How to book a flight for free

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AAlthough Henri has gone from hurricane to tropical storm, his heavy rains are expected to wreak havoc on travel in the coming days in seven New England and Mid-Atlantic states.

Many travelers whose flights are affected by the storm can change reservations without a change fee, but what is considered an impacted flight and the timing for changing reservations is different for each airline. All major airlines except one stipulate that the original flight must have been booked by August 20. (For United Airlines customers, tickets must have been purchased by August 19.)

Here is a user guide to follow the rules of the major airlines.

American Airlines

American has a travel alert for 15 airports in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York and Rhode Island. Customers who booked a flight to or from these airports on Sunday or Monday can rebook with no change fees as long as the flights are changed before Monday 23 August. Any fare difference will be canceled as long as the changed flights take place before Monday August 30th. in the same service cabin as originally reserved. Customers can reschedule their trip in line or by contacting reservations at 800-433-7300.

Delta Airlines

Delta has issued a notice for 10 airports in Maine, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York and Rhode Island. Customers who booked a flight to or from these airports on Sunday or Monday can rebook with no change fees. As long as the modified trip takes place no later than Thursday, August 26, in the same service cabin as the one originally booked, any fare difference will be canceled. Customers can reschedule their trip online or on the Fly Delta app.

United Airlines

United has a travel waiver for nine airports in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York and Rhode Island. The exemption applies to bookings of a flight to or from these airports until Tuesday, August 24. Passengers can rebook with no change fees as long as travel is booked in the same cabin class and between the same cities as originally issued. Travelers can find their reservation and select “change flight” to search for other flights.

Southwest Airlines

Southwest has issued a travel alert for eight airports in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York and Rhode Island. Passengers booked on an originally scheduled flight to or from these airports on Sunday and Monday may rebook without change charges as long as the trip is booked in the same cabin class and between the same cities as originally issued. Travel must take place within 14 days of the originally booked flight. Customers who have booked directly through Southwest can reschedule their flights online or via the Southwest app. Those who have booked through a third party should call 1-800-435-9792 to reach customer service.

JetBlue Airways

JetBlue has an exemption for 12 airports in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York and Rhode Island. Customers who booked a flight to or from these airports on Sunday or Monday can rebook with no change fees, provided the new flights depart no later than Thursday 26 August and the trip is booked in the same service cabin than the one originally reserved. Customers must book their flights in line before the departure time of their originally scheduled flight. If the flight has been canceled, travelers can also opt for a refund.


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