On Monday evening, there was a proverbial "super meltdown" at London Gatwick Airport, which is symbolic of the current shortage of staff. Vueling flight VY6209 had to leave the airport without passengers in the direction of Florence.
The chaos had already begun at the check-in counter, because according to eyewitnesses, only three employees were said to have been available to process Vueling flights throughout the day. The result: Enormously long waiting times. Those affected report that they want to have stood in line for around four hours and then it means that you cannot fly with them. No staff is said to have been available to carry out the boarding.
Not a single passenger was allowed to board the Vueling flight from Gatwick to Florence, despite valid flight tickets. After about two hours of waiting, the captain decided to fly empty to Florence. A particularly large number of passengers had not yet reached the gate anyway, because those who did not need the check-in counter thanks to web check-in and suitcase-free travel were already waiting for the next “surprise”: understaffed security checkpoints, which also took an extremely long time fabricated queue.
You could twist and turn it however you wanted: The Airbus A319 from Vueling flew to Florence without passengers and understandably the anger of the travelers stranded in Gatwick was great, because if you managed to pass the test of patience at the check-in counter and security check, you were allowed to Leave the security area again, because no passengers were flown to Florence. There was simply no boarding staff at the gate.
The Vueling incident is an extreme example of the situation at many European commercial airports, particularly in the United Kingdom and the Netherlands. Airlines, airports and ground handling service providers lack staff in many places. This is also a boomerang for the behavior of many employers, because too many employees were laid off or they could no longer afford to live with short-time work benefits (around 60 percent of wages) in Germany, for example, and have reoriented themselves in other sectors .