Friday, May 25, 2012

Air Travel Tip

Happy Memorial Day weekend! 

Memorial Day weekend is often considered the start of summer travel - which means more people on the road and more crowds at the airport. 

Here's a quick air travel tip that the hubby and I learned back in December and were forced able to use this past weekend.

Unfortunately, flights can be delayed or cancelled at a moments notice.  And as anyone who has been delayed or had a flight cancelled, it sucks!

In our case last December, we were on our flight, had taxied all the way to the runway when the pilot announced there was something wrong with the plane and we had to go back to the gate.  Our flight was cancelled and all 250 of us passengers had to deplane and then wait in line to rebook our flight. 

But instead of waiting in line, I decided to call the airline directly from my cell phone and in minutes was booked on the next flight out.  We missed our connecting flight, of course, but our delays could have been a lot worse if we didn't make it on that next flight out.

This past weekend, the hubby had to fly across the country to New Jersey for work.  Unfortunately, he had to make a connecting flight in San Francisco.  (That is actually tip #2:  avoid flying to San Francisco (SFO) at all times.  San Jose or Oakland are much better options.)  Long story short, after his flight touched down in San Francisco, he got stuck waiting for a gate the plane could park at for nearly 2 hours. Yes, he missed his connecting flight.  And he missed the next flight to Newark as well.  He and all the irate passengers were asked to deplane and see the ticket agent.  When he finally made it to the terminal, apparently the airport was a madhouse because his flight wasn't the only one that had been delayed.

So while he waited in line, I looked online for the next best option to get him to New Jersey, called the airline myself and re-booked him. I told the representative the exact flight number I wanted him changed to so that he didn't have to go looking for it, taking up more precious time.   If I had enough forethought, I would have started to do that while he was texting me from the plane that they were just sitting on the tarmac and he was going to miss his connecting flight.

But now I know...and so do you!


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