American Airlines Flight Delayed By Bees

Yesterday Jeff P. emailed me from the gate area of American Airlines flight AA70 from Dallas to Frankfurt. The flight was delayed in a little over an hour.

He may have been reporting the most surprising reason for the delay of a US-departing flight from a major hub that I’ve ever heard: “approximately 1000 bees have swarmed the cargo door and the crew can’t access it. A beekeeper has been called in.”


American spokesperson Andrea Huguely tells me that they “did have an issue at DFW with a swarm of bees … not once, but twice.”


It turns out that it was two issues with the same aircraft. The Boeing 767 arrived in Dallas from Las Vegas, and I’m told that when “Fleet Service started unloading the aircraft, they noticed a lot of bees under the wing and stopped unloading the plane.” American called a beekeeper to handle the issue, the beekeeper captured the queen bee and swarm and then airline employees finished unloading the aircraft.

However, shortly after the beekeeper left, “another swarm decided to visit the aircraft.” The beekeper was called back, captured the swarm, and then the airline finished loading cargo and bags.

I’m most impressed that they managed two calls to a beekeeper and only delayed the flight by a little over an hour! Or as American’s Huguely put it to me last night, “We were busy as bees at DFW today.”

American Airlines Boeing 767, Which Operates Dallas – Frankfurt

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Agree, impressed they even have an “on call bee keeper”. I’ve waited that long for maintenance to arrive, even at a hub.

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