Pilot Strikes Put Travel Plans At Risk Ahead of Busy Summer Travel Season

Pilot Strikes Put Travel Plans At Risk Ahead of Busy Summer Travel Season

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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla., May 17, 2023 — Several major U.S-based airlines, including United, Southwest, and American, are facing potential pilot strikes ahead of a busy summer travel season.

New data from Squaremouth.com, the leading U.S. travel insurance marketplace, finds that the number of travelers this summer is expected to rise 10% from last year.

As significant travel disruptions become a more realistic possibility this summer, Squaremouth reviews previous summer travel insurance claims data and provides tips on how travelers can protect themselves if a strike disrupts their trip.

More Disruptions May Be On the Horizon This Summer

Last summer, an influx of travel demand coupled with historic staffing shortages highlighted the fragility of the travel industry.

With travelers facing many of the same issues this summer, Squaremouth analyzed claims from last year to determine the most common travel complications travelers can expect.

Notable Stat: 50% of claims stemmed from travel disruptions that took place after a traveler has left home, such as delays, missed connections, and trip interruptions

Paid Claims From 2022 Summer Travel

Type of Travel Complication% of Claims
Disruptions While Traveling49.68%
Medical Emergencies25.59%
Pre-Departure Cancellations15.78%
Lost, Damaged or Delayed Luggage8.96%

How Travelers Can Prepare For The Pilot Strikes

Historically, pilot strikes have resulted in flight cancellations, delays, and missed connections if not resolved in a timely manner.

Squaremouth provides the following tips to help travelers find the best coverage as the threat of pilot strikes continues into the summer travel season:

  • Purchase Your Policy Early: Typically, in order for a strike to be covered, you must buy your policy before the strike is formally announced.
  • Seek Flexible Delay Protection: Certain policies are more flexible with their delay coverage. Look for a policy with delay benefits that cover “any delay of a common carrier,” and can kick in after a 3-hour delay.
  • Get Cancellation Coverage: Many policies include “labor strikes” as a covered event to cancel. If you’re concerned about a strike canceling your trip outright, a policy with Trip Cancellation for labor strikes can protect your trip costs.
  • Protect Your Baggage: Labor strikes can result in delayed, misplaced, or even lost baggage. Look for a policy with high Baggage Delay and Baggage Loss benefits.
  • Save Any Documents: In the event you’re impacted by labor strikes and need to file a claim, you will need to provide evidence that your trip was interrupted. This includes receipts, as well as notice from your airline.

Squaremouth’s Airline Pilot Strike Travel Insurance Information Center provides up-to-date information about the potential pilot strikes, including current event updates, more advice for travelers, and answers to the most commonly asked questions.

Notes to editors

Available Topic Expert: Steven Benna, inhouse data specialist is available for comment and interview. sbenna@squaremouth.com (727) 619-7262

About Squaremouth: Squaremouth.com has insured over 3 million travelers. Using Squaremouth’s intuitive quoting and comparison engine, award-winning support team, and verified customer reviews, travelers can save time and money to find the best travel insurance policy for their trip.