Air travel continues to be severely disrupted in the United States, with bad weather in parts of the country adding to the impact of a surge in COVID-19 cases fueled by the Omicron variant.
The US had 2,604 canceled flights on Saturday (Jan. 1), more than half of the 4,529 canceled worldwide, shortly after 4:30pm (21:30 GMT).
Among international carriers, China Eastern scrubbed more than 500 flights, or about one-fourth of its total, and Air China canceled more than 200 flights, one-fifth of its schedule.
The US cancellations represent the highest single-day toll since just before Christmas when airlines began announcing staffing shortages as a result of increasing COVID-19 cases among crews.
The worst-affected US airline was Southwest, which had to cancel 450 flights nationwide or 13% of its flight schedule. American Airlines and Delta Air Lines scrubbed more than 200 flights each, and United Airlines canceled more than 150.