AccuWeather: Winter storms expected to hit Midwest the day before Thanksgiving

Even without bad weather, there's "nothing worse than Wednesday," says AAA on the busiest travel time of the year.

Digital Content Producer
November 22, 2019 - 9:27 am
Thanksgiving 2019 weather



ST. LOUIS (KFTK) - The busiest travel days of the year – the weekend before Thanksgiving through the weekend after – is expected to be threatened with at least three storms of note that can cause travel delays. This includes a potential for heavy snow and winterlike travel conditions with substantial delays in St. Louis and Midwest, according to

More than 55 million travelers have plans to venture at least 50 miles away from home from the Friday before Thanksgiving to the Sunday after Thanksgiving, according to the American Automobile Association (AAA). The holiday travel volume is expected to be second-highest behind 2005 since tracking began in 2000, AAA said.

Related: See which stores will likely be open on Thanksgiving for holiday shopping

An active storm track is forecast to bring a wintry mix this weekend to the Midwest and Northeast, prior to a more significant and potentially very disruptive storm for the central U.S. during the peak of the Thanksgiving travel time.

Rain and a couple of thunderstorms are likely to extend from parts of the Midwest to the entire East Coast this weekend, which can lead to airline delays at some of the major hubs from Atlanta to Cincinnati, Pittsburgh, Washington, D.C., Philadelphia and eventually New York City and Boston. 

In terms of Thanksgiving travel, in lieu of any bad weather, there's "nothing worse than Wednesday," the AAA said in its statement. Trips made on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving can be four times longer as commuters mix with holiday travelers, according to AAA.

There is the potential for heavy snow and winterlike travel conditions with substantial delays for a 1,200-mile stretch of the heartland. Wintry weather could spread from eastern Colorado and northeastern New Mexico to parts of Wisconsin, Minnesota, Missouri and Michigan as Thanksgiving travel surges next Wednesday.

Should the storm develop to its maximum intensity, blizzard conditions may unfold over part of the Upper Midwest with strong winds and low visibility.

So, not only may there be normal heavy holiday traffic on the roads and at the airports, a storm may really throw a wrench into plans during the day and night before Thanksgiving over the Central and Eastern states.

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