Regardless of whether you’re the kind of person who’s always taking to the skies or a traveler who rarely gets outside of their hometown, there’s always a chance that you could find yourself facing the stress of a sudden flight delay or cancellation.
As with most things in life, it’s how you choose to respond to this challenge that matters at the end of the day. After all, you might not be able to stop a sudden storm from happening or prevent an airline team from going on strike, but you can make sure that you’re always prepared to stay calm and collected when the worst happens. To help you make the most out of your travel experiences, whether they’re delayed or not, here are some top tips for surviving unexpected issues.
Always Choose Non-Stop Flights When Possible
Although it’s not always easy or affordable, it’s safe to say that booking a direct flight is almost always the best bet when you’re hoping to keep your risk of a delay as low as possible. When you have a direct flight, you don’t have to worry about multiple different planes taking off at the right time, and there’s no threat to think about when it comes to issues like missed connections.
While direct flight tickets can be somewhat pricier, it’s worth thinking about whether you can really afford to risk losing time on a layover if you miss your connection. If you do have to book a layover, then make sure that you give yourself plenty of time between flights just in case a problem does arise, and you end up arriving at your destination an hour or two out of your schedule.
It’s hard to prepare for everything in this world, but when it comes to reducing your risk of flight delays, one place to start is to keep an eye on the weather. This can help you to figure out whether you’re more likely to face a cancellation or not. If possible, try to learn about weather issues around your destination airport and your departure airport at different times throughout the year. This could help you to make a more informed decision about when you should book your flight.
Arrive at the Airport Early
If your flight is going to be delayed anyway, then you might wonder why you’d bother trying to turn up at the airport ahead of time. However, being early can be beneficial in several different ways. The first thing to remember is that a cushion of additional time can help you to better-manage any transport delays that occur due to poor weather on the path to the airport. Additionally, since cancellations and delays are only announced in the initial hours before a flight, if you’re early, you’ll be able to get to the front of the queue for rebooking your seat!
Keep the Essentials on Hand
When you’re packing your luggage in preparation for your big trip, make sure that you keep plenty of important items in your hand luggage, including toiletries that you might need if you’re stranded for a couple of hours, and an extra battery pack for your technology. This will help to ensure that you not only have the charge you need to call the airline if someone else is using the outlets at your chosen airport, but it will also give you a source of entertainment too.
Although having the right items with you at all times won’t necessarily stop you from facing a flight delay or cancellation, it will mean that you have more comfort to tap into when you’re feeling stressed and frustrated.
Look for Other Flight Options
Unfortunately, when your flight is delayed, your airline might not be very forthcoming with the details. You might just be told that you’re going to have to wait for a little longer, but you won’t necessarily get a reason for why. You can always look into this issue by looking at the flights around you and finding out whether it’s a problem with the plane itself, or whether the climate is to blame.
If the plane is the problem, then you can look for alternative seats on different flights which may allow you to get up in the air much faster. Some companies will be happy to book you on another airline so long as it’s not going to cost any more than your standard ticket.