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Holiday travel could be affected by winter storm bringing snow, frigid temps

Holiday Travel
Posted at 1:07 PM, Dec 20, 2022
and last updated 2022-12-20 13:07:24-05

Winter weather might be causing headaches this week as people prepare to travel for Christmas.

An arctic front is set to move across the U.S. beginning Wednesday as it makes its way across the country.

The weather system is set to move through central states and then rapidly approach Mississippi by Thursday, which will see temperatures "rapidly drop and could fall by some 20 to 30 degrees or more in only a few hours," the National Weather Service said in a special weather statement Tuesday.

The center warned that "the rapid temperature drop will [be] accompanied by very strong and possibly damaging winds which will also produce dangerous and possibly life-threatening wind chill readings."

Those in Mississippi and Louisiana could face "the likelihood of extreme and prolonged freezing conditions for southern Mississippi and southeast Louisiana," the NWS said.

In Texas and New Mexico, the NWS predicts that those states will experience "bitterly cold wind chills below zero" on Friday.

Residents in western North Dakota and some parts of Michigan could expect light snow to enter their areas on Wednesday, the NWS predicted.

News of the cold weather has prompted some airlines to issue travel vouchers for those traveling for the upcoming holiday.

On Tuesday, Delta Airlines issued a travel advisory for airports in the Atlantic, northeast, northwest mountain, and Pacific northwest regions.

On its website, United is waiving its change fee and any difference in fare on qualifying tickets for flights departing on or before Dec. 28 at many U.S. airports due to the winter weather.

American Airlines said on its site that it is waiving change fees on qualifying tickets for those who plan to fly over the holidays at the 29 listed airports in the northeast that could be affected by winter weather.

Southwest issued a travel advisory for airports in the midwest, adding that those with qualifying tickets traveling Wednesday through Monday could rebook their flights "without paying any additional charge."