CHARLOTTE — The East Coast blizzard is having a ripple effect into the Carolinas, causing a growing number of flight cancellations and also altering schedules on bus and train routes.
Most morning flights are still scheduled to Mid-Atlantic and New England destinations from Charlotte-Douglas International Airport, but travel to about 10 cities likely will end by midday.
At last count, nearly 40 arrivals and departures in and out of Charlotte are canceled. Another 25 flights in and out of Raleigh-Durham International Airport also are scrubbed.
The worst of the snow and winds are expected to begin around noon in New York City and a short time later in Boston.
These flight destinations are being affected by the storm:
-- New York
-- Westchester (N.Y.)
In addition, these destinations might be impacted later in the day:
Operations seemed normal early Friday morning at Charlottes airport, with only a few cancellations. Several travelers said they successfully rebooked themselves on earlier flights, so they could reach the Northeast before the snow.
It meant I had to spend the night here at the airport, but it also means Ill get on a morning flight to New York, said Bob Grinnell, who changed his schedule so he could fly to Charlotte from Fort Lauderdale on Thursday evening, then board a morning flight to LaGuardia. I think its going to be a mess.
A young couple sitting near Grinnell said they had done the same thing, catching a flight from St. Louis to Charlotte on Thursday evening, so they could fly Friday morning to Boston.
But not everyone was so lucky.
Marie Cavanaughs flight to Charlotte was delayed Thursday evening, and she missed a connecting flight home to Providence.
It doesnt look like Ill be able to fly on Friday, Cavanaugh said. It could be Sunday before I can get home.
At 9:30 a.m., the flight schedule showed only five flight cancellations before noon -- two departures to New York Citys LaGuardia Airport, and one to Toronto; and one arrival each from Toronto and New Yorks JFK Airport.
But between noon and 5 p.m., the schedule showed 32 cancellations -- to LaGuardia and JFK airports in New York; Boston; Newark; Hartford; Providence; Westchester; Albany and Toronto.
One bit of good news for travelers -- many airlines are waiving the fees for passengers who change their flight schedules. Travelers should check airline websites for details.
Greyhound says it has suspended service on six routes already -- New York-Boston; New York-Montreal; New York-Toronto; Boston-Montreal; Boston-Bangor (Maine); and Boston-Albany.
Additional route cancellations are possible later Friday, depending on where the heaviest snow falls.
Service out of Charlotte is not affected by the winter storm, but anyone planning to travel north of Washington will feel the impact.
As of 9:30 a.m. Friday, Amtrak said these changes were planned:
-- Boston southbound service ends at 1:40 p.m. Friday
-- New York northbound service ends at 1 p.m.
-- Springfield (Mass.) shuttle ends at 10:30 a.m.
-- Vermonter connecting service has ended
-- Downeaster service (to Maine) has ended