This week: America’s deep freeze, Dubai challenges Heathrow & more

This week showed us that winter really is in full swing in the Northern hemisphere and it showed us some competitive muscling between two large airports. Here’s the full list of what we’re going to cover:

The Northern hemisphere winter was showing its full force this week – particularly in the United States where first on Monday, Chicago’s O’Hare Airport (ORD) reported more then 265 flight cancellations. NBC Chicago wrote that other airports such as Chicago Midway International Airport (MDW) also experienced long delays.

Then on Thursday the cold snap hit the country further South when Business Insider reported that a few inches of snow and freezing temperatures have created chaos in Atlanta, as terrible traffic has led people to abandon their cars, deliver a baby on the side of the highway, and seek shelter in local stores. The problems extended to Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport (ATL), the busiest in the world when inbound flights were delayed by an average of 6 hours 22 minutes.

An entirely different story reached us from the Middle East this week when Al Arabiya News headlined an increasing rivalry between Dubai and Heathrow: Passenger traffic at Dubai International Airport (DXB) exceeded that of Paris’s Charles de Gaulle (CDG) and Frankfurt Airport (FRA) in 2013, and is shortly expected to surpass London’s Heathrow (LHR) to become the world’s busiest airport (for international traffic, LateDeparture remark). With Heathrow’s capacity constraints and its political challenge for expansion, we at LateDeparture think this battle is going to be one-sided.

Remember that 100-year-old teddy which was found abandoned at Bristol airport (BRS) in 2012? Well, the story continued this week with the Telegraph revealing the mystery has finally been solved: After public appeal launched last summer, the bear’s owner Robert Glyn Baker has come forward. Mr Baker was sent a copy of the article and recognised the teddy as a family heirloom he had lost while travelling through the airport on his way to Cyprus. He said: “I was stunned when I got a cutting of the Mature Times in the post and saw my bear on the front page. “I thought it was lost forever, I was convinced it had been destroyed.”

And to finish the week a bit of gossip for you from L.A.: There, according to the Independent, Thomas Bangalter and Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo – better known as Daft Punk – were spotted going through security at Los Angeles’ LAX airport minus their robotic disguises. You can check out their photo here.

That’s all for this week – safe travels!

[Photo from Business Insider]