Iowans who plan to fly within the next several days should take heed. Northwest Airlines is taking the unusual step of canceling flights –up to a week in advance– due to a backlog of maintenance on planes. Des Moines travel agent Terry Beech says the move by Northwest is a surprise.Beech says the fortunate thing is — the cancellations are being made with enough advance notice so people can reschedule their trips, instead of having all of their holiday travel plans ruined.Beech says paper tickets are the best ticket at this busy travel time, since electronic or e-tickets aren’t always reliable. She also recommends people check in with their travel agents a few days before a flight, and the day of a flight.Northwest is calling passengers whose flights are effected to re-book them. The airline runs about 17-hundred flights every day.
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