If you’re stuck in the Windy City on account of the predicted 18” of snow (or if you’re avoiding being stuck somewhere not as cozy as a hotel), the Chicago-area Kimpton properties, the Hotel Allegro, Hotel Burnham, Hotel Monaco, and Hotel Palomar just announced a $99 “Stranded in the City” rate that is in effect from Tuesday through Friday. Just use the booking code 'COLD' when you’re booking a room online or over the phone.
No matter how miserable your shoveling chores were this morning, I bet you wouldn't trade places with a stranded traveler in a snowstorm. Flight delays typically mean another day or five stuck in a strange city without an itinerary.
—That is, unless John Boris can help it.
Over the past year, when severe weather or natural disaster has trapped tourists at the airports, Lonely Planet Americas’s executive vice president and managing director has been making his popular city-guide apps (iPhone, iPod; iPad) completely FREE for download at iTunes for 72 hours. (Normally, they sell for as much as $5.99!)
Here's hoping you got home before Sunday night, when the season's first blizzard blanketed the northeast under several feet of snow. AOL Travel has several stories of stranded passengers and snarled airports:
Some air passengers endured nightmare delays as a blizzard dropped up to 18 inches of snow on the Northeast and travelers tried to get home from the Christmas holiday break.
Airports shut down in Washington, Philadelphia and New York. But there were storm-caused delays and canceled flights elsewhere too as carriers moved planes around to avoid the storm.
As of 2pm, the National Weather Service had issued a hurricane watch for the North Carolina coast. The state is currently evacuating visitors from Hatteras Island and the rest of the Outer Banks.
Virginia and the Eastern Shore of Maryland and Delaware, and the Jersey Shore (batten down the Situation!) are all under hurricane warnings, and small craft advisories extend into New England, and all the way south to the Florida Keys.
USA Today | Federal forecasters Thursday called for an "active" to "extremely active" hurricane season this year. They predict anywhere from 14 to 23 named storms to form in the Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico.
Of those named storms, eight to 14 should become hurricanes, including three to seven "major" hurricanes with wind speeds above 111 mph.
This prediction is the highest of any that federal forecasters have made since they began issuing seasonal hurricane forecasts in 1998.
The Sun Sentinel | They are nature's most powerful storms, able to wrench off roofs, blow out windows, rip down trees and otherwise ravage a large metropolitan area.
Major hurricanes—Categories 3, 4 and 5—produce sustained winds from 110 mph to as much as 185 mph and can generate storm surges more than 20 feet above normal tide levels.
With the 2010 Atlantic hurricane season starting today, experts say there is a significant chance one or more of these monsters will strike the U.S. coast over the next six months. The reason: It could be an extremely active year with up to 14 hurricanes, seven major, forecasters said.
"In general, more active seasons have more landfalling hurricanes.Therefore, the odds of a major hurricane making U.S. landfall increases," said Phil Klotzbach, the Colorado State University climatologist who develops seasonal outlooks with William Gray.
CNN | University forecasters predict the 2010 Atlantic hurricane season will be above average, with 15 named storms and eight of those becoming hurricanes.
The Colorado State University report was released Wednesday, nearly two months before the beginning of the Atlantic hurricane season on June 1.
In the report, forecasters William Gray and Phil Klotzbach said that El Niño conditions will dissipate by summer and that unusually warm tropical Atlantic sea surface temperatures will persist, leading to favorable conditions for hurricanes to develop and intensify.
eTurbo News | Hong Kong’s gleaming glass and steel skyscrapers and its verdant Peak disappeared into a cloud of smog and dust as a sandstorm blowing from northern China brought record levels of pollution to the territory.
One side of Hong Kong harbour was barely visible from the other as the Government was criticised for failing to warn residents that the cloud of noxious air was bearing down on the city.
Residents awoke on Monday to a pall of choking murk, borne by easterly winds along the coast, that caused already high pollution readings to jump six-fold to a record high.
With spring on the horizon but record-breaking cold temperatures still ravaging parts of the country, everyone—especially travelers caught by a surprise storm or frigid temps—is doing what they can to stay warm.
While most people temper the bitter chill by adding multiple layers to their outerwear—that seems reasonable, no?—for some, that is apparently not enough. Enter iTunes App Store.
I know what you're thinking. How can an iPhone app possibly help keep me warm? Mashablereviewed an app that claims to be able to turn your phone into a hand-warming device. How does "Pocket Heater" work?
The app works by stressing the iPhone's processor, battery and other functions to cause the device to overheat and hence become warm to the touch. In theory, this stressing shouldn't cause any damage to the device or yourself, but this is still something we'd classify as "no warranty, use at your own peril."