Isaac ruins travel plans

Travel and tourism have been badly affected throughout south Florida in recent days because of tropical storm, Isaac.

Tourists and travellers were stranded at airports and ports after flights and cruise ships were cancelled due to bad weather. However, it is expected that travel will resume from Tuesday after the storm started to abate and show signs of moving on.

Stranded passengers from all over the world had no choice but to sit and wait for the storm to pass after learning that their flights could be delayed for two to three days. Weather forecasts suggest that while air and sea travel in south Florida could return to normal by Tuesday, cities along the nation’s northern Gulf will continue to suffer weather-related restrictions.

On Monday, local travellers were left stranded after 158 flights were cancelled and 117 delayed at Miami-Dade. About a dozen flights were cancelled and 30 delayed at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport. Port Miami had been closed until Monday afternoon and some cruise ships were delayed. Cruise passengers had to stay on their ships for longer than expected and had to join the queues to search for temporary lodging or to change flight plans after landing. Some cruise lines offered compensation to clients for the delay in reaching port.

Hundreds of flights to New Orleans are due to be cancelled on Tuesday and Wednesday.

For their part, air carriers are mostly allowing customers to change their flights without penalty, even though some conditions apply. Most firms are waiving change fees and some are not charging for the difference in rebooked fares.