As airports gear up to handle what’s expected to be the busiest travel season in history, a surge of flyers means security wait times turn into a traveler’s worst nightmare–but the Thanksgiving week forecast is also gearing up to wreak havoc on holiday travel.
According to the National Weather Service Prediction Center, a “low pressure system currently developing over the mid-section of the country will send a wave of inclement weather through the eastern two-thirds of the country through the next couple of days.”
AccuWeather meteorologists are also predicting the same, stating that, along with the turkey, stuffing, and mashed potatoes, “rain, snow and gusty winds will be served up for Thanksgiving travel.”
The forecast starts out with a significant bout of inclement weather from eastern Texas to the lower Mississippi Valley with severe thunderstorms, some of which could contain winds and tornadoes, together with heavy downpours, hail, and the threat of flash flooding.
By Tuesday, November 21st, the inclement weather is expected to bring widespread rain to the lower Great Lakes along with thunderstorms spreading from the Midwest to the lower Great Lakes and Ohio Valley, and quickly toward New England Tuesday night.
Meanwhile, temperatures will probably be cold enough for wet snow to fall over the upper Midwest early on Tuesday and over New England by Tuesday night.
As for the Mid-Atlantic, temperatures will remain below average.
55.4 million Americans are expected to travel for Thanksgiving this year, venturing at least 50 miles from home according to AAA. Because of this astronomical number, and paired with the week’s forecast, AccuWeather urges those who need to travel to do so earlier in the week, if possible.
AccuWeather Meteorologist Alyssa Glenny stated:
Ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday, a soaking storm can track from the central U.S. toward the East, complicating travel plans. However, conditions across the Northeast early in the week will be on the calmer side by comparison.
As for New York City specifically, increasing cloudiness and periods of rain are forecasted to move Tuesday into Wednesday before opening up to mostly sunny skies on Thanksgiving, Thursday, November 23rd.
Governor Kathy Hochul, however, is still urging caution for Thanksgiving travelers, stating:
We are preparing for the worst case scenario and warning motorists and homeowners and people now who will be traveling locally and outside the region to alter your travel plans now. Do not make next Wednesday be your main day to travel or else you’ll get stuck. You’ll be either stuck at home not able to travel, or worst case there, you could be stuck on one of the roads or the New York State Thruway.