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Holiday travel off to a rough start

  • Story Highlights
  • Cloud cover delays flights at JFK Airport in New York, O'Hare in Chicago
  • Technical glitch at Dallas-Fort Worth airport delays incoming flights
  • Winds, low clouds cause delays at other major U.S. airports
  • Americans traveling via highways will be paying more for gasoline
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ATLANTA, Georgia (CNN) -- Bad weather and an airport technical problem stalled Thanksgiving holiday travel on Monday -- and conditions are likely to worsen as Turkey Day nears.

At Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport, incoming and outgoing flights were halted when two control towers lost radio communications. The delays at the Texas airport consequently delayed flights in other cities across the country.

By midday, only incoming flights were delayed.

Weather was the culprit at other major airports, the Federal Aviation Administration said.

In Georgia, Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport saw flights delayed up to an hour due to heavy fog. Bob Hope Airport in Burbank, California, also was shut down temporarily because of fog.

In the Northeast, high winds caused delays at Newark International Airport in New Jersey and LaGuardia Airport in New York.

Heavy cloud cover was blamed for delays at O'Hare International Airport in Chicago, Illinois; Philadelphia International Airport in Pennsylvania; and at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York.

Runway maintenance stalled departures at San Francisco International Airport in California.

In Colorado, heavy snow was expected Tuesday and Wednesday. Forecasters said the snow could bring traffic and travel problems.

The same weather system could worsen travel conditions in Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska, Iowa, Missouri and the Texas panhandle.

Farther out West, Oregon and Washington state also were bracing for heavy snowfall.

The Transportation Security Administration on Monday launched a holiday travel public awareness effort. Called SimpliFLY, the program includes a one-minute video that shows travelers how to "pack smart to get through security faster," the TSA said.

"Our goal is to get passengers through the checkpoint as quickly as possible while maintaining aviation security. The public can partner with us to accomplish this by coming prepared," said TSA Administrator Kip Hawley. Video Watch some tips from the TSA »

I-Reporter Linda Jenkins of Alpharetta, Georgia, had her own tips to pass along.

"The best time to travel during the holidays is on the eve or the day of the actual holiday," she wrote. "You will miss the hordes going to visit their families several days before the holiday."

Another I-Reporter, Virginia Graeber of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, advised travelers to pack some patience.

"Take along an iPod, play some holiday music, bring something to nibble on," Graeber wrote. Video Watch how 2007 has been the worst year ever for flight delays »

Graeber planned to take a plane, a train and a shuttle to visit her 76-year-old grandmother on Thanksgiving.

"She has been such an important part of my life," Graeber wrote. "And she makes the most incredible chocolate chip cookies. I cannot wait to be home for the holidays."

Meanwhile, Americans hitting the road will be forking over more money to fill their vehicles' gas tanks.

The price of gasoline jumped another 13 cents in the last two weeks, according to a survey published Sunday.

The average price of a gallon of self-serve regular is $3.09, the Lundberg Survey found.

The travel organization AAA estimates that 38.7 million Americans nationwide will take a trip 50 miles or more from home this Thanksgiving. That represents a 1.5 percent increase over last year.

One person who won't be traveling is Holly Cresswell of Denver, Colorado.


"I am not traveling home this year to Michigan because the cost of airline tickets is absolutely ridiculous," I-Reporter Cresswell wrote.

"I am not flying 1,400 miles so that I can sit at the kids table at the age of 29 like I did last year!" E-mail to a friend E-mail to a friend

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