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'Fog Will Delay Flights, but Airlines Need To Work on Their Communication'

"Despite doing their best, the ground staff were at the receiving end of the airlines' shortcomings."

Published
My Report
4 min read
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Hindi Female

The fog in Delhi has slowed down the traffic on the roads and created chaos at the airport. This is the season when flights are bound to get delayed as a result of zero to poor visibility.

I came across an article which had mentioned that according to Flightradar24, on 14 January, 414 flights were delayed in arrivals and 508 were delayed in departures.

I am not surprised to read this number, as my flight was one of the 508 flights that were delayed on Sunday.

My flight from Terminal 2 of the Indira Gandhi International (IGI) Airport in New Delhi was scheduled to take off at 11:20 am to a city in Assam.

I was all set to leave my home when I received a message from IndiGo Airlines, informing me that my flight was delayed by an hour – giving me more time to relax at home.

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I reached the airport at 10:15 am and received another message from IndiGo that the delay has been increased further. I had no option but to enter the T2 terminal of the airport.

"Despite doing their best, the ground staff were at the receiving end of the airlines' shortcomings."

I was among a sea of passengers waiting for information about our flights.

(Photo: Accessed by The Quint)

As I walked into the terminal, most of the passengers were glued to the TV screens in front of them, and were checking and rechecking their flight timings.  

Some were looking for a place to sit. All the seats were taken, and there was no space to even place your foot.

There was panic and confusion among many as the departure time of their flights kept getting rescheduled, and the gate change announcements made matters worse.

Compared to Terminal 3 of the IGI Airport, Terminal 2 has a limited infrastructure.

Terminal 2's land-side, the area between entry and security checkpoint, is less than its air-side, the area between the security checkpoint and boarding.

This created congestion at Terminal 2 of IGI Airport.

"Despite doing their best, the ground staff were at the receiving end of the airlines' shortcomings."

Passengers at Terminal 2 of IGI Airport in New Delhi on Sunday.  

(Photo: Accessed by The Quint)

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Mismatch of Information on Display Screens & Apps

The airlines could have done a better job as far as communications were concerned.

There was a mismatch of information between what was shown on the display screens and the app of the concerned airline, because of which airline officials, working as human announcers, were overwhelmed.

When you have been waiting for a few hours already and still don't know when your flight will take off, it is irritating to see the delayed sign next to your flight, not knowing how long it will be like this.

Skilled, professional humans are needed to deal with such situations.

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Ground Staff Did Their Best, but...

The ground staff members were doing their best but were at the receiving end of the airlines' shortcomings.

If some ground staff were rude, it was only because passengers were unwilling to listen to them.

I, too, interacted with an airline staff member who patiently explained the situation to me. I believe that if you give respect, you get respect. Hence, passengers needed to be more patient and considerate.

"Despite doing their best, the ground staff were at the receiving end of the airlines' shortcomings."

Passengers found a place to sit wherever they could find space at T2 of IGI Airport.

(Photo: Accessed by The Quint)

Unfortunately, the ground staff was as clueless as I was when it came to the true picture of the flight timings. As they were unable to provide an answer, it just added to the passengers’ woes, who had been waiting in the lounge for hours, not knowing when their flight would depart.
"Despite doing their best, the ground staff were at the receiving end of the airlines' shortcomings."

Coffee came to my rescue while I waited for my flight at the airport.

(Photo: Accessed by The Quint)

The airlines had organised meals for the passengers but only from one particular outlet.

Eventually, that specific outlet got overcrowded with all the passengers queueing up to collect their meals, adding to their (passengers) frustration.

I, for one, did not feel like entering that melee for grub.

It would have been better if they had handed a meal coupon of a specific amount and let the passengers choose the food outlet from where they wanted to eat.

In total, there was a delay of four hours and 25 minutes in the departure of my flight. The cabin crew did their job with alacrity and a high level of professionalism.

I did convey my appreciation, but the communication from the airlines should be more efficient so that, in case of unforeseeable circumstances, passengers can wait at their homes rather than face the chaos at airports.

(All 'My Report' branded stories are submitted by citizen journalists to The Quint. Though The Quint inquires into the claims/allegations from all parties before publishing, the report and the views expressed above are the citizen journalist's own. The Quint neither endorses, nor is responsible for the same.)

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Topics:  Flight Cancelled   Flight   Flight Delayed 

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