Recently a friend had to take a business trip to Minneapolis, but couldn’t get there because the weather had grounded all incoming flights. They ended up going the next day, and arrived barely on time. This has, of course, happened to all of us.
The worst case scenario is being in a foreign country and being unable to get out when something bad is happening. As an example, some time ago we were stuck in Teheran and, what with one thing and another, needed to leave quickly and unobtrusively, which precluded flying.
The next best choice was to take a train. We waited three days, which seemed like a very long time since at the time we were suffering from cholera. Finally, we gave up on the train and took a bus across the border into Turkey.
The point of this (other than not to drink the water or eat fresh vegetables in certain countries) is that it is always important to have alternate travel options. In the case on not being able to fly to Minneapolis, another possibility might have been to fly to Chicago and take a train. Of course, if Chicago were also closed down that wouldn’t have worked, and driving might have been the appropriate choice, depending on the level of urgency.
In the U.S., we are familiar with the alternatives. But what about when you travel abroad? What happens in the case of earthquake, or civil disorder? If you are high enough up the corporate food chain to have an executive protection team, they should have pre-planned for a variety of emergencies. If you are traveling on your own, you need to think of worst-case scenarios and make appropriate backup plans.