Travel agents see business rise as snow falls

The unusual spring snowstorm has many people longing for warmer weather.
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Travel agents are benefiting from the spring snowstorm. Potential clients are calling, wanting to reserve a warm and sunny spot for vacation this year.

"It was warm and this morning as we're packing to leave, it was 70 and sunny and perfect," said Travis Combs of his departure from Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida.

That's were Combs and his family spent the past week on spring break.

"We were wearing these when we left Indiana," said Combs, pointing to his flip flops.

The family was wearing those same flip flops as they returned to Indianapolis. Except now, Combs is looking at shoveling a driveway full of snow.

"I put grass seed down before we left, 'cause I was thinking, 'Oh, that'll be 10 days. Let it start and it will be warm by the time I get back.' No. No," said Combs, shaking his head.

Turns out, a lot of people want to be where Combs just was. Eyewitness News talked to travel agents who said their phones were ringing off the hook with people who wanted the first flight out to some place warm.

"From the time we got up at 6 o'clock in the morning, it was, 'Ding. Ding. Ding. Ding," said Robert Whorrall with Beach Bum Vacations.

Those alerts were all e-mails to Beach Bum Vacations from clients who wanted out of this spring weather.

"Some people are just saying, 'Warm and sunny, two-thousand dollars, four nights. Can you do it,'" said Whorrall. "For someone just to say, 'Two-thousand dollars, warm and sunny for four nights.' That's desperate," Whorrall added.

Whorrall would rather see sunshine outside his office window. Instead, he's looking at more than eight inches of snow.

Still, that snow means Whorrall is looking at more business.

"I think people just want to get out of Dodge-type thing," explained Whorrall.

"When snow comes, everybody wants to leave Indianapolis," said Caldwell Travel Agency's owner Mary Caldwell.

Just like Whorrall's clients, Caldwell Travel's clients have the same requests.

"They want to go right away," explained Caldwell.

It's not always that easy.

"Expensive," said Caldwell. "Most of the flights are full. So for you to take a vacation now in the next three to four days to leave, you have to be willing to pay a good price."

Now, Combs and his family are paying a different price after their week in Walt Disney World, the price for listening to the wrong forecaster.

"I thought that hedgehog said we were...that we were clear of this," complained Combs.