The whats and hows of airline weather waivers

When a huge snowtorm hits, it always starts with a flurry — of airline weather waivers.

If you’re a person who flies but you don’t what that those are, you should. Weather waivers can save you time, money or even your vacation or business trip.

Sometimes called “travel advisories” or “alerts,” weather waivers are when an airline waives its rebooking rules, fees or both for travelers who want to change flights to avoid sleeping on an airport floor.

Let’s read that again: The airlines don’t collect a fee and do allow you to change your plans if you’re flying to, from or through a region where they’ve issued a weather waiver. That’s nearly as rare as a baby unicorn.

But you need to read the fine print, which varies from airline to airline.

First, assume nothing, even if the weather reports are dire. Waivers are generally announced on the airline’s website, and some airlines might not announce waivers even if others do. The airlines generally put tight restrictions on when you can reschedule fee-free.

Here are links to waivers for Nemo:

On the Web

Air traffic delays: www.fly.faa.gov.

Delta waiver details: http://bit.ly/RR8vwN

American waiver details: http://bit.ly/VJzwOQ

Sun Country waiver details: http://bit.ly/14YQsb8

United waiver details: http://bit.ly/PwL8XY

Southwest waiver details: http://bit.ly/YWtzVa

Air Tran waiver details: www.airtran.com/weather/default.aspx

US Airways waiver details: http://bit.ly/5wVLVo

Get travel news at www.sctimes. com/travel, on the blog at www.sctimes.com/lisa, on Twitter @lisasschwarz, and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/sctimeslisa. Send her questions at lschwarz@ stcloudtimes.com.
Lisa Schwarz

About Lisa Schwarz

By day, I'm a St. Cloud Times editor guiding coverage of politics, government, public safety and business beats. By night, I'm leading the cubicle jailbreak as the Times Traveler. Follow me on Twitter at www.twitter.com/LisaSSchwarz and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/sctimeslisa
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