Airline waivers: Hurricanes Idalia + Franklin

Hurricane Idalia is expected to be a powerful and very dangerous Category 4 storm when it hits Florida early Wednesday.

So if you are in the storm’s expected path, make plans and evacuate when advised to.

The National Hurricane Center is also keeping tabs on Hurricane Franklin and Tropical Depression Eleven.

Airports, airlines, the FAA, and others are responding by closing terminals, rerouting flights and canceling hundreds of others, offering travel waivers, and generally urging travelers to be smart and stay safe.

Airports closing. Or ready to.

As noted in the FAA’s tweet above, several airports closed to all air traffic on Tuesday.

Noting that “TPA is not a shelter,” Tampa International Airport (TPA) closed early Tuesday morning, right after midnight.

“We will reopen when it’s safe to do so, following a damage assessment,” the airport said in its social media posts.

St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport (PIE), closed Tuesday afternoon, hoping to reopen Wednesday at 3 p.m., if possible.

And Sarasota Bradenton International Airport (SRQ) closed Tuesday evening at 7 pm, with plans to open Wednesday morning at 8 am “pending damage assessment.”

And, for now, Southwest Florida International Airport (RSW) in Fort Myers, FL remains open and operational.

Here’s what was posted on the airport’s Facebook Tuesday afternoon:

As of 3:45 p.m. on Aug. 29, most of the airlines at RSW plan to operate a normal schedule this evening and tomorrow. There have been changes on some flights with Breeze, Delta Air Lines and Southwest, so check with them before coming to the airport. We strongly recommend looking at your airline’s website for the best information on cancellations and delays as weather conditions can change quickly.

Jacksonville International Airport (JAX) remains open and operational as well and says it remains open “so long as the FAA and the airlines continue to safely operate.”

As the hurricane moves in Wednesday, other airports in the path may close as well.

Airlines canceling flights, offering travel waivers

Of course, even if an airport is open, it doesn’t mean flights are landing and taking off. Hundreds of flights have already been canceled and delayed and there will no doubt be more schedule disruptions in the coming hours and days.

Airlines have posted their travel waiver policies for passengers with tickets to, from, or through, many southeast airports.

Here are links to the travel waiver policies posted as of Tuesday morning:

Alaska Airlines


American Airlines The airline has posted travel alerts and waivers for Bermuda travel in response to Hurricane Franklin and for travel to, from, or through 12 airports in the southeast U.S.


Breeze Airways

Delta Air Lines has travel alerts posted for close to 20 airports.

Frontier Airlines 7 airports are covered by this travel alert.

Jet Blue The travel alert currently covers a half dozen airports.

Southwest Airlines 11 airports are currently showing a travel alert for Southwest Airlines flights.

United Airlines A travel alert for 9 airports is currently posted on United’s travel alert page.

As always, be sure to check with your airline before heading to the airport.

And stay safe!

Airports & air quality + Fun Hotel contest

Here’s another thing to check before heading to a northeast airport right now: the air quality.

Due to reduced visibility from wildfire smoke drifting down from Canada, on Wednesday, the FAA issued ground stops at New York City area airports. That, of course, created a ripple effect at other airports and is likely to continue for a while.

It’s not only air travel. Wednesday’s Yankees-White Sox game, theater performances, and many other events have been postponed due to poor air quality.

New graduate? Graduate Hotels has an offer.

(Photo credit: Steve Freihon Photography)

Graduate Hotels has a fun job opening for a fresh 2023 graduate.

From June 8 through July 7 the hip hotel chain is accepting applications (contest entries) for what it is calling its Victory Lap program.

The hotel is inviting recent graduates to submit 60-second videos highlighting “the spirit of their college town.”

Four winners will get hired for 10 weeks, for ‘salaries’ starting at $20,000 to travel to 16 cities that have Graduate Hotel properties to gather and create content highlighting those towns.

More details about the contest are available here.

Hurricane Ian Still Tormenting Travel

Courtesy The Weather Channel

Hurricane Ian was downgraded to a Category 1 hurricane late Wednesday evening, but that doesn’t mean the travel woes that wild weather brings are ended.

Early Thursday morning, FlightAware listed close to 2,000 flight cancellations within, into, or out of the United States. Not surprisingly, the airports with the most canceled flights were in Florida and the southeast.

A handful of airports remain closed for commercial operations

Orlando International Airport (MCO) ceased commercial operations Wednesday morning but remains open to open to accept emergency/aid and relief flights, if necessary. In preparation for Ian’s arrival, airport personnel tied down the jet bridges and covered the ticket counters. The airport’s Emergency Operations Center (EOC) is in full activation. And, depending on damage assessment, commercial operations are expected to resume Friday, MCO said in a statement.

Here are some of the other airports that closed in advance of Hurricane Ian’s arrival.

Airports open, with delays & cancellations.

Key West International Airport (EYW) plans to reopen at 7am on Thursday, September 29.

Airlines offering alerts and travel waivers

Here are links to the travel alerts and travel waiver offers from many domestic airlines. Many now cover flights to, from, or through airports in cities throughout Florida, Georgia, and the Carolinas.

If you’ve got a flight scheduled, be sure to keep checking back.

Alaska Airlines

American Airlines

Delta Air Lines

Frontier Airlines


Spirit Airlines

Southwest Airlines

United Airlines

Airlines & Airports Brace for Hurricane Ian

Courtesy The Weather Channel

Updated Tuesday, September 27, 2022

Hurricane Ian is causing airports to close and airlines to cancel flights and offer passengers travel waivers.

Orlando International Airport (MCO) plans to stop commercial operations at 10:30 am on Wednesday, September 28, until it is safe to resume flights.

Tampa International Airport (TPA) will suspend operations at 5 pm today.

Other airports in the region are closing operations Tuesday and Wednesday as well. Others are advising travelers to be prepared for canceled flights.

Airlines offering travel waivers due to Hurricane Ian

Many airlines have posted travel advisories and are offering no-fee travel waivers to passengers flying to, from, or through airports in Hurricane Ian’s path.

Alaska Airlines has a Hurricane Ian-related travel alert posted for 5 airports.

American Airlines has issued a travel alert for 20 airports in the western Caribbean and Florida, allowing customers whose travel plans are affected by Hurricane Ian to rebook without change fees.

Delta Airlines has a travel alert for 20 airports.

JetBlue’s travel alert for Hurricane Ian applies to travel through 8 airports.

The travel advisory for Southwest Airlines affects travel to and through a dozen airports.

And the United Airlines travel alert applies to 11 airports.

Of course, all this can change depending on what happens to the hurricane. So if you are traveling in the next few days, be sure to check with your airline to see if flights are operating.

Airports brace for Tropical Storm Elsa

Courtesy The Weather Channel

Tropical Storm Elsa is expected to make landfall in Florida on Wednesday.

In advance of the storm, Tampa International Airport (TPA) closed on Tuesday afternoon and is reopening Wednesday, early than expected, at 8:30 am.

TPA’s Operations team made the determination to open early after evaluating the airfield and airport facilities for storm damage from Elsa, which brought gusts of up to 41 miles per hour overnight.

The Airport did not sustain any damage from the storm. TPA’s roadways are clear, and the garages and rental car center are open.

Airlines alerts/fee waivers for Tropical Storm Elsa

Several airlines have issued alerts and future booking options/fee waivers for Tropical Storm Elsa. Including:

American Airlines – Alert covers travel to/from/through these cities:

  • Charleston, South Carolina (CHS)
  • Fort Myers, Florida (RSW)
  • Gainesville, Florida (GNV)
  • Hilton Head, South Carolina (HHH)
  • Jacksonville, Florida (JAX)
  • Key West, Florida (EYW)
  • Sarasota / Bradenton, Florida (SRQ)
  • Savannah, Georgia (SAV)
  • Tallahassee, Florida (TLH)
  • Tampa, Florida (TPA)

Delta Air Lines The alert covers flights to/from/through Tampa (TPA),Fort Meyers (RSW), Key West (EYW), and Sarasota (SRQ)

Here are the links to the Elsa-related travel alerts for Frontier, JetBlue, Spirit Airlines, United Airlines .