More than a third of Canadians who had intended to take a trip by plane this year have altered their plans amid a series of delays and other issues plaguing major airports, a new poll has found.
The Leger survey of 1,516 Canadians was commissioned by RATESDOTCA and BNN Bloomberg. It found that 35 per cent of those who had been planning a trip by plane this year have had their plans altered amid airport chaos.
Of those people, more than half (56 per cent) said that they decided to delay their travel plans while another 18 per cent said they changed their destination and 13 per cent said that an airline either changed their itinerary or cancelled their flights outright. The remaining 13 per cent indicated that they decided to drive rather than fly.
The results are perhaps not surprising, given the challenges that many air travelers have faced so far this summer.
Last week data compiled for CNN Travel by flight tracking site FlightAware revealed that Pearson International Airport had 52.5 per cent of its flights delayed between May 26 and July 19, ranking it dead last in the world when it comes to punctuality.
The airport has also struggled with baggage claim backlogs, with hundreds of bags often seen piled up in its arrivals area.
Earlier this month, Greater Toronto Airports Authority President and CEO Deborah Flint told CP24 that the issues at Pearson are improving as staffing is ramped up but could take a while to resolve fully.
“We’re seeing challenges with a restart this summer here at Toronto Pearson and many airports across Europe and in the United States as well. We’re seeing both labour being restored across the system at airlines and government agencies and we’re seeing processes improve,” she said.
The Leger survey found that about 28 per cent of respondents are planning to take a trip by plane this year. Younger Canadians between the ages of 18 to 34 were most likely to be planning a trip by plane (35 per cent)
No margin of error can be associated with a non-probability sample (i.e. a web panel in this case). For comparative purposes, though, a probability sample of 1516 respondents would have a margin of error of ±2.5%, 19 times out of 20.