Winter Weather, Costly Travel Trouble

Just one look at the arrivals and departures boards at Bradley International Airport had passengers seeing red. About 35 to 40 flights had been canceled for Friday and Saturday. Most of them were heading to mid-Atlantic destinations like Washington, D.C. and Philadelphia.
"It's the domino effect. I think the airlines are trying to make a proactive business decision and safety reasons. They don't want planes, equipment and passengers in places where they're going to get stuck," said John Wallace, Director of Communications at Bradley International Airport.
Beverly Brandon runs Bradley World Class Travel and has had to work around the cancellations to get her clients to their destinations. Many are trying to get back to Washington, D.C. from California. Another couple had their flight canceled going from Bradley to Philly to Punta Cana.
"The fares were going to be $591 more per person should they choose to wait one week, Saturday to Saturday, so they didn't want to do that, add another thousand dollars to their trip, which they'd already booked a year ago," said Brandon.
Brandon arranged for them to leave Monday instead, without an additional cost. While many airlines are offering customers the chance to re-book without a rebooking fee, Brandon says there could be other costs involved.
"They do not protect the new fare. If they booked two or three months ago and the fare was $575, today it's $691, they're going to pay the additional cost, but they don't have to pay the $150 change," said Brandon.
She also says customers who book flights online may have difficulty changing plans.
"Even we as travel agents have trouble getting through to the airline, and we have specials numbers," said Brandon.
Bradley Airport reminds passengers to keep track of their flights by calling ahead or checking online to make sure the flights aren't delayed or canceled.
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