TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Saturday’s storms brought a flood of frustration at Tampa International Airport.
Thousands of people had their travel plans destroyed by the weather system that caused a full ground stop that lasted for hours.
According to Flightaware, Tampa International had 99 departures canceled, and 109 delayed by late Saturday night, making it the third worst airport in the world Saturday for cancellations.
Tara McBride and her family flew from Salt Lake City, Utah to Tampa Saturday. They were then supposed to fly into Puerto Rico, and hop on a cruise, which leaves Sunday.
Their first Southwest Airlines flight was delayed. When they landed in Tampa, they found out their flight to the island was canceled.
“It’s not looking like we’re going to make it.,” McBride said. “It is just really frustrating, I was looking forward to this trip, it’s really hard.”
By late Saturday night, Southwest canceled almost 500 flights, and nearly 1,500 were delayed.
Southwest Airlines said in a statement:
Some of our earliest departing flights this morning were delayed, and a handful of them canceled, after we intermittent technology issues during routine overnight maintenance. Some of those aircraft continue to be operating behind schedule, at the same time thunderstorms and airspace congestion in the Southeast U.S. is causing additional delays this evening.
We offer heartfelt apologies to our Customers for any inconvenience, and gratitude to our Employees who are working diligently to take care of them. We’ll continue to update Customers whose journey with us today might be delayed.
It wasn’t just Southwest experiencing issues. Katina Spates says her Spirit flight was canceled. She was forced to get a new flight with Frontier Airlines, which was then delayed.
Many travelers sum up the day with one word.
“Trying to be patient, everything happens for a reason,” Spates said.