Latest Nor’easter Forces Airlines to Cancel More Than 3,500 Flights; Up to 18 Inches of Snow Could Fall in NYC

Mar 21, 2018

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Update: Some offers mentioned below are no longer available – Citi Prestige Card

Snow, wind and rain — three words those in the Northeast have heard on rotation since the beginning of March when the first bomb cyclone brought its powerful winds and heavy snow to the region. On Wednesday, the fourth nor’easter in about three weeks has already canceled more than 3,500 flights across the region.

As of Wednesday morning, heavy, wet snow and strong winds are picking up intensity throughout the mid-Atlantic and into the Northeast. The National Weather Service’s latest forecast predicts that up to 18 inches of snow could fall in New York City and surrounding areas. Snow and strong winds are expected to continue through Wednesday along the Interstate 95 corridor from near Washington, DC, to southern New England. The Weather Channel forecasts that although the winds aren’t expected to be as strong as with nor’easters earlier this month, when combined with heavy snow, there is still the chance for downed trees and power outages. Coastal flooding and beach erosion remain a concern.

As of 8:45am on Wednesday, there have been 3,537 cancellations on flights within, into or out of the US, according to flight-tracking website FlightAware. Newark (EWR) has the most cancellations (434; or 66% of its flights), followed by LaGuardia (411; 71%) and JFK (291; 47%). However, individual airports are painting a bleaker picture.

As for airlines with the most cancellations, American has canceled 452 flights, Republic has canceled 423, JetBlue has canceled 403, Southwest 381 and United 367. In addition, most international airlines have preemptively canceled flights bound for the region to avoid diversions similar to those in January when an A380 landed at Newburgh (SWF).

All major US airlines have travel waivers in place for travelers with flexible plans — some are separated into two different waivers. If you can’t delay your itinerary, airlines aren’t going to be responsible for paying for your meals or hotels in the case of weather-related delays/cancellations. But some top cards have flight delay/cancellation insurance that can reimburse you for weather issues, including the Citi Prestige ($500 per passenger for 3+ hour delay), the Chase Sapphire Reserve ($500 per ticket for 6+ hour or overnight delay) and Chase Sapphire Preferred Card ($500 per ticket for 12+ hour or overnight delay).

As of 8:30am Wednesday, here are the travel waivers covering this storm:

Alaska Airlines

  • Travel dates: March 20-22
  • Airports affected: Baltimore (BWI); Boston (BOS); New York – Kennedy (JFK); New York – LaGuardia (LGA); Newark (EWR); Philadelphia (PHL); Washington, DC – Reagan (DCA); Washington, DC – Dulles (IAD)
  • Must have purchased your ticket by March 19
  • Rebooked travel must be completed by March 28
  • You may request a refund if you choose not to travel at all. Tickets must be exchanged or refunded on or before March 22. Rebook your flight or apply for a refund online.

American Airlines

  • Travel dates: March 20-21
  • Airports affected: Allentown, Pennsylvania (ABE); Baltimore, Maryland (BWI); Boston, Massachusetts (BOS); Harrisburg, Pennsylvania (MDT); Hartford, Connecticut (BDL); Islip, New York (ISP); Manchester, New Hampshire (MHT); New Haven, Connecticut (HVN); New York Kennedy, New York (JFK); New York LaGuardia, New York (LGA); Newark, New Jersey (EWR); Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (PHL); Providence, Rhode Island (PVD); Stewart Newburgh, New York (SWF); Washington Dulles, Washington DC (IAD); Washington Reagan, Washington DC (DCA); White Plains/Westchester County, New York (HPN); Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, Pennsylvania (AVP)
  • Must have purchased your ticket by March 18
  • Rebook travel anytime between March 18-25
  • You can’t change your origin or destination city. Must rebook in same cabin or pay the difference.

Delta

  • Travel dates: March 20-21
  • Airports covered: Allentown, PA (ABE); Baltimore, MD (BWI); Boston, MA (BOS);  Harrisburg, PA (MDT); Hartford, CT (BDL); Manchester, New Hampshire (MHT); New York – Kennedy, NY (JFK); New York – LaGuardia, NY (LGA); Newark, NJ (EWR); Newburgh, NY (SWF); Philadelphia, PA (PHL); Providence, RI (PVD); Scranton, PA (AVP); Washington Reagan, DC (DCA); Washington Dulles, DC (IAD); White Plains, NY (HPN)
  • Ticket must be reissued by March 25
  • Rebooked travel must begin no later than March 25
  • When rescheduled travel occurs beyond March 25, 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. If travel is not able to be rescheduled within these guidelines, customers may cancel their reservation and apply any unused value of the ticket toward the purchase of a new ticket for a period of one year from the original ticket issuance. Applicable change fee and fare difference will apply for new travel dates. Final travel must be completed by end of ticket validity.

Frontier

  • Travel dates: March 20-21
  • Airports covered: New York LaGuardia (LGA); New York Islip (ISP); Philadelphia (PHL); Providence (PVD); Trenton (TTN); Washington National (DCA); Washington Dulles (IAD)
  • Must have bought your ticket by March 19
  • Rebook travel anytime through March 30
  • Origin and destination cities may be changed. Customers whose flights are cancelled may request a refund. Online Refund Form.

JetBlue

  • Mid-Atlantic
    • Travel dates: March 20-21
    • Airports covered: Baltimore, MD (BWI); Pittsburgh, PA (PIT); Washington, DC (DCA); Washington, DC (IAD)
    • Must have bought your ticket by March 19
    • Rebook travel anytime through March 19-23
    • To rebook travel or request a refund online, click here. If you are already checked in for your flight, call JetBlue at 1-800-JETBLUE (538-2583) for assistance with rebooking or a credit.
  • Northeast/New England
    • Travel dates: March 21-22
    • Airports covered: Boston, MA (BOS); Hartford, CT (BDL); New York, NY (JFK); New York, NY (LGA); Newark, NJ (EWR); Newburgh, NY (SWF); Portland, ME (PWM); Providence, RI (PVD); White Plains, NY (HPN); Worcester, MA (ORH)
    • Must have bought your ticket by March 19
    • Rebook travel anytime through March 19-24
    • To rebook travel or request a refund online, click here. If you are already checked in for your flight, call JetBlue at 1-800-JETBLUE (538-2583) for assistance with rebooking or a credit.

Southwest

  • Mid-Atlantic
    • Travel dates: March 20-21
    • Airports covered: Baltimore (BWI); Philadelphia (PHL); Pittsburgh (PIT); Washington – Dulles (IAD); Washington – National (DCA)
    • Customers who are holding reservations on these dates, and want to alter their travel plans may rebook in the original class of service or travel standby (within 14 days of their original date of travel between the original city-pairs and in accordance with Southwest’s accommodation procedures) without paying any additional charge.
  • Northeast/New England
    • Travel dates: March 21-22
    • Airports covered: Boston (BOS); Hartford (BDL); Islip (ISP); Manchester (MHT); New York – LaGuardia (LGA); Newark (EWR); Portland (PWM); Providence (PVD)
    • Customers who are holding reservations on these dates, and want to alter their travel plans may rebook in the original class of service or travel standby (within 14 days of their original date of travel between the original city-pairs and in accordance with Southwest’s accommodation procedures) without paying any additional charge.

Spirit

  • Mid-Atlantic/Northeast
    • Travel dates: March 20-21
    • Airports covered: Atlantic City, NJ (ACY); Baltimore, MD (BWI); Newark, NJ (EWR); New York, NY (LGA); Philadelphia, PA (PHL); Pittsburgh, PA (PIT)
    • Modification charge/fare difference waived through March 24. After this date, the modification charge is waived, by a fare difference may apply.
  • New England
    • Travel dates: March 21
    • Airports covered: Boston, MA (BOS); Hartford, CT (BDL)
    • Modification charge/fare difference waived through March 24. After this date, the modification charge is waived, by a fare difference may apply.

United

  • Travel dates: March 20-21
  • Airports covered: Baltimore, MD (BWI); Boston, MA (BOS); Harrisburg, PA (MDT); Hartford, CT (BDL); Manchester, NH (MHT); New York/Newark, NJ (EWR); New York-Kennedy, NY (JFK); New York-LaGuardia, NY (LGA); Philadelphia, PA (PHL); Pittsburgh, PA (PIT); Portland, ME (PWM); Providence, RI (PVD); Washington, DC – Dulles (IAD); Washington-National, DC (DCA); Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, PA (AVP)
  • The change fee and any difference in fare will be waived for new United flights departing on or before March 24, as long as travel is rescheduled in the originally ticketed cabin (any fare class) and between the same cities as originally ticketed.​​

Virgin America

  • Travel dates: March 20-22
  • Airport covered: Baltimore (BWI); Boston (BOS); New York, Kennedy (JFK); New York, LaGuardia (LGA); Newark (EWR); Philadelphia (PHL); Washington, DC – Reagan (DCA); Washington, DC – Dulles (IAD)
  • Tickets must have been purchased by: March 19
  • [Virgin] will waive the change fees and the difference in the price of the ticket if the new travel is booked to or from the affected cities in the same cabin and completed on or before March 28, 2018.  Additional taxes and fees may apply. You may request a refund if you choose not to travel at all. Tickets must be exchanged or refunded on or before March 22, 2018.
  • To modify an existing reservation during this period, you may contact [Virgin America’s] Call Center at 1.877.FLY.VIRGIN* (877.359.8474) for assistance. Or manage your reservation online: Change your flight. Cancel or refund your flight.

No waivers at this time from: Hawaiian.

 

Featured image by Boston Globe / Getty Images.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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.