American Airlines says it will pay more to fully staff flights over holidays

U.S. & World

(AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee, File)

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — American Airlines is giving flight attendants a bonus in an effort to prevent another operational meltdown during the holiday season.

According to an internal memo that was shared with KLAS in Las Vegas, American flight attendants who work between Nov. 23 to Nov. 29 and Dec. 22 to Jan 2. will get a 150% premium.

Employees who have no absences between Nov. 15 and Jan. 2 will receive a 300% premium for the holiday hours they work.

“To ensure we’re providing certainty for both our customers and team members, we’re doubling down on our efforts related to our schedule and staffing,” COO David Seymour said in a staff note on Friday. “On the schedule front, we’ve ensured that November and December are built to meet customer demand and that they are fully supportable by our staffing.”

The one-time premium for peak holiday travel periods is being offered to help American Airlines meet the expected consumer demand.

“We are welcoming back many team members and aggressively onboarding many new hires as well,” Seymour said. “Nearly 1,800 flight attendants have returned from leaves in November and that’ll continue in
December with 800 more.”

American added that it anticipates 4,000 new team members will be joining the company in the fourth quarter and that it will have more than 600 new flight attendants join the team by the end of December.

This comes as the airline is still trying to replace flight attendants furloughed during the pandemic.

Last week, American Airlines canceled hundreds of flights amid disruptions caused by staffing shortages at the big carrier.

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