Air traffic congestion in the Philippines is being blamed for causing a cascading set of delays that affected United Airlines’ Flight UA 192, resulting in some passengers taking nearly two days to make the trip to Saipan.
United was again in the spotlight after a passenger, who was part of that delayed flight, posted a video on Facebook detailing their experience, while two crewmembers in Guam explained.
United, in an email to Saipan Tribune, apologized to their customers who had to go through the experience of several flight delays that took their overnight flight almost two days to reach its destination.
The delays affected around 50 passengers.
“We deeply apologize to our customers for the inconvenience caused by the delay of United flight UA 192 from Manila to Palau on Friday, July 20, due to air traffic congestion at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila,” said UA in a statement that was released by its corporate communications.
UA 192 was originally bound for Manila-Koror-Guam late Friday night, making a stop in Palau to drop some passengers while also picking up others who are either going to Guam or also on their way to Saipan.
UA 192 from Manila was scheduled to leave at 9:45pm Friday via Koror, with Guam as the final destination where they would then take another flight to Saipan (UA 174) at the A.B. Won Pat International Airport.
First, the 9:45pm flight (UA 192) last Friday to Koror from Manila got delayed and the passengers boarded at 10pm and the plane left at midnight. The plane arrived in Koror at 4am.
“Because of this delay, our crew could not complete the flight to Guam within their legally permitted duty hours. We needed to delay the Palau-Guam segment and the flight arrived [in] Guam at 9:21pm on July 21 (Saturday),” said United.
They added that their crew in Guam assisted the passengers and managed to accommodate them in an extra flight so they could get home to their families on Saipan.
“The United team at the Antonio B. Won Pat International Airport Guam provided assistance and hotel and meal accommodations to connecting passengers,” said the statement.
“United created a special flight from Guam to Saipan, which departed Guam at 5:20pm on July 22, to accommodate affected passengers who were connecting to Saipan,” they added.