Snowstorm grounds hundreds of flights, snarling post-Thanksgiving travel

Key Points
  • The storm hit Chicago Sunday night and is expected to bring low visibility and high winds.
  • More than 1,000 flights were grounded from Chicago's major airports.
  • Chicago O'Hare is a hub of both United and American Airlines.
Midwest snowstorm disrupts post-holiday travel

Airlines canceled close to 700 flights to or from Chicago on Monday after a snowstorm that swept through the U.S. Midwest continued to snarl travel at the start of the workweek.

The snowstorm grounded more than 1,000 flights on Sunday, a busy post-Thanksgiving travel day.

The National Weather Service on Monday warned motorists about icy roads, high winds and low visibility. Overnight, it warned drivers to stay off the road unless it was for an emergency trip.

One last gasp of the winter storm with snow, blowing snow, and reduced visibility. Snowy/icy roads

Airlines at Chicago O'Hare International Airport and Midway International Airport called off 914 flights on Sunday, according to flight-tracking site More than a hundred others were canceled in and out of Kansas City, while another 500 flights were delayed.

O'Hare is a hub for both United Airlines and American Airlines. American Airlines waived date-change fees for travelers booked to and from 20 cities in the Midwest if they can travel through Nov. 29. Spirit Airlines also waived fees for date changes through Nov. 29 for tickets in and out of Chicago and Kansas City, due to the storm.

Southwest Airlines said travelers wouldn't have to pay the fare difference to change their tickets in and out of Chicago's Midway, Des Moines, Detroit, Grand Rapids, Kansas City, Milwaukee, Omaha and Wichita. The airline normally doesn't charge travelers a flat fee to change their travel dates.

Airlines in recent years have encouraged travelers to rebook flights ahead of a storm to avoid having travelers stranded at the airport. They will also cancel large numbers of flights ahead of a major storm to avoid having crews and aircraft out of position or stuck when the bad weather passes.

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