Hurricane Dorian dampens Labor Day travel in Florida: What you need to know

Hurricane Dorian sideswiped Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, and now swirls over the Atlantic, picking up steam and setting course for the mainland U.S. Nadia Romero has the latest.

Posted: Aug 29, 2019 5:00 PM
Updated: Aug 29, 2019 5:00 PM

Vacationers headed to Florida for the Labor Day holiday and the unofficial close of summer are in for a nerve-racking weekend.

Hurricane Dorian is expected to strengthen to a powerful Category 4 storm by Sunday and is likely to make landfall along the Florida or Georgia coasts on Monday after rolling through the northern Bahamas over the weekend.

Getting out of the storm's path will be tricky, as its path is still unpredictable with four days to meander over very warm water.

Flights

American Airlines has issued a list of Florida destinations that may be affected by the storm. Full details of itineraries that qualify are listed on the airline's web site.

The advisory follows several previous waivers issued by American Airlines for destinations in the Caribbean.

Delta Air Lines put out an advisory Thursday for cities in Florida and Georgia, following previous waiver options for Caribbean destinations.

Southwest, JetBlue, Spirit, United and Frontier have also offered waivers on change fees for itineraries involving specific destinations in the Caribbean and Florida.

As of midday Thursday, airlines had canceled more than 80 flights scheduled for Thursday and Friday, according to flight tracking site FlightAware.com.

"These are relatively small numbers, so we would not be surprised if cancellations increased closer to Monday morning as Dorian makes landfall on the east coast of Florida. We would expect flights to and from Orlando, Miami, and other airports in that area to be most affected," FlightAware said in a statement.

Cruises

Royal Caribbean cruise line's private Bahamian island, Perfect Day at CocoCay, will be closed through September 4 so that local employees can secure and evacuate their families and homes, the company said on its web site. Six itineraries had been adjusted by Thursday morning to accommodate the island's closure.

Guests that pre-purchased Royal Caribbean shore excursions for CocoCay will receive refunds credited to their onboard accounts.

On its website, Carnival Cruise Line listed a series of sailings it is monitoring and modifying out of Port Canaveral, Port of Miami, Jacksonville, Fort Lauderdale and Tampa in Florida as well as sailings out of Charleston, South Carolina.

The cruise line's online advisory outlines how passengers aboard specific sailings can sign up for text alerts for more information.

Disney Cruise Line posted an advisory about several sailings on its website.

The company said that Disney Dream will set sail as scheduled on Friday, keeping a safe distance from the storm. The itinerary may be modified, depending on the storm's path.

Disney Dream guests must call 866-325-3905 or 407-566-7032 by noon ET on Friday if they don't want to sail. They will have until October 31 to choose a new date. There's no fee to change reservations for this sailing, but there may be a price difference depending on the new trip.

The cruise line's August 31 Disney Fantasy sailing is expected to proceed as planned. The company is monitoring Disney Dream's scheduled September 2 sailing.

Amusement parks and other attractions

In Orlando, about 50 miles inland from Florida's Atlantic coast, Walt Disney World Resort opened its much-anticipated Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge land in Hollywood Studios on Thursday.

While Dorian's impact on the inland city packed with theme parks may not be as severe as in coastal communities, Galaxy's Edge faces a potentially soggy opening weekend and scores of disappointed fans who may opt to reschedule their visits.

Universal Orlando Resort is monitoring the situation. "At this time our park operations and hours are continuing as normal. We have plans and procedures for serious weather that are time-proven and we will continue to make operating decisions as we learn more," the company said in a statement.

Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex, one of Central Florida's most popular tourist destinations, expects to be closed Sunday and Monday because of the storm. The center is moving its Mobile Launch Platform inside, officials announced Thursday.

Change of plans

Some travelers are proactively canceling Florida plans.

Lindsay Wolf and her husband had planned to take their children, ages 8 and 10, kayaking and tubing on the Rainbow River with friends who had recently moved to the Ocala area, but the Atlanta family has made other plans.

"It was an easy decision to make to cancel the trip considering how large of an area the meteorologists are expecting the storm to make landfall," Wolf said.

She knew the rain would ruin their time in the sun, and the roads would be filled with evacuees heading north.

Luckily for her family, she found a hotel with an available room in Orange Beach, Alabama, "so we will still get sun and water," she said. "Plus, we will get out of there before any of the rain makes it there."

"The kids will understand one day, but last night our son didn't eat dinner and both kids cried their little eyes out."

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 697182

Reported Deaths: 8169
CountyCasesDeaths
Hennepin1427711862
Ramsey59431953
Dakota53075503
Anoka48987486
Washington31228315
Stearns25428242
St. Louis20900339
Scott20039146
Wright18954165
Olmsted16269112
Sherburne13840106
Carver1237052
Clay936897
Rice9278125
Blue Earth888747
Crow Wing8070102
Kandiyohi753292
Chisago733858
Otter Tail689897
Benton6653102
Mower576238
Winona564852
Goodhue560581
Douglas549484
Beltrami534672
Itasca532572
Steele520221
McLeod519665
Isanti500470
Morrison478263
Nobles455650
Becker455060
Polk444575
Freeborn438142
Lyon402454
Carlton399160
Nicollet387848
Pine384026
Mille Lacs363860
Brown358244
Cass355536
Le Sueur348230
Todd333034
Meeker314049
Waseca297626
Martin271633
Wabasha25005
Dodge24865
Hubbard241941
Roseau238224
Houston211217
Redwood206642
Fillmore204510
Renville204248
Pennington196022
Wadena192927
Faribault184925
Sibley180310
Cottonwood179424
Chippewa173439
Kanabec168329
Aitkin159239
Watonwan157211
Rock142919
Jackson136112
Pope13378
Yellow Medicine128720
Pipestone126126
Koochiching125119
Swift120319
Murray117610
Stevens110011
Clearwater109218
Marshall107619
Lake94321
Wilkin91014
Lac qui Parle89424
Mahnomen7339
Big Stone7024
Grant6938
Norman6829
Lincoln6724
Kittson54222
Unassigned52893
Red Lake5067
Traverse4375
Lake of the Woods4204
Cook2150

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 443535

Reported Deaths: 6420
CountyCasesDeaths
Polk69441683
Linn26618363
Scott23312265
Black Hawk19397338
Woodbury17483233
Johnson1698692
Dubuque14775221
Pottawattamie13369186
Dallas13048102
Story1211448
Warren707893
Webster6479103
Cerro Gordo6370105
Clinton635898
Des Moines618084
Muscatine5985109
Marshall586981
Sioux547676
Jasper532076
Lee529084
Wapello5230128
Unassigned50150
Buena Vista479442
Marion464086
Plymouth442185
Henry351341
Jones341159
Bremer331365
Washington330454
Crawford326844
Carroll326553
Benton325756
Boone318636
Mahaska282754
Dickinson276547
Kossuth257471
Clay255629
Jackson253844
Tama246073
Hardin244547
Buchanan244238
Delaware240143
Cedar228025
Fayette227945
Page225724
Wright221741
Winneshiek219237
Hamilton216752
Harrison205476
Madison199920
Clayton199758
Floyd195742
Butler191936
Poweshiek188837
Mills188225
Iowa185927
Cherokee184740
Allamakee181152
Jefferson178238
Lyon178041
Calhoun172213
Hancock170336
Winnebago170131
Cass164356
Louisa161651
Grundy161335
Appanoose158149
Shelby156539
Emmet153241
Franklin152224
Humboldt151626
Union149937
Sac147922
Mitchell146143
Guthrie142132
Chickasaw141618
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Keokuk121332
Monroe118733
Howard118422
Ida109838
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Greene103012
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Monona99034
Lucas98523
Adair97734
Worth9558
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