Travel Q&A re: Boston bombing

Today SFO>Boston flights unaffected by bombs (Photo: Barkley Dean)

Today SFO>Boston flights unaffected by bombs (Photo: Barkley Dean)

What’s the situation at local Bay Area airports?

At 4 pm today, my contacts at the airports as well as readers surprised me with NO reports of longer lines, increased scrutiny, etc. Boston had a brief “ground stop” which lasted only about an hour, and apparently operations are back to normal there and elsewhere… FAA airport delay map shows green dots only across the country.

How early people should arrive at the airport?

As always, people should arrive 1-2 hours early– However, if delays increase at airport security due to more intense scrutiny, this is a great time to utilize what I call the “No hassle travel trifecta” 

What you should do if you’re traveling to Boston this week? 

Some Boston hotels are already offering no-questions-asked refunds. If you have a reservation downtown near site of bombing, I would cancel and ask for refund. If you are stuck with a non-refundable hotel reservation from a third party site (like Expedia, Travelocity, Hotwire), I would call the online agency and ask to be moved to another nearby hotel at the same rate. Virgin America is waiving change fees for those traveling to/from Boston April 15-17.

Will airport security become more strict in coming days? 

No sign yet of increased airport security or more intense scrutiny of passengers. I’m monitoring this now. If you have noticed more intense scrutiny at security checkpoints, please leave your comments below. Best news is that we are currently in a relatively slow travel season… spring break has just concluded, so airports are relatively uncrowded and quiet. Expect to see a very visible police presence in most major downtown areas and famous, popular sites, as well as airports.

NOTE: The situation is still very fluid and subject to change.


Chris McGinnis


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