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Up to 880 flights were canceled on Christmas Day as Omicron case numbers continued to surge throughout the U.S.

On Friday, both Delta and United Airlines canceled several scheduled flights at San Diego International Airport, as federal health officials continue to provide a concerning number of cases regarding the rise of the Omicron variant. 

"The nationwide spike in omicron cases this week has had a direct impact on our flight crews and the people who run our operation," said a spokesperson for United Airlines, Maddie King. "As a result, we have unfortunately had to cancel some flights and are notifying impacted customers in advance of them coming to the airport. We are sorry for the disruption and are working hard to re-book as many people as possible and get them on their way for the holidays," she added. 

United Airlines says that the 880 canceled flights from Friday represent only a small fraction of the flights operated daily through their airline, with up to 4,000 flights operating on average every day. 

Delta Airlines released a statement on the matter, saying that the Omicron virus and the weather conditions played into Friday's decision. 

"As winter weather impacts the Northwest and Northeast U.S, the Omicron variant continues to surge, and Delta teams exhausted all options and resources before canceling around 158 flights in today's nearly 3,100-flight schedule," Delta said. "We apologize to our customers for the delay in their holiday travel plans. Delta people are working around the clock to reroute and substitute aircraft and crews to get customers where they need to be as quickly and as possible. When that is not possible, Delta reservations specialists coordinate with our operations and customer center to get those impacted on the next available flight." Delta added. 

Both airlines are encouraging customers to be checking their flight status leading up to their departure through the Delta or United Airlines home website. 

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