Chaos unfolds in Sydney Airport ahead of Queen’s birthday long weekend

Jun 10, 2022
Travellers in states celebrating the Queen's Birthday long weekend are battling long queues as Melbourne and Sydney airports. Source: Getty

Holidaymakers getting ready to take advantage of the long weekend are being warned of travel chaos as extreme queues and delays at the airport have already begun.

Thousands of passengers have been waiting for hours to check-in at the Sydney Kingsford Smith airport as early as 6 am on Friday, June 10.

An estimated 80,000 travellers are expected to come through the airport as the long weekend kicks off with traffic already banking up, the queues snaking around the entire building causing travellers to miss their flights despite arriving hours ahead of time.

Travellers have been advised to arrive at least two hours ahead of their departure time as airport staff brace themself for their busiest day since the pre-pandemic era.

Airport authorities trying to cope with the crowds are hoping this weekend does not become a repeat of Easter weekend, which saw mass delays, cancelled flights, and missing luggage on top of a nationwide staff shortage.

Greens senator David Shoebridge was among the crowd waiting to catch his flight.

Clearly unimpressed with the morning’s havoc, the senator took to Twitter to express his disapproval.

“Another holiday and another meltdown at Sydney’s privatised airport,” he wrote, accompanying the tweet with a photo of the chaos unfolding inside.

One traveller described the scene as a “shit show” after waiting 40 minutes just to get through airport security to then have Qantas cancel her flight.

The mass overflow of people has begun to make travellers anxious as some of them have plans to travel overseas, while others have taken to social media to call Sydney airport “the most unfriendliest place in Australia”.

While Sydney Airport has scheduled a mammoth job fair next Thursday, June 16, looking to hire at least 5,000 people to aid with the influx of passengers, the public is not impressed with their efforts, with some suggesting that the airlines brought this upon themselves.

Similar chaotic scenes have begun in Melbourne airport as they’re expecting to see more than 97,000 travellers pass through their terminals on Friday alone, with Melbourne Airport spokesperson Andrew Lund also advising travellers should plan to arrive early.

“We’re advising people to arrive between one and two hours ahead of a domestic flight and two to three hours ahead of international flights,” Lund said.

How are you celebrating the long weekend?

Please sign in to post a comment.
Retrieving conversation…
Stories that matter
Emails delivered daily
Sign up