Even though fewer people are expected to fly this holiday season, local residents should not expect air travel to be any easier, according to a new report released Monday.
LaGuardia, John F. Kennedy and Newark Airports are ranked the three worst airports in the nation for on-time arrivals through the first nine months of the year.
The problem stretches well beyond the city, since such a large percentage of domestic flights pass through the area. In 2007, nearly three-quarters of all delays in the United States could be traced to slowdowns at the three area airports.
Changes have been made to improve the problem, including limiting the number of flights and opening restricted military airspace off the East Coast.
Flights are down 10 percent at LaGuardia, nine percent at Newark, and five percent at JFK in the last fiscal year. But the reduction has only reduced delays incrementally.
Meanwhile, Senator Charles Schumer is calling on the Department of Transportation to regulate frequent flyer programs.
He says too many frequent flyer miles expire without warning.
"As the holiday travel season approaches, we cannot let airlines and credit card companies continue to fly off with hard-earned frequent flier miles,” Schumer said. “When a consumer accumulates valuable frequent flier miles, they should not have to constantly worry that they are going to expire with little or no notification from the airline."
Schumer estimates there are $165 billion worth of frequent flyer miles in circulation, and that 20 percent or more will go unused, because of confusing airline policy and additional fees.