The worst travel day of the year

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In the U.S., the day before Thanksgiving is the worst day of the year to travel by plane. Airport parking lots fill up, security lines back up, and if a flight is overbooked or canceled, well, better start cooking that turkey yourself, because with little slack in the system, you likely wonâ''t be going anywhere.

And, as far as days before Thanksgiving go, tomorrow is shaping up to be one of the more dismal ones for air travelers. The Air Transport Association, an organization that represents commercial aviation companies, warned today that a storm front in the Northeast will cause problems tomorrow, and today, rain and fog in New York, Philadelphia, and Chicago, along with a communications glitch in Dallas (the latest in a string of communications problems), have already stressed the system.

If youâ''re traveling, you might check the ATA for the latest bulletins about delays and airport closures. If youâ''re not traveling, and want to watch the air transportation system struggle with the challenges of tomorrow, check out the FAAâ''s live flight delay map. Make a game of it, look at the latest weather satellite photo, and try to predict the next airport to go red, that is, start holding planes at the gate or on the runway for more than 45 minutes before departure. You can also watch planes waiting to land stack up at major airports here.

Iâ''m so glad Iâ''m staying home this year.

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