekday mornings from 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. on KIRO Newsradio, 97.3 FM. Subscribe to the podcast here.

Gee and Ursula Show

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Gee & Ursula: Is the answer to just NOT travel during the holidays?