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Airlines cancel most NYC-area flights ahead of snowstorm

Crews clean snow from a car parking lot at O’Hare International Airport in Chicago, Illinois, on January 26, 2021. (Photo by KAMIL KRZACZYNSKI / AFP) (Photo by KAMIL KRZACZYNSKI/AFP via Getty Images)

Kamil Krzaczynski | AFP | Getty Images

Airlines canceled most New York City-area flights scheduled for Monday ahead of a strong winter storm that’s expected to bring high winds and heavy snow to the region. Local officials also urged people to stay off roads.

Flight schedules were already drastically lower than the norm because of the Covid-19 pandemic and a host of travel restrictions.

More than 70% the departures scheduled from John F. Kennedy International Airport, or 151 flights, have been canceled as have 90%, or 106 flights from LaGuardia Airport, according to FlightAware, a flight-tracking site. More than 70% of the departures, 162 flights, from United Airlines hub Newark Liberty International Airport were also canceled. A snowstorm canceled about a quarter of departures from Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport on Sunday.

Airlines stopped charging ticket-change fees last year in an effort to boost bookings in the pandemic but several major carriers said they won’t charge fare differences for travelers affected by the winter storm.

Delta Air Lines and American Airlines said travelers can change their tickets to and from more than two-dozen airports in the mid-Atlantic and Northeast without paying a difference in fare if they can rebook by Saturday.

New York-based JetBlue Airways said travelers won’t have to pay the fare difference if they can travel by Friday while United had a similar policy if customers rebook Sunday. All the carriers encouraged customer to check with their airline for up-to-date information.

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