Sydney Airport becoming a laughing stock

Sydney's domestic airport is fast becoming an international laughing stock - and a regular source of frustration for flyers.

All is takes is a thunder storm, some fog, or heavy rain, and the domestic terminal comes to a grinding halt - particularly the Virgin Australia section.

Flights in and out of Sydney were today delayed due to a low-lying fog hovering over the city. Many domestic services were affected, with passengers lined up around Sydney Airport - and outside the terminal.

A spokeswoman for Virgin Australia told the Sydney Morning Herald that the fog combined with peak travel period caused "a fair bit" of congestion during the morning.

Many travellers took to social media to vent their frustrations with the longer wait times, posting photos of the chaotic nature of the airport.

The fact is, however, that this sort of chaos happens in Sydney on a regular basis - and the airlines are not equipped to handle it.

When I flew back into Sydney just 10 days ago there was similar chaos. It took me two hours in the "priority" queue to check-in for my flight to Hobart. And the lack of announcements was hugely frustrating. 


Virgin Australia queues criss-crossed through each other on December 21
A total of 62 arrivals and 65 departures from Sydney were cancelled as a result of severe thunderstorms that swept the city - on one of the busiest travel days of the year.

Bizarrely, international flights were less affected, with no cancellations.

A week earlier, on December 14, the SMH reported: "The flow-on effect from Thursday’s hail storms pushed Sydney Airport into further chaos on Friday morning. "

So three major issues in three weeks. My question is, why does Sydney Airport descend into such chaos with weather events when other airports around the world manage to cope?

One quarter of the 21,600 flights that were cancelled across Australia in 2017 came from Sydney alone, News.com.au reports.

Are the like of St John's, Newfoundland, or Helsinki (both with far worse weather patterns) better prepared, better equipped, or better staffed?

Certainly, on December 21, Virgin had nowhere near the number of staff needed, and explanations to passengers were scant. And it sounds as if today is no better. 





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