Milwaukee flights canceled due to weather, rental cars hard to come by

Dan Smith

The deep cold that covers most of the country is a headache for travel. On Monday, December 26, some flights to and from Milwaukee Mitchell International Airport were cancelled.

According to FlightAware, more than 17,000 flights have been canceled nationwide since Wednesday, Dec. 21 due to winter storms.

At Milwaukee's airport on Monday, people hoping to drive instead had trouble finding rental cars.

FOX6 was frustrated at the airport the day after Christmas when people were in trouble with flights, rental cars and lost luggage.

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"It's really just a scam," said Elaine Lathen of Milwaukee.

Lathen is one of many times stuck at the airport.

"It's heartbreaking and exhausting to keep getting these cancellations, cancellations, cancellations," Lathen said.

Thousands received the same notification. FOX6 found long lines of people trying to rebook at check-in counters.

Southwest Airlines customers have felt most of the travel nightmare. Airlines canceled thousands of flights over Christmas, canceling more than 20% of his scheduled flights on Monday.

Due to flight issues, travelers were considering other options.

“We plan to drive,” said Gail Northway of Waukesha County.

Northway wanted to go from Milwaukee to Florida for a family vacation.

"So my husband and son are in line to buy a rental car," Northway said.

It was also a difficult process.

Milwaukee Airport's two car rental companies, Hertz and Avis, no longer have walk-in car rentals.

“We didn't have to wait an hour,” says Daniel Boch. "We were lucky."

Bock and his wife were heading back to Denver.

"Fourteen hours by car," said Boch.

FOX6 also found hundreds of checked bags in baggage claim. A few people said they waited several days for their packages to be found.

"I spent most of my vacation... I'm sorry... just trying to get from one point to another and I'm disappointed," Lathen said.