Fears receded Monday that the fallout from Iceland's volcanic eruption would disrupt flights within North America.
Overnight flights off Newfoundland had been cancelled in the face of a Navigation Canada warning Sunday that ash from the Eyjafjallajokull volcano could reach St. John's airspace.
But Monday morning a spokeswoman for the St. John's Airport Authority said that the airspace was open. Some flights were being cancelled because of poor visibility, a more routine problem, at the discretion of the individual carriers.
"It's up to the airlines, it's always up to the airlines," said Marie Manning.
A West Jet flight was able to leave early in the day and the airline is continuing to monitor the situation. "No cancellations for us due to [volcanic activity]" spokesman Robert Palmer wrote in an e-mail.
An Air Canada representative said in an email that they had resumed operations to and from St John's, Gander and Deer Lake, "subject to some delays due to inclement weather, unrelated to ash cloud." Porter Airlines had by then downgraded an earlier suspension of flights, saying that delays and cancellations "may occur."
The one-two punch of volcanic ash fears and visibility problems had stopped most air travel to and from Newfoundland.
The looming problem cast a pall Sunday over Juno-related parties. Michael Bublé, who won album and single of the year, reportedly cut short his celebration because of concerns about the possible effect of the ash cloud.
"I spoke to my pilot ... just now, who told me that the ash cloud would be coming to St. John's by 3 a.m. and that it could be three days before anybody leaves here," The Canadian Press reported him saying.
The status of other celebrities who had travelled to St. John's - including rappers K'Naan and Drake, and veteran rockers Blue Rodeo - could not immediately be confirmed.
Teen heartthrob Justin Bieber managed to make it out Sunday night, as documented by Conservative cabinet minister Tony Clement.
The worries in Newfoundland came as the extraordinary shutdown of European air travel entered another day. Wide-ranging restrictions remain in place despite weekend pressure from money-hemorrhaging carriers who say there has been no damage to test-flights they have conducted. The wire service Agence France-Presse reported that airports in London, Paris and Frankfurt "remained giant ghost towns, ordered to stay closed until at least Tuesday."
The shutdowns stem from a volcanic eruption last week that sparked fears of aerial debris that could damage planes and cause engines to seize up. Trans-Atlantic and continental flights have been largely suspended for days. The crisis has sparked a worldwide spillover effect, foiling the travel plans of millions of people, and has been costing airlines an estimated $200-million daily at a time when they can ill afford it.
Reuters reported Monday that Eurocontrol expected between 8,000 and 9,000 flights to operate in Europe. That's less than one-third of normal flight traffic and means the massive backlog continues to build.
Chandra Ewing, a Canadian unable to fly home from Frankfurt, said Sunday that she counts herself lucky because she was able to take a train south to Diessen to go stay with a friend.
"Everyone seems pretty hopeless," Ms. Ewing said of people at the airport. "People are out of money, people are stranded."
Representatives of continental airlines and airports called Sunday for an "immediate reassessment" of restrictions on flights.
"While Europe's airlines and airports consider safety to be an absolute priority, they are questioning the proportionality of the flight restrictions currently imposed," according to a statement issued by Airports Council International Europe and the Association of European Airlines.
"The eruption of the Icelandic volcano is not an unprecedented event and the procedures applied in other parts of the world for volcanic eruptions do not appear to require the kind of restrictions that are presently being imposed in Europe."