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13 February 2014 East Coast Winter Storm Travel Waivers & Impact to UA's Ops.

13 February 2014 East Coast Winter Storm Travel Waivers & Impact to UA's Ops.

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Old Feb 10, 14, 10:13 am
  #1  
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13 February 2014 East Coast Winter Storm Travel Waivers & Impact to UA's Ops.

Supposed to leave from EWR to AUA on Thursday, and it sounds like there's going to be rain/sleet/freezing rain/snow/lots of snow Wednesday night/Thursday.

Never had to deal with this before - what should I expect, other than frustration? The plane we're leaving on Thursday morning at 9am should arrive Wednesday night. Does that help or hurt our chances of actually leaving around when we're supposed to be leaving?

If the flight does get cancelled on Thursday, what are the odds of leaving Friday? And if the plane is going to be there already, would they ever move up the flight to get the plane out of there before the heavy snow comes?

Thanks.

Last edited by FlyinHawaiian; Feb 11, 14 at 4:45 am Reason: retitled thread
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Old Feb 10, 14, 11:21 am
  #2  
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UA, as do all carriers, will do its best not to fly an aircraft into bad WX when it may result in the aircraft getting stuck for a couple of days. At this point, there are just too many variables. And, even if Thursday is cancelled and Friday goes as scheduled, it's a long weekend and could well be that there are no seats.
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Old Feb 10, 14, 11:23 am
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Weather isn't the airline's fault. That is super important. They can just say "we can accommodate you in 3 weeks" and they are within their right.

Once they go into Waiver mode for the weather, get rerouted via somewhere that isn't getting hammered. Leave before the weather.
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Old Feb 10, 14, 12:13 pm
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Know you back up plans. Know what all you flight options are and where to re-route, know this information will help you.
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Old Feb 10, 14, 12:58 pm
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1) The flight won't leave early.

2) Friday is probably already heavily booked (it's a vacation destination after all), and I doubt they'll run an extra section for such a small market.
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Old Feb 10, 14, 1:35 pm
  #6  
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It seems like I may be a "victim" of the same storm. Oddly, it's been many years since I've dealt with this problem (although I had a JFK flight diverted last month after another aircraft slid off a runway).

My current thinking is to try to get out BEFORE the storm. If the storm is scheduled to start late Wednesday night, when is UA likely to issue a travel waiver for pax booked on Thursday? And once they do, can I assume they'd let me fly out Wednesday evening if I can find seats? Since my trip involves a connection to the West Coast, can I also assume they'd let me overnight in a connecting hub city on Wednesday if I needed to in order to find seats?

What particularly concerns me is that I've got a party of 5, so finding 5 seats during irregular ops would seem a challenge. At least it would be a slow travel day (Wednesday). I assume being a 1K only helps in that I'll have an easier time reaching an agent? And that the "same day change" policy doesn't help here because I want to fly the night before (within 24 hours, but not the "same day")?

Thanks for the help.
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Old Feb 10, 14, 1:49 pm
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Yes, get out ASAP if you need/want to be at your destination. Mid-February to the Caribbean is one of the busiest times of year. As AUA has very limited service compared to a place like SJU, you will unlikely make it if your flight is cancelled. The flights over the weekend are already oversold. Maybe you would get out a week from Wednesday if you are lucky.
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Old Feb 10, 14, 2:39 pm
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Best to not worry about it now, as there's not much you can do at this point besides change your flight to an earlier day.
As a rule, I always check out the NWS/NOAA site for the weather discussion. This includes aviation weather that the FAA and Ops use and is a good read to boot.
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Old Feb 10, 14, 2:51 pm
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Originally Posted by sfozrhfco View Post
Yes, get out ASAP if you need/want to be at your destination. Mid-February to the Caribbean is one of the busiest times of year. As AUA has very limited service compared to a place like SJU, you will unlikely make it if your flight is cancelled. The flights over the weekend are already oversold. Maybe you would get out a week from Wednesday if you are lucky.
I'm looking at their current Southeast travel waiver and it says the following:

•Fees for same-day flight changes are waived within 24 hours of original departure.
•For all other changes, the change fee will be waived, but a difference in fare may apply.

Read literally, if I wanted to switch my flight from Thursday night to Wednesday night, I couldn't do that under these rules for free unless the same bucket was available (good luck with that!). I assume/hope this isn't the way the rules are actually applied?
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Old Feb 11, 14, 3:45 am
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Weather delays/cancellations?

This is kinda new to me as I've never been in a situation where a storm can affect a major trip of mine. So here goes the whole, "I'm sorry if I'm in the wrong thread" disclaimer. Actually, I'm not.

But anyways, I'm IAD to AMS early Thursday evening. I booked through an overseas travel agent (remember the Wideroe mistake fares in November?) (Waits for the OMG! He mentioned mistake fares and this should be quadruple stickied on another board and has no business here!!! reply)

So once (if) the travel alert comes down, do I call United directly to rebook? Or do I have to call the agent? Plus...what are my chances that I incur fees (whether the same fare bucket or not is available (booked in K FYI)) even on a rebook due to a weather event?

I looked into rebooking yesterday but United wanted to charge $950 + $300 for leaving on Wednesday versus Thursday (pre-potential weather alert) so obviously I didn't pull the trigger.

I'd love to get out of town and get somewhere clear of the weather tomorrow around midday. Any tips would be great. I guess I should just stay glued to the alerts page on United and then ring them if/when one is issued? Or do I contact the agent?
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Old Feb 11, 14, 4:40 am
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Be proactive and put the damn waiver out. We are supposed to get 16 inches at EWR.

My brother is getting married in Mexico and I can rebook but if they wait forever with the waiver, the best man wont be at the wedding.
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Old Feb 11, 14, 6:20 am
  #12  
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I am in ATL right now and puzzled by what is happening. Delta has already canceled 500 flights but it does not appear United has canceled any. It appears that tonight and tomorrow is the worst, going to try to get out this afternoon
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Old Feb 11, 14, 6:26 am
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Yeah, having a UA airline ticket out of the Mid-Atlantic/Northeast for Thursday kind of sucks right now. All the meteorologists seem to think the I-95 corridor is going to get slammed.

http://www.accuweather.com/en/weathe...rsday/23156019

But UA has said nothing. And once they do say something, I don't know how much it will help. Their current Southern exception doesn't seem to give you "any" available seat, just seats in your fare bucket. And because it's a major Holiday weekend, your chances of finding seats on Friday would seem to be low. I think the only thing that might work is leaving tomorrow -- and even then, I'm not seeing a large amount of inventory.

I've bumping up against a hotel cancellation deadline for my trip today. I guess I'll call them and explain my situation. From my experience, hotels tend to be pretty good about waiving their cancellation policies in situations like this.
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Old Feb 11, 14, 6:43 am
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Originally Posted by iahphx View Post
Yeah, having a UA airline ticket out of the Mid-Atlantic/Northeast for Thursday kind of sucks right now. All the meteorologists seem to think the I-95 corridor is going to get slammed.

http://www.accuweather.com/en/weathe...rsday/23156019

But UA has said nothing. And once they do say something, I don't know how much it will help. Their current Southern exception doesn't seem to give you "any" available seat, just seats in your fare bucket. And because it's a major Holiday weekend, your chances of finding seats on Friday would seem to be low. I think the only thing that might work is leaving tomorrow -- and even then, I'm not seeing a large amount of inventory.
I'm in the same boat - have a reservation out of Dulles Thursday morning. I may take a flight out midday tomorrow.
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Old Feb 11, 14, 7:21 am
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Originally Posted by USAJerry View Post
This is kinda new to me as I've never been in a situation where a storm can affect a major trip of mine. So here goes the whole, "I'm sorry if I'm in the wrong thread" disclaimer. Actually, I'm not.

But anyways, I'm IAD to AMS early Thursday evening. I booked through an overseas travel agent (remember the Wideroe mistake fares in November?) (Waits for the OMG! He mentioned mistake fares and this should be quadruple stickied on another board and has no business here!!! reply)

So once (if) the travel alert comes down, do I call United directly to rebook? Or do I have to call the agent? Plus...what are my chances that I incur fees (whether the same fare bucket or not is available (booked in K FYI)) even on a rebook due to a weather event?

I looked into rebooking yesterday but United wanted to charge $950 + $300 for leaving on Wednesday versus Thursday (pre-potential weather alert) so obviously I didn't pull the trigger.

I'd love to get out of town and get somewhere clear of the weather tomorrow around midday. Any tips would be great. I guess I should just stay glued to the alerts page on United and then ring them if/when one is issued? Or do I contact the agent?
I had the same issue last month on my Wideroe tix and UA took it over and reissued me on the next flight out. My advice: as soon as the waiver comes out, try to call and get them to rebook you on alternate routing or choose to go on the next day (or day after)..
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