Will US shutdown impact air travel?

Very little has changed – at least on the surface

There will not be a big impact on air travel in the United States from the government shutdown, news agency Reuters reports. Passport inspectors, security personnel and air traffic controllers will all continue to work as usual. Visas for the US will continue to be processed and issued.

Federal Aviation Administration inspectors will still be working in the field and medical certification for pilots and air traffic controllers will continue.

The only impact is for air traffic controllers undergoing FAA training, which has been suspended because of the government shutdown. Areas of development and testing, such as research on the new “NextGen” air traffic control system, are also suspended.

However, there could be a longer-term impact, as Roger Dow, president of the US Travel Association, highlights. “We are concerned that federal agencies will quickly be forced to implement shutdown policies that will damage the travel experience and derail long-term bipartisan investments in our travel infrastructure.”


[pictured: Check-in at American Airlines’ terminal at New York JFK]