Commuters walk during a snowstorm in downtown Chicago on Tuesday. (Kiichiro Sato/The Associated Press)

The snowstorm heading for Washington (dubbed — sigh — the “Snowquester“) is expected to create major headaches on the region’s roads, sidewalks and transit systems.

Even with the snow still hours away, the impact is being felt by air travelers. More than 250 flights scheduled to travel through Reagan National, Dulles International and Baltimore-Washington International Marshall airports Wednesday have been canceled, according to FlightStats.

The storm is also snarling travel elsewhere in the country. In Chicago, where nearly a foot of snow is expected, FlightStats reports that hundreds of flights to or from O’Hare International and Midway International airports have been canceled.

With severe weather expected in Washington, Philadelphia and New York on Wednesday, it’s likely that travelers throughout the Northeast may encounter additional headaches.

Airlines began issuing winter travel waivers, which often waive fees or fare differences. Of course, these policies vary from airline to airline. JetBlue’s policy, covering the three Washington area airports and the Richmond airport, lets travelers rebook trips from Tuesday through Saturday. United Airlines drops fare differences and change fees for travel rescheduled by March 11. Southwest, US Airways and American Airlines also issued similar waivers.

As always, check with your airline to see if your trip will be affected.