Frustrated holidaymakers took to social media to fume about “mile-long” queues at the airports. Bosses have blamed the disruption on an industry-wide problem with staffing levels.
One Twitter user with the handle @DerrenN said there were “unbelievable queues” at Birmingham just after 5am.
They tweeted: “@bhx_official this is the worst I’ve ever seen at an airport. Unbelievable queues today. 400m long.
“Scrap that. Queue is about 1 mile long – Literally.”
Meanwhile, another Twitter user @papagiak said there were queues “half a mile” long at Leeds Bradford just after 4am.
They fumed: “Same cost and even more cr*p service at the airport in Leeds.
“Collapsing services. COVID or opportunity to make more profit and lack of co ordination?
“04:00 and the queue is half a mile.”
Gary Walker shared a snap of a long queue at Leeds Bradford, tweeting: “#LeedsBradfordAirport don’t leave it last minute. 30 mins and only just reached Greggs!”
Another passenger at Leeds Bradford posted at 6am: “Just arrived for my 9am flight and queue for security is that long that I’m not sure if I’m gonna make it.”
Dennis Hall, from Yarm, said his check in at Leeds Bradford last Friday was a “disaster” as he waited more than three hours to board his flight to Greece.
Sarah Dreier, from Castleford, said she missed her flight to Fuerteventura despite arriving at the airport three hours before.
She told the BBC: “There was total chaos.
“After having no customer services available it was clear the whole of the airport was a queue.
“There were families crying, there were people feeling faint. I was in disbelief.”
Another passenger took to Twitter to warn of queues at Leeds Bradford on Wednesday.
They said: “For anyone coming to #leedsbradfordairport it really is as bad as people are saying. 3 hours at least this morning for security.”
Another person, Dave Henderson, added: “Huge queues at #leedsbradfordairport for security. Get there early even for fast track.”
One passenger told Leeds Live: “I’ve been to this airport many times before and never seen queues quite like it – it really is as busy as everyone has been saying. Not the most thrilling thing to have to do on the way to a much-anticipated holiday.”
A Birmingham Airport spokesperson said: “Queues were long but managed and moving this morning as we helped many of the more than 14,000 customers booked to fly out of BHX today.
“As always, we ask customers to arrive at the airport at the time your airline advises – and to help us help you keep queues moving by removing any liquids, gels, pastes and electrical items from your bags before our security x-ray scanners.”