Here are my go-to websites and apps in weather delays and cancelations …
1. Research: I don’t leave home without knowing the weather of where I am and going – including layover airports. I use Weather.com and this handy traveler’s weather page I made that even includes the turbulence forecast.
If there is a huge storm with mass cancelations I check with the airline to see if they changed their change policies so I can rebook without a penalty and fly when there won’t be any hassles.
Airline Travel Policies
Air Canada | Air Tran| Alaska | American Airlines| British Airways | Delta | Frontier | Hawaiian | JetBlue | Southwest | Spirit | Sun Country| United | US Airways | Virgin America | WestJet | Every Airline Website and Phone Number
If there’s disruptive weather in any of the destinations I will then check The FAA’s (Federal Aviation Administration) Flight Delay Information – Air Traffic Control System Command Center. It lists general airport conditions at the U.S.’s top 23 major airports.
2. Sign Up: Since the Air Traffic Control System Command Center is not flight-specific I always signup for flight status notifications offered for free by each airline. They will send you text or email messages.
3. Load Up: Be sure to load your phone with your airline(s) toll free phone number(s) just in case there is a cancelation. Tip: If your flight is canceled then get in line as soon as possible and also get on the phone and call the airline directly. Usually the airline representative at the call center can rebook you on a flight faster than the line moves to speak to customer service or the gate agent. Important: Time is of the essence since there aren’t a lot of flights these days with empty seats and you want to get one before they are all gone. You can also try rebooking by using your smart phone or laptop but most airlines aren’t that advanced yet. Good To Know: Here’s a website that I created which has every airline phone number in the world. It’s called AirlineNumbers.com.
4. Follow: I also like to follow my airline and airports on Twitter. On my Twitter handle (@JohnnyJet) I have all kinds of lists including Airlines on Twitter, U.S. Airports on Twitter and International Airports on Twitter… Most airports are not that active so don’t get your hopes up but there are a bunch of airlines that are amazing and some can even help you rebook by reaching out to them. My favorite is American Airlines (@AmericanAir). They respond immediately.
Here’s another useful Travel Twitter Resource Page.
5. Useful Apps/Websites: I’m a fan of FlightCaster.com – I can get a good idea if my domestic flight will be on time or not by putting in my flight info 6 hours before.
Like every traveler – including Leo one of my favorite Apps is TripIt.com. They have a free version but their pro version is worth the $49 a year if you travel a lot.
In case there are mass cancelations I don’t wait for an airline to reserve me a hotel room. I jump on it as soon as I know I’m spending the night. My favorite app for last minute hotel rooms is HotelTonight. But I also use Priceline.com and in case I need to drive somewhere I carry numbers of car rental agencies.
6. Get Help: In case you are in a real bind and didn’t book through a travel agent you can call CrankyConcierge.com. For a fee they will help you make other flight arrangements, find a hotel or transportation and assist you in resolving disputes.