HAGERSTOWN, Md. (WDVM)– On Wednesday Dorian was upgraded to a hurricane, and as the storm travels, it could impact travel plans and vacations.
“Unfortunately it looks like it’s coming at a time where most people probably want to go to the beach for the labor day weekend,” Meteorologist Scott Sumner said.
Meteorologists predict Dorian will continue to strengthen after passing over Puerto Rico and could hit Florida late Sunday or early Monday.
“As it gets closer towards the Florida coastline, it increases its intensity and could become a major hurricane with 115 miles per hour winds,” said Sumner. “Dorian is in the Atlantic and is probably going to be wreaking some havoc across the islands that don’t really need it.”
These islands have already been hit hard over the last few years especially from hurricane Maria and will likely see more storm damage.
While everyone should plan and prepare accordingly, travel agencies say those with vacations scheduled are likely to be accommodated. Travel insurance is also strongly recommended, especially during hurricane season.
Cruise ships are changing ports to steer away from any port affected by the hurricane and hotels are being cooperative with rescheduling.
“The Royal Caribbean is not going to San Juan and another ship is not going to Saint Martin,” according to Stull.
Cocoa Cay, Royal Carribean’s private island, will be closed starting Thursday until the hurricane is over.
Travel agencies also said airlines are offering waivers.
“They are allowing you to change your flight and in some cases cancel your flights without a penalty for certain days they believe will be impacted by the storm,” said Belinda Stull, owner of Travel Leaders.
Stull added that it is typical for airlines to accommodate during hurricane season, however the hold times to reach someone can be lengthy, but if you do have a travel agent, they have codes for this and can assist their clients much easier.