Passengers left stranded and frustrated by Southwest issues

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CHARLOTTE (FOX 46 CHARLOTTE) — Thousands of flights operated by Southwest Airlines were either canceled or delayed over the weekend, many at Charlotte-Douglas International Airport.

The airline says complications with weather and Air Traffic Control delays caused issues. Those problems resulted in out of position aircraft and crews. Passengers were left sending lots of hate to the “Luv” airline.

“I do believe Southwest — or as I call it, Southworst, is one of the worst airlines out there,” said one passenger.

Between Saturday and Sunday, the airline delayed or canceled almost a quarter of the entire system. Some passengers were left to fend for themselves or take alternative forms of transportation like rented busses. An angry Charlotte passenger pointed out the low-cost carrier has no reciprocation with other airlines. That means Southwest cannot rebook or reroute passengers on another carrier.

“We started hearing about the cancelations yesterday… and apparently there’s more being canceled today so we’ve been calling every half hour or so.”

Optimistic passengers arrived at the airport early and checked in with agents frequently with hopes of getting an open seat on a plane out of Charlotte.

“You’re going to be getting emails at the last minute telling you either your gate has changed or your flight has changed — you’re no longer nonstop or you’re delayed.” Travel advisor Cindy Rondeau of Providence, Rhode Island was caught up in a cancelation in Charlotte over the weekend, unrelated to the Southwest meltdown, but says passengers of any airline need to be ready for an about face at any moment.

Passengers are reminded to arrive two hours or more before their flight to avoid delays.

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