Global airports hit by computer problems

29 September, 2017, 00:43 | Author: Lorena Waters
  • Bojan Bokic

Air passengers across the globe are suffering delays and disruptions after commonly used check-in software crashed worldwide.

Airports as far flung as London's Gatwick, Paris Charles de Gaulle, Melbourne and Baltimore Washington have all reported issues.

Passengers are enduring long waits at check-in desks after the outage on Thursday morning.

London's Gatwick Airport blamed Altea, a passenger management system that underpins booking systems and is made by Spanish software company Amadeus, for the problems.

The spokesman said that the check-in system was only down for five minutes between 5.37pm and 5.42pm.

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In response to the BBC, Amadeus explained that a "network issue" caused the disruption. Altea helps airlines manage customer reservations, including tagging luggage and issuing boarding passes.

One passenger tweeted saying: "If your entire system is down at REAGAN airport in DC, does that mean the planes aren't leaving on time?"

Gatwick said the situation as a "momentary IT glitch" and said it was not causing flight delays, and the system was back up and running.

It later said its technical teams solved the problem and its systems were functioning normally again.

Several airlines at Terminals 2, 3 and 4 are affected. "We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause". Amadeus didn't elaborate on what the problem was, but the fact that one software provider could take down the check-in systems of hundreds of airlines shows how vulnerable the global air travel system is to IT problems. "The action is ongoing with services gradually being restored".

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