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Although Hurricane Michael made its historic landfall on Wednesday, Thursday has already surpassed Wednesday as the day with the most flight cancellations from the storm. Michael weakened to a tropical storm early Thursday, but the storm is continuing to sweep through the Southeast, brushing by airline hubs of Atlanta (ATL) and Charlotte (CLT) — although both will be spared a direct hit.
According to FlightAware’s flight cancellation tracker, a total of 339 flights were canceled in the US on Wednesday, and not all of these were due to Hurricane Michael. Meanwhile, 510 flights have proactively been canceled for Thursday by 7am ET. More than 60% of the flight cancellations are flights to/from Charlotte, NC (CLT), which has already seen 313 flight cancellations. Besides 2 Lufthansa flight cancellations, almost all of the other flight cancellations are by American Airlines and its American Eagle operators (PSA Airlines, Piedmont and Republic).
Other airports with heavy cancellations so far are:
- Raleigh/Durham (RDU): 56 cancellations
- Charleston (CHS): 48 cancellations
- Savannah (SAV): 31 cancellations
- Atlanta (ATL): 31 cancellations
- Washington DC Reagan National (DCA): 29 cancellations
Airport Reopening Times
There are currently 10 airports closed in the Southeast due to Hurricane Michael. The good news is that seven of these are currently scheduled to reopen by 1pm Thursday:
- Bob Sikes Airport (CEW): 11am Oct. 11
- Destin Executive Airport (DTS): 11am Oct. 11
- Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport (ECP): 11am Oct. 11
- Middle Georgia Regional Airport (MCN): 12pm Oct. 11
- Naval Air Station Pensacola (NPA): 12pm Oct. 11
- Dothan Regional Airport (DHN): 1pm Oct. 11
- Southwest Georgia Regional Airport (ABY): 1pm Oct. 11
- Robins Air Force Base (WRB): 4pm Oct. 11
- Apalachicola Regional Airport (AAF): 1pm Oct. 12
- Tyndall Air Force Base (PAM): 11am Oct. 15
Protect Your Travels
Hurricane season — and the upcoming winter weather — is yet another reminder to book flights with a card that offers solid trip delay and cancellation insurance. When I got stuck in Japan for four extra days when a typhoon swept through, I was very grateful for the Citi Prestige’s trip delay protection, which reimbursed $1,000 of our expenses.
Although Citi Prestige used to be my go-to for booking flights, a recent devaluation to the card’s travel benefits knocked it out of its top spot. Currently, I’m using my Chase Sapphire Reserve to book my flights going forward. Other top choices are the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card, Citi / AAdvantage Executive World Elite Mastercard and the Citi ThankYou Premier Card.
Feature image via Getty Images