There was "snow way" for Mary Hale to get out of the Midwest Friday.
Hale and a group of four others were trying to travel from Green Bay to Tampa Bay, but a winter storm grounded their flight and left them with few options.
"Couldn't get one out of Green Bay. Couldn't get one out of Appleton," Hale told NBC 5.
That's when the group heard they could fly out of Chicago, if they could make it through treacherous driving conditions and arrive in time for the flight.
They furiously hailed a cab in hopes of catching their flight out to warmer weather, but quickly learned this option was going to cost them.
"A little nerve wracking trying to get here in time," she said.
As of Friday afternoon, Hale's flight was expected to depart from Chicago, despite more than 1,000 flights being canceled at area airports.
By 2:30 p.m., 990 flights were canceled at O'Hare Airport and another 315 were canceled at Midway Airport, officials said.
Southwest Airlines preemptively canceled nearly 350 flights at Midway Thursday morning.
The CDA said in a statement Thursday that it prepared "a robust snow removal effort with our airline partners as well as the FAA. Our top goal is to keep our runways safe and dry, and to minimize the impact of weather conditions on operations at O'Hare and Midway International Airports.
It also encouraged travelers to "contact the airlines on flight status ahead of time, and to arrive early before their scheduled flights." To accommodate customers, several airlines were waiving change fees for flights in and out of the city and across the Midwest.