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Hurricane Irma impacts traffic at eight US airports Today's News

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Although Hurricane Irma has been downgraded to a tropical storm, nearly 12 500 flights were cancelled according to USA Today, and many airports have been affected.

At the time of publishing, Miami International Airport and Orlando International Airport were still closed and flights to Atlanta International Airport were still limited. According to Delta Air Lines, the following airports are to reopen today, September 12, pending damage assessments:

• Key West International Airport
• Tampa International Airport
• Daytona International Airport

The following other airports are also scheduled to reopen today following damage assessment:
• Miami International Airport
• Orlando International Airport
• Fort Lauderdale International Airport

Miami International Airport was closed yesterday, September 11, as a result of Hurricane Irma approaching Florida and the airport enduring gusts of nearly 100mph (161kph). The airport also sustained significant water damage throughout.

Passengers transiting at Atlanta International Airport are encouraged to make alternative plans via waivers on Delta. Delta has combined and consolidated waivers for customers transiting three dozen destinations where flights will be affected by Irma through September 17. Delta has also paused baggage and pet-in-cabin fees for customers travelling to or from impacted cities.

For a more comprehensive list or airports affected and their potential operations resumptions click here.

St Maarten was badly affected by the storms and Rolando Brison, St Maarten’s director of tourism, hopes it will reopen to flights within a week says Travel Weekly.

American Airlines is allowing affected passengers to change their trips with no change fee as Irma continues to impact its operations in Florida and the Caribbean. The airline issued a travel alert for more than 50 airports, including its Miami hub.

The airline has also capped its fares at US$99 (R1 279) each way for main cabin, and US$199 (R2 572) for premium cabin on direct, single-leg flights from all cities covered under the travel alert in Florida, as well as Charleston, S.C; Hilton Head, S.C.; Myrtle Beach, S.C.; and Savannah, Ga. These fares will apply for flights out of these locations through September 17.

In addition, the $99 (R 1260) fare cap also applies to tickets for those returning to these locations between September 10 and 17.

Many flights are already sold out, thus customers are encouraged to travel to the airport only if they have a confirmed ticket. 

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