Winter weather is expected to make an appearance over much of Iowa today, on what’s predicted to be one of the busiest travel days of the year. Chris Hills is a former air traffic controller who now does analysis for an on-line travel agency. Hills says Iowans who are flying today may run into slow-downs, down the line.
“You guys do have flurries and snow forecast for you, however, flights are getting in and out of the airports on time,” Hills says. “If they are traveling to one of the busier hubs that’s expecting bad weather, like Chicago O’Hare, that’s when passengers could start seeing delays.” While the roads may look fine in Davenport, Des Moines, Cedar Rapids and Omaha, Hills says you need to check on all of your flight connections.
“We’re expecting 60 to 75-minute delays into O’Hare later on this afternoon,” Hills says. “If you’re traveling to the East Coast, we have low clouds and rain showers from New York all the way down into Washington D.C. and there are delays because of this weather.” For Iowans who haven’t flown in a year or two, Hills says they need to bring along extra cash to pay the baggage fees, usually around 25-dollars per bag, each way.
“Almost all airlines are charging for checked bags, but if want to avoid those fees, pack a carry-on,” Hills says. “If you want to avoid extra fees, if you do have to check bags, make sure you pack light because there are weight limits and if you go over those weight limits, the airlines are going to hit you with another fee.” While many Iowans will be enjoying Thanksgiving meals with their far-away families, Hills says if they want to take a taste of that feast home with them, they’ll have to follow the rules.
“One thing people don’t really think about, but it’s important around this time of year is, when you’re traveling back home and you’re bringing leftovers, a lot of those leftovers fall under the 3-1-1 rule, things like gravy and cranberry sauce,” Hills says. “If you are going to bring that home, you’ll have to check that or else try and get that into a three-ounce container.”
That 3-1-1 rule says that all liquids and gels need to be in three-ounce containers, with all the containers in a clear one-quart plastic bag, and only one bag is allowed per passenger. For more information, visit the Transportation Security Administration website at: “www.tsa.gov“.