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Hurricane Arthur: Airlines relax change fees, Boston moves up concert

Hurricane Arthur: Airlines relax change fees, Boston moves up concert
Children celebrate the Fourth of July early on Thursday at the Esplanade in Boston. The annual Boston Pops Fourth of July concert was moved up a day because of potential heavy rain ahead of Hurricane Arthur. (Michael Dwyer / Associated Press)

Hurricane Arthur is already affecting Northeast travel plans, even though the storm remains off the coast of North Carolina where evacuations of the Outer Banks have been ordered for fear of big winds, rain and flooding.

Boston has moved up the city's traditional Fourth of July concert and fireworks by a day in anticipation of bad weather. The Boston Pops Orchestra with guests the Beach Boys will perform tonight instead of Friday, leaving the city without any official celebrations on the Fourth.

Airlines are offering travelers more flexibility in changing their tickets for cities likely to be affected by Arthur, a nightmarish scenario on the busy July 4 weekend.

United is waiving change fees for fliers traveling today or Friday to cities from Asheville, N.C., to New York City. American at the moment is waiving fees for Friday fliers  for cities in North Carolina and Virginia only.

If you're flying to the East Coast for the holiday weekend, check in with your airline, particularly on its Twitter and Facebook sites.

Arthur isn't expected to make landfall on North Carolina's coast, but it's close enough to cause surges of up to 5 feet, media reports say. Accuweather.com says it's forecast to become a Category 2 hurricane with wind speeds of 96 to 110 mph.

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