During a news conference at Chicago O’Hare International Airport on April 3, 2024, TSA officers display prohibited carry-on items that can cause security checkpoint delays. (WTTW News)

Get to the airport early and do your research ahead of time about what you can pack, TSA officials said.

Ana Rosario of Houston, sitting left, tries to keep warm as she waits on her flight in Terminal A at Houston George Bush Intercontinental Airport Tuesday, Jan. 16, 2024, in Houston. (Melissa Phillip / Houston Chronicle via AP)

Airlines can’t control the weather, but they are still required to provide refunds for customers whose flights are canceled. Here’s what to know about your rights, and what to know when cancellations start piling up.

(WTTW News)

Thanksgiving travelers should expect to gobble up traffic over the next few days, with AAA forecasting 2.46 million vehicles to hit the roads in Illinois — some 60,000 more drivers than last year.

Sale signs are displayed at an appliance store in Arlington Heights, Ill., Nov. 8, 2023. (AP Photo / Nam Y. Huh)

Tuesday’s report from the Labor Department showed that prices either fell or rose more slowly across a broad range of goods and services, including gas, new and used cars, hotel rooms and housing. 

A rendering of "The Club MDW," a lounge for travelers that is expected to open next fall at Midway International Airport. (Courtesy of Chicago Department of Aviation)

The lounge will be accessible to travelers who buy an airport lounge membership or day pass. It is expected to open next fall. 

ook at whether airplane seats are too cramped. (Juan Silva/Photodisc / Getty Images)

U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth criticized 2019 evacuation testing, which used just 60 passengers — far fewer than in most commercial jets — and did not include senior citizens, people with mobility disabilities or carry-on luggage.

Travelers are pictured at O’Hare International Airport in a file photo. (WTTW News)

Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport was still the world’s busiest airport for passenger volume in 2022, holding the top spot it reclaimed in 2021 after being knocked off stride by the COVID-19 pandemic.

FILE - A Southwest Airlines jet passes unused luggage carts as it arrives, Dec. 28, 2022, at Sky Harbor International Airport in Phoenix. (AP Photo / Matt York, File)

Southwest canceled about 16,700 flights over the last 10 days of December. The U.S. Department of Transportation is investigating whether the airline deceived customers by knowingly scheduling more flights than it realistically could handle.

A Southwest Airlines passenger jet approaches Kansas City International Airport to land as geese fly overhead, Friday, Dec. 30, 2022, in Kansas City, Mo. A computer outage at the Federal Aviation Administration brought flights to a standstill across the U.S. on Wednesday, with hundreds of delays quickly cascading through the system at airports nationwide. (AP Photo / Charlie Riedel, File)

The Federal Aviation Administration is lifting a ground stop on flights across the U.S. following a computer outage early Wednesday that resulted in thousands of delays and hundreds of cancellations quickly cascading through the system at airports nationwide.

A Southwest Airlines ground operations crew member waits to guide an arriving jet into a gate, Wednesday, Dec. 28, 2022, at Sky Harbor International Airport in Phoenix. (AP Photo / Matt York)

Southwest Airlines returned to a relatively normal flight schedule Friday, as the focus shifts to making things right with what could be well more than a million passengers who missed family connections or flights home during the holidays, and many of whom are still missing luggage.

Ashlyn Harmon of New Orleans searches for her Southwest Airlines bags amongst hundreds of others at Midway International Airport as Southwest continues to cancel thousands of flights across the country Wednesday, Dec. 28, 2022, in Chicago. Harmon said her family’s initial Southwest flight was cancelled on Christmas so they rebooked on American Airlines, although Southwest still shipped their bags to Midway. “We rebooked ourselves,” she said. “I figure we can deal with refunds and all of that when we get bac

It is likely that far more than 1 million passengers have been affected. Southwest has canceled more than 13,000 flights since its meltdown began on Dec. 22. Its planes have 143 to 175 seats and were likely nearly fully booked around the Christmas and New Year’s holidays.

Passengers wearing masks walk through the Capital airport terminal in Beijing on Dec. 13, 2022. (AP Photo / Ng Han Guan, File)

The increase in cases across China follows the rollback of the nation’s strict anti-virus controls. China’s “zero COVID” policies had kept the country’s infection rate low but fueled public frustration and crushed economic growth.

A traveler wades through the field of unclaimed bags at the Southwest Airlines luggage carousels at Denver International Airport, Tuesday, Dec. 27, 2022, in Denver. (AP Photo / David Zalubowski)

This week, with cancellations from other major airlines ranging from none to 2%, Southwest has canceled nearly 10,000 flights as of Wednesday and warned of thousands more Thursday and Friday, according to FlightAware.

Baggage waits to be claimed after canceled flights at the Southwest Airlines terminal at Los Angeles International Airport on Monday, Dec. 26, 2022, in Los Angeles. (Eugene Garcia / AP)

Airports most affected by the Tuesday cancellations are Denver International, followed by Chicago Midway International, Baltimore/Washington International, Harry Reid International Airport in Las Vegas, Dallas Love Field and Nashville International.

More than 1,000 flights have been cancelled across the United States, according to the flight tracking site FlightAware, as severe winter weather threatens holiday travel, and pictured, Alaska Airlines planes in Seattle, Washington, on Dec. 20. (David Ryder / Bloomberg / Getty Images)

More than 1,800 flights have been canceled Thursday across the United States, according to the flight tracking site FlightAware, as severe winter weather complicates holiday travel.

Travelers walk through Terminal 3 at O'Hare International Airport in Chicago. (Nam Y. Huh / AP)

The number of travelers expected to fly – 7.2 million – is just shy of 2019’s 7.3 million. And when you factor in that airlines are operating fewer flights that are more crowded, there’s serious potential for a serious mess for air travelers. How to cope? Here are some strategies.