American Airlines recalling flight attendants to handle travel crowds

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It is back to work for 3,300 flight attendants at American Airlines.

The carrier is canceling extended leaves and bringing the staffers back to work in time for the holiday season.

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American also plans to hire 800 new flight attendants by next March, according to an airline executive.

It is another sign that travel in the U.S. is recovering from the coronavirus pandemic.

"Increasing customer demand and new routes starting later this year mean we need more flight attendants to operate the airline," Brady Byrnes, the airline's vice president of flight service, told flight attendants in a memo Thursday.

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Byrnes said cabin crews who are coming back from leave will return to flights in November or December.

American offered long-term leaves of absence to flight attendants and other employees last year to cut costs while it struggled with a steep drop in travel.

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AALAMERICAN AIRLINES GROUP, INC.20.46-0.16-0.78%
DALDELTA AIR LINES, INC.41.35+0.67+1.65%

The hiring is also taking place at other airlines.

Delta Air Lines CEO Ed Bastian said this week that his airline expects to hire between 4,000 and 5,000 workers this year.

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When the pandemic hit, the number of people flying in the U.S. plunged below 100,000 on some days, a level not seen in decades. This year, it has climbed from less than 700,000 a day in early February to 2 million a day in July.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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