Local News

Travel delays clearing at RDU

Posted December 29, 2010 12:41 p.m. EST
Updated December 29, 2010 6:33 p.m. EST

— After three days of extensive delays, cancellations and competition for seats, air travelers at Raleigh-Durham International Airport got some relief Wednesday.

Departure boards showed scattered delays, but most flights were on schedule. The Sunday blizzard that blanketed the Northeast and shut down all three of New York's major airports for 24 hours caused a ripple effect across the U.S. that was still unwinding Wednesday.

About 300 flights in an out of RDU had been canceled since Christmas night, when snow from the storm system began falling in North Carolina. By Wednesday, most flights were landing or taking off on time, RDU spokeswoman Mindy Hamlin said.

"Just today, we began to see things working themselves out," Hamlin said Wednesday afternoon. "(We've had) just a few cancellations and delays to the New York area."

Airports from Washington, D.C., to Boston began to return to normal schedules Tuesday, and travelers scrambled to snag seats or stand-by slots in an attempt to recoup their holiday week plans.

Wade Coppinger said he was supposed to land in Raleigh Monday night, but a lack of a plane left him stranded in Nashville, Tenn., until Wednesday.

"It's great to be back. I'm done with flying right now," Coppinger said.

Because of the backlog, passengers could expect packed flights and should check with their airlines about availability and schedule before leaving for their flight, Hamlin said. Most airlines have policies and plans posted on their websites about changing travel dates.