Current situations at airports
5 P.M. UPDATE:
There are still a number of delays for flights departing BWI Airport, so if you're heading there make sure to check in with your airline. Also, leave some extra time to find parking if you're heading out this late in the day.
At Dulles, flights heading to Newark and Paris (respectively) were delayed, with no other reported delays. Parking remained open in all lots.
At National, there were no current delays to report. Parking remained in all lots, even the economy lot (which has eight spots available right now).
The FAA is reporting wind-related delays at Newark airport by an average of two hours. At JFK airport, the wind-relate delays are an average of 50 minutes.
Before you head out, it's always good to check with your airline to see if your travel plans might be affected:
4:30 P.M. UPDATE:
The delays from BWI Airport were not out of the ordinary, said Jonathan Dean, an airport spokesman. The crowds have been what they expected and there were brisk winds, but he said there were no significant issues.
Parking remains at the airport, though he says travelers should leave extra time to find a spot. Additionally, he advised travelers who haven't left yet to consider parking in the hourly or daily garages at the airport in case snow does fall this weekend.
4:20 P.M. UPDATE:
The potential for crowds remains through 5:30 p.m. and beyond, said Tara Hamilton, spokeswoman with the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority, which oversees Dulles and Reagan National. She noted that the busiest days were Wednesday and Thursday and the returning day of Sunday.
With forecasts predicting possible snow over the weekend, she also advised passengers coming back on Sunday to keep tabs on conditions.
"The big thing is always weather," she said. "We urge people to not only check with their airlines, but pay attention to the weather forecast where they're coming or going, because if anything tht's going to affect their flight."
3:20 P.M. UPDATE:
Delays remain at Newark and JFK airports right now. There are multiple delays at BWI Airport right now heading in all directions. At Dulles, flights are delayed to Newark, Cleveland and LaGuardia. There are also delays from Reagan National to Boston and Hartford.
Also, there's parking available at every lot at Dulles and Reagan National (even the economy lot, which has seven spots available right now).
2:03 P.M. UPDATE: Santa and Mrs. Claus are hanging out at Reagan National until 4, posing for photos with travelers.
2 P.M. UPDATE:
There are delays to both Newark and JFK airports of more than 50 minutes. If you're heading to either location or connecting through, the airports advise that you check with your airline to see if you may be affected.
Check with your airline to see if your travel plans may be affected.
1 P.M. UPDATE:
There are delays to Boston from Reagan National, Dulles and BWI Airport, so again, check with your airline before you head out (whether you're flying to Boston or anyplace else).
And the economy lot is full again at Reagan National.
12:30 P.M. UPDATE:
There's another delay out of Dulles -- a Detroit-bound departure delayed by two hours. And there's a second Boston-bound flight from Reagan National with delays.
And adding to the earlier smattering of delays from BWI Airport, there are also delayed departures to Atlanta, Little Rock and Norfolk.
12 P.M. UPDATE:
"Everything's looking good at both airports today," said Courtney Mickalonis, a spokeswoman with the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority, which oversees Dulles and Reagan National. She said no problems were reported during the morning's peak.
While the economy lot has filled up at Reagan National, there are nearly 2,800 spots available in the other garages there, she said.
She recommends that travelers who might not have flown since last Christmas check out the authority's holiday travel tips, which cover some of the changes at the airports since this time last year.
11:40 A.M. UPDATE:
There are now also delays leaving BWI Airport for Fort Lauderdale, Orlando, Indianapolis, Dallas and Detroit. Again, check with your airline before heading out.
11:15 A.M. UPDATE:
The only delayed flight departing Reagan National right now is heading to Boston, while there are no new delayed flights leaving Dulles.
Meanwhile, adding to the list of BWI Airport delays, a flight heading to Denver is also delayed. Make sure to check with your airline before leaving to see if your flight is running on time.
And due to wind, flights heading to Newark are being delayed due an average of an hour, according to the FAA. Keep that in mind if you're flying in that direction.
11:05 A.M. UPDATE:
There are four spaces open at Reagan National's economy lot right now, so if you are heading there now you might snag one of them.
10:40 A.M. UPDATE:
The earlier reported delays at Reagan National have cleared, according to the FAA. There are no delayed flights from Reagan right now, while there are no new delays at Dulles.
There are some delays for flights departing BWI Airport. Flights heading to Jackson, Miss., as well as Albany, Rochester, Hartford and Nashville, are delayed as we speak. There are also some delays for early afternoon flights to Providence, West Palm Beach, Birmingham, Tampa and St. Louis.
Meanwhile, parking lots remain open at Dulles and Reagan National (except for the economy lot).
10:10 A.M. UPDATE:
The FAA is still reporting some delays at Reagan National, while the similar delays it was reporting earlier at BWI Airport have cleared. However, except for a couple of delays (for flights to L.A. and New York), there don't appear to be problems flying out of Reagan National.
At Dulles, there are still delays for Continental flights to Newark and Cleveland as well as a delay for a Richmond-bound flight, but no other big delays. At BWI, a flight to Tampa had some delays but all other flights appear on-time.
PARKING: At Reagan National, the economy lot is full (and showing -1 available spots, which is weird). All the other lots have spaces. All lots are still open at Dulles, and we haven't heard any big problems related to BWI parking lots.
9:35 A.M. UPDATE:
The FAA is reporting delays between 16 and 30 minutes (and increasing) for planes at the gate and taxiing at Reagan National, but the airport shows no delays for departing flights right now. At Dulles, departing flights to Cleveland and Newark are delayed, with all other flights appearing to be on time.
Meanwhile, just the Reagan National economy lot has only six spots left, so if you are reading this and therefore at home (you wouldn't read this in the car, I assume), it'll probably be full by the time you get there.
8:50 A.M. UPDATE:
Looking over our area airports, we don't have big problems to report. There are no departing flight delays to report at Dulles and Reagan National airports.
At BWI Airport, two flights arriving from Boston and Charlotte were delayed. Meanwhile, JetBlue flight 1322 (scheduled to depart for Boston at 8:35 a.m.) was also delayed until 9:20 a.m. The FAA reports that there will be delays of between 16 and 30 minutes for departing flights at BWI Airport, so that might become a problem as the morning goes on.
There are no other big problems being reported throughout the east coast.
All parking lots are still open at Dulles and Reagan National, but if you're heading to DCA be aware the economy parking lot is rapidly filling up. There are just 39 spots available right now, down from more than 150 a little over an hour ago. And we've heard from a reader that the BWI cellphone lot is full.
Looking over the flight departure information at the three major area airports, I'm not seeing any major delays right now. The FAA's live flight delay map currently shows no problems for any airports in the Northeast. There are only a few minor hitches to report so far: Flights from Dulles heading to Cleveland and London were delayed, while a US Airways shuttle from Reagan National to New York's LaGuardia Airport scheduled for 7 a.m. was canceled.
If you're driving to the airport, now would appear an ideal time: All parking lots are open and have spaces at Dulles as well as Reagan National, though the economy lot at Reagan National is filling up fast (at this time, there are just over 150 spots left) and won't have spaces for much longer. Meanwhile, BWI Airport doesn't have the same online displays, so keep your eyes on their Twitter account and Web site for parking alerts.