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What To Do If Superstorm Nemo Derails Your Travel Plans

by on February 7, 2013 · 7 comments

in American, Delta, JetBlue, Southwest, United, US Airways, Virgin America

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With a massive Noreaster bearing down on the East Coast, I wanted to put together a few tips and a handy consolidated resource of the current travel advisories and flight change and refund policies of the major airlines so that you don’t get stranded this weekend.

Winter Storm Nemo is forecast to dump as much as 2 feet of snow on the east coast. Photo credit: weather.com

Winter Storm Nemo is forecast to dump as much as 2 feet of snow on the east coast. Photo credit: weather.com

If you do think your travel plans are in jeopardy, first check out this post on Tips for Weather-Related Flight Cancellations where I cover issues like dealing with gate and ticket agents, long airline hold times, and leveraging travel agents and sites like ExpertFlyer to get your travel plans back on track.

The good news is that airlines are allowing customers to reschedule their travel plans and waiving customary change and cancellation fees.

If you have travel coming up anywhere in the affected zone and my plans are flexible, I would try to change them as soon as possible, because the longer you wait, the less chance you’ll have of rebooking anytime soon as the airlines scramble to adjust flight schedules for after the storm and their call centers become overwhelmed, so better to be proactive.

The major airlines have already posted links to their advisories and change policies specific to Nemo on their homepages, but here is a consolidated list by airline of affected dates, airports and what fees you can expect to be waived as well as contact information for making changes.

American Winter Storm

AMERICAN AIRLINES

American’s travel advisory is posted here. The airline is offering customers the ability to change their flight plans if traveling from affected East Coast airports and the ticket reissue charge will be waived for one ticket change.

Dates:

Travel on the following dates: February 8 – 9, 2013
And your ticket was issued no later than: February 6, 2013
You may travel: February 7 – 12, 2013
Original inventory required? Yes

Affected Airports:

  • Boston, MA (BOS)
  • Buffalo, NY (BUF)
  • Hartford, CT (BDL)
  • Kitchener Waterloo, ON (YKF)
  • Montreal, QC (YUL)
  • New York Kennedy, NY (JFK)
  • New York LaGuardia, NY (LGA)
  • Newark, NJ (EWR)
  • Ottawa / Hull, ON (YOW)
  • Quebec City, QC (YQB)
  • Rochester, NY (ROC)
  • Syracuse, NY (SYR)
  • Watertown, NY (ART)
  • Westchester County / White Plains, NY (HPN)

To change travel dates, contact the Reservations personnel at 1-800-433-7300 within the United States or Canada. If you are calling from outside the United States or Canada, please check the Worldwide Reservations Numbers page.

Delta Winter Storm

DELTA

You can find Delta’s most current Travel Advisory information here. As of now, if your flight is canceled or significantly delayed, you are entitled to a refund. Even if your flight is not canceled, you may make a one-time change to your ticket without fee if you are scheduled to travel to, from, or through the following cities on Delta, Delta Connection, or Delta-coded flights during the specified time periods listed below.

You can now edit your itinerary here at delta.com, or you may contact Reservation Sales to make changes to your itinerary. Additional collection in fares may apply. Check flight status frequently for up-to-the-minute info about your flight plans, or get updates sent directly to your wireless device or email with Delta Messenger.

Dates:

Impacted dates of travel: February 8-9, 2013
Ticket must be reissued on or before: February 12, 2013
Rebooked travel must begin no later than: February 12, 2013
When rescheduled travel occurs beyond Feb 12, 2013, the change fee will be waived. However, a difference in fare may apply. Final travel must be completed by end of ticket validity, one year from date of original issue.

Affected Airports:

Albany, NY (ALB)
Allentown, PA (ABE)
Bangor, ME (BGR)
Birmingham, NY (BGM)
Boston, MA (BOS)
Buffalo, NY (BUF)
Burlington, VT (BTV)
Elmira, NY (ELM)
Hartford, CT (BDL)
Ithaca, NY (ITH)
Manchester, NH (MHT)
Montreal, Quebec, Canada (YUL)
New York-Kennedy (JFK)
New York-LaGuardia (LGA)
Newark, New Jersey (EWR)
Newburgh, New York (SWF)
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada (YOW)
Philadelphia, PA (PHL)
Portland, ME (PWM)
Providence, RI (PVD)
Rochester, NY (ROC)
Scranton, PA (AVP)
Syracuse, NY (SYR)
White Plains, NY (HPN)

JetBlue Winter StormJETBLUE

JetBlue has issued policies affecting travel to its Northeast hubs. You can find the most up-to-date information on fee waivers and affected airports here. Here’s the official line from their Travel Advisory, though:

Due to inclement weather forecasted in the Northeast, we will waive change/cancel fees and fare differences for Customers traveling Friday, February 8 through Saturday, February 9, to/from the following cities:

  • Boston (BOS)
  • Buffalo, NY (BUF)
  • Hartford, CT (BDL)
  • Newburgh (SWF)
  • Newark, NJ (EWR)
  • John F. Kennedy (JFK)
  • LaGuardia (LGA)
  • Westchester County (HPN)
  • Portland, ME (PWM)
  • Providence, RI (PVD)
  • Rochester, NY (ROC)
  • Syracuse, NY (SYR)

All customers traveling to/from the airports listed above are encouraged to check the status of their flight online prior to leaving for the airport. Customers with web-enabled cell phones and PDAs may check the status of their flight at mobile.jetblue.com.

Rebooking Terms & Conditions
Customers may rebook their flights for travel through Tuesday, February 12, 2013 by calling 1-800-JETBLUE (538-2583) prior to the departure time of their originally scheduled flight.  Customers with cancelled flights may also opt for a refund to the original form of payment by calling 1-800-JETBLUE (538-2583).  Original travel must have been booked on or before February 6, 2013.

SOUTHWEST

For now, Southwest is operating their scheduled service to/from all airports, but that’s likely to change in the next 24 hours. You can find up-to-date travel advisories here.

Here’s the official statement:

Southwest Airlines is anticipating winter weather conditions in the Midwest and Northeast over the next couple days. At this time, we are operating our scheduled flight service. As weather develops there is a possibility that our flights on Thursday, February 7; Friday, February 8; and Saturday, February 9 could be delayed, diverted, or cancelled.

It looks like passengers flying to/from the below cities are eligible to change or reschedule their flights per Southwest’s accommodation procedures. Select a city below for specific operational and flexible accommodations information.

To rebook your travel online, click here. Customers who did not purchase a ticket via southwest.com can call 1-800-435-9792 to speak with a Customer Service Representative.

UNITED

You can find all this information on United’s Travel Notices page. As the situation progresses, though, you can get all the up-to-date information on weather and operations at the airline’s Operations page. You should be able to make changes online, or by calling 1-800-864-8331.

Severe weather in the Northeast and Canada are impacting United’s operations. According to their website: “We may, at our sole discretion issue an exception policy designed to accommodate customers with restricted tickets who wish to change their travel in advance of any potential disruption.” Exception policies currently in effect are listed here and the travel dates affected are February 7,8 and 9.

Affected Airports:

  • Albany, NY (ALB)
  • Allentown, PA (ABE)
  • Altoona, PA (AOO)
  • Binghamton, NY (BGM)
  • Boston, MA (BOS)
  • Bradford, PA (BFD)
  • Buffalo, NY (BUF)
  • Burlington, VT (BTV)
  • Du Bois, PA (DUJ)
  • Erie, PA (ERI)
  • Halifax, NS Canada (YHZ)
  • Hartford, CT (BDL)
  • Harrisburg, PA (MDT)
  • Jamestown, NY (JHW)
  • Johnstown, PA (JST)
  • Manchester, NH (MHT)
  • Montreal, QC Canada (YUL – Trudeau)
  • New York/Newark, NJ (EWR – Liberty)
  • New York, NY (JFK)
  • New York, NY (LGA – LaGuardia)
  • Ottawa, ON Canada (YOW)
  • Philadelphia, PA (PHL)
  • Pittsburgh, PA (PIT)
  • Portland, ME (PWM)
  • Providence, RI (PVD)
  • Quebec City, QC Canada (YQB)
  • Rochester, NY (ROC)
  • State College, PA (SCE)
  • Syracuse, NY (SYR)
  • Toronto, ON Canada (YYZ)
  • White Plains, NY (HPN)
  • Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, PA (AVP)
  • Chicago, IL (ORD)

Flight Changes:

  • When rescheduled travel commences by February 13, 2013 change fees and fare differences will be waived.
  • For all other dates and ticket uses, the change fee will be waived, but a difference in fare may apply.
  • For flight Changes in Chicago, fees for same-day flight changes are waived within 24 hours of original departure. For all other changes, the change fee will be waived, but a difference in fare may apply.

US Air Winter Storm

US AIRWAYS

The airline has posted its current travel advisory and policies here.

Dates:

2/8/2013 1:00 AM ET through 2/9/2013 11:59 PM ET

Cities Affected:

Halifax, Canada ; Montreal, Canada ; Ottawa, Canada ; Toronto, Canada ; Hartford/Springfield, CT ; New Haven, CT ; Bangor, ME ; Portland, ME ; Boston, MA ; Manchester, NH ; Newark, NJ ; Albany, NY ; Binghamton, NY ; Buffalo, NY ; Elmira, NY ; Islip, NY ; Ithaca, NY ; New York, NY (JFK) ; New York, NY (Laguardia) ; Newburgh, NY ; Rochester, NY ; Syracuse, NY ; White Plains, NY ; Scranton, PA ; Providence, RI ; Burlington, VT

Revised Ticket Policies:

We’ve relaxed our change-fee policies. If your trip is affected, you can change your trip online (in most cases) — we’ll waive your change fees!

Here’s how:
• Book the same origin and destination
• If you are scheduled to travel on February 8 or 9, your travel date may be changed to travel on February 7, 10, 11 or 12.

You may have to pay to change your trip if:
• You change your origin and/or destination
• Your travel is outside the dates listed above
• There is a difference in fare

Please call if:
• Part or all of your trip is on another airline
• You don’t see a ‘Change my trip’ link when you pull up your reservation

Change your trip online at usairways.com/manageyourtrip. If you need help, please call 800-428-4322.

VIRGIN AMERICA

Affected airports at this time include only Boston Logan and New York JFK. Find the latest news and updates on the travel advisories page here, but the official statement is this:

Due to forecasted winter storms in the Northeast region which may cause flight delays, all travelers headed to or departing from Boston Logan International Airport (BOS) and John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) are strongly encouraged to remain up-to-date on their flight status before leaving for the airport by checking here: http://virginamerica.com/flight-status.html and signing up for Virgin America Flight Alerts here: http://virginamerica.com/flight-alerts.html.

Travel waiver: Guests with confirmed flights departing to or originating from BOS or JFK on February 8th – 9th, 2013, may change their travel date without paying change fees or the difference in fares through February 12, 2013 (within the same class of service as originally booked). Guests may also cancel their flight without penalty and receive a credit for future travel valid for up to one year. Guests flying on the above dates who have flexible travel plans, may change or cancel by calling 1.877.FLY.VIRGIN (1.877.359.8474). Changes and cancellations must be made prior to originally scheduled departure time and original travel must have been booked on or before February 6, 2013.

Travel Agents: No waiver code is required if changes/cancels/exchanges are made within the restrictions of the current policy. All inventory must be rebooked within the same cabin of service.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

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  • Ed

    I had a transcon mileage run planned this weekend going through BOS on AA. Got notification that my Saturday flights in and out of BOS were canceled. Called EXP desk and asked me if I needed a re-route but I told them this was an MR. Without even me asking, she said the full paid fare would get credited back to my CC.

  • Testport111

    Please stop calling it by it’s “name”. The weather channel started that bs to draw viewers and clicks. Please don’t be a click who’re and do the same.

  • http://www.batteredluggage.com/ W Brian Duncan (aka IPBrian)

    Great consolidated information post guys! Thanks!

  • Mkvizag

    Last night, I checked the delta flight status for this evening from NYC-SFO and it was cancelled, Part 1: Yaaay (other reasons), Part 2: Called Delta skymiles support team and within 5 minutes, I was on the phone with someone who cancelled it instantly and said points will post back in a few hours. Easy peasy. Infact, Delta has been very flexible in my requests for waiving fees on ticket changes over the phone the past few months although it can take a few POLITE calls to get someone who’s on your side :)

  • Mkvizag

    btw that was my award ticket

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