WASHINGTON D.C. – If you’re traveling to or from the East Coast for the July 4 holiday weekend, check with your airline about potential weather-related disruption. One airline so far has waived its change fee policy to give consumers greater flexibility, just in case.
News of potentially dangerous inclement weather comes as one study cited by USA TODAY’s Chris Woodyard predicted that travel could rise 9% for the three-day weekend vs. last year’s July 4 weekend.
Delta on its website posts an inclement weather advisory, saying weather “may impact travel to/from/through the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast regions of the United States.” American told Travel Update on Twitter that its “weather team will put a policy in place once they deem it necessary.”
JetBlue so far is the only airline that has adopted a travel alert fee waiver policy for July 4 travel due to potentially disruptive and dangerous weather.
JetBlue customers may rebook flights for travel through Saturday, July 05, 2014 prior to the departure of your originally scheduled flight, JetBlue’s special notice says. Customers with cancelled flights may opt for a full refund. Note: Original travel must have been booked on or before Tuesday, July 01, 2014.
JetBlue’s waiver is in place for a variety of East Coast airports, including some that don’t believe they will be affected by the weather:
- Washington, DC (DCA)
- Washington, DC (IAD)
- Baltimore (BWI)
- Philadelphia (PHL)
- New York City (JFK)
- New York City (LGA)
- Westchester County, NY (HPN)
- Newburgh, NY (SWF)
- Newark, NJ (EWR)
- Worcester, MA (ORH)
- Boston (BOS)
- Providence, RI (PVD)
- Hartford, CT (BDL)
Travel Update has not yet seen other airlines adopt a weather-related fee waiver for any East Coast airports, although you can watch here for updates. Southwest Airlines, by the way, doesn’t charge change fees ever.
At the Philadelphia airport, spokeswoman Victoria Lupica says the Philly airport doesn’t expect disruption. “The last we heard, the storm has gone out to sea,” she told Travel Update.
Veteran fliers, of course, know that even the hint of a dangerous storm can sometimes cause an airport to change gears.
Lupica doesn’t expect disruption today or tomorrow, but she and I did talk about last summer. Twice last summer, two potential hurricanes caused airlines to move aircraft to other airports overnight and cancel all flights during the period, she told me. “In both situations, the airport was not affected, but it was done as a precautionary measure.”
Readers: Is the weather causing you to change or cancel your East Coast July 4 plans?
Photo below by Barb DeLollis. Hoping for blue skies for all!