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'Starving out here': Vancouver travellers outraged over multiple Air Canada flight delays

"Me 4 hours on the plane."
YVR Airport in Vancouver, B.C. is reporting multiple Air Canada flight cancellations on June 1, 2023.

Canada's largest airline has sparked a public outcry after its second alleged technical failure in a week forced multiple flight delays across the country. 

Air Canada advised customers Thursday (June 1) morning that "an IT issue" was causing flight delays across its network and they should check the status of their departure before heading to the airport.

But numerous frustrated travellers had already arrived at the airport well before the airline posted its advisory.

Several locals took to social media after their flights were significantly delayed or cancelled at Vancouver International Airport (YVR). 

While he was sitting on the tarmac at YVR during a flight delay, Shawn Chance wrote in a tweet that he felt the situation "could escalate quickly."

"Full marks to the pilots and flight crew who are doing an admirable job of trying to contain the situation. Come on [Air Canada] - you can do better," he said.

A Vancouver woman said she was also experiencing issues with Air Canada, noting that people at the gate at YVR who were headed to Washington, D.C. were originally told "the aircraft was 'too hot" but later learned that it was an IT failure.

On the other side of the country, numerous people who were headed back to Vancouver from the Lester B. Pearson International Airport (YYZ) reported waiting on the tarmac for several hours. 

A Vancouver woman shared an image of an Air Canada Rouge plane outside of the one that she was on, remarking in another tweet how "It’s terrible, almost [three] hours now on the plane."

Another air passenger wrote in a tweet that they were also stuck on the tarmac in Toronto for hours.

"If this is the same [technical] issues as last Thursday it’s totally unacceptable," they wrote. "Should almost be at my destination and eating. Starving out here."

Iconic Canadian rhythm and blues songstress Jully Black also shared her frustrating experience waiting on an Air Canada aircraft, sharing that she was waiting for four hours on a plane. 

"I hope we all get business class vouchers. The entire plane," she quipped. 

YVR reports multiple Air Canada flight cancellations 

YVR spokesperson Adriana Unger told V.I.A. that  Air Canada continues to experience "technical issues leading to flight delays and disruptions across its entire network, including flights to and from YVR."

Passengers should check the status of their flight on Air Canada’s website before coming to the airport, she said.

YVR's Guest Experience and Green Coat volunteers are available throughout the terminal and will continue to assist and update passengers currently at the airport. The latest information will continue to be available on YVR's website and on Twitter.

According to YVR's arrivals flights page, 33 Air Canada flights have a "delayed" status, and seven of them have been cancelled on Thursday. On its departures page, 12 flights are listed as "delayed" and two are cancelled. 

Air Canada briefly grounded its planes last Thursday due to a problem with the system it uses to communicate with aircraft and monitor their performance.

The issue caused delays for nearly half of Air Canada's flights that day.

The company called last week's ground stop "precautionary" and said the effects were limited.

A new Canadian company says it can help travellers get the money they are owed from airlines for flight delays and cancellations.

With files from the Canadian Press. 

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