Delayed flights can be a beast, especially when they have far-reaching effects. As many of you are aware, the American government was shut down for over a month in 2019. The subsequent long lines, staff shortages, and flight delays were felt by travelers all across the country. The American government reached an agreement and the government re-opened so those ridiculous delays won’t be commonplace any longer.
However, this weekend there will be flights delayed at major US airports throughout the holiday because of the weather that is already affecting flights all over the country. These delays will continue to impact travelers all across the country. Air travel has a ripple effect, and a few flight delays in one part of the country can make a difference to travelers on the opposite side of the nation.
So what do you do when your flight is delayed? How do you cope with grace and not act like a monkey towards the people around you (cause I know sometimes you want to lash out at people when you are stressed, right)?
Go to a lounge
Having lounge access is one of the best perks of flying. Depending on the type of credit card you have, you may be entitled to complimentary access. With your American Express Platinum card, Platinum Members have unlimited complimentary access to The CenturionSM Lounges. You can also apply for Priority Pass and have access to 1,000 lounges in over 130 countries.
With your Chase Sapphire Reserve card, you and your authorized users can access more than 1,200 VIP airport lounges worldwide with Priority Pass Select. You get to enjoy lounge amenities such as Wi-Fi, free snacks, beverages and more when you activate your membership.
These are just two options, check what cards are best for you and your circumstances.
If you have your own travel blanket and travel pillow, you can relax in extreme comfort while waiting for your next flight!
Or, check to see if the airport you are in has Minute Suites. You can rent a suite and relax in privacy.
Have a nice meal
Airport food is no longer something you have to tolerate. Airports have finally realized that traveler’s want to have a variety of options when they are in transit, and many airports across the country have delectable options for the discerning pallet. Skip the fast food and find a restaurant where you can relax and enjoy an adult beverage and a hearty meal.
Get a massage
Having someone work out the kinks in your neck is a fabulous way to de-stress when you are facing a long delay. Airport massages tend to be more expensive than a regular massage, but wouldn’t it be better to board your plane after being massaged by a skilled set of hands?
Carry noise cancelling headphones
If you prefer to sit in the boarding area, make sure to have noise canceling headphones. A delayed flight is so much better when you can use technology! This way, you can watch/listen/play with your electronic devices and not disturb anyone. Even better, you won’t be disturbed by anyone.
NOTE: Do NOT have the volume so high that you can’t hear any announcements around you. Make sure to still pay attention to your environment so you don’t miss pertinent information regarding your flight.
Pay attention to the departure boards
When your flight is delayed, there is a good chance your flight may be moved to another gate. When those gate changes occur, the most current information is usually found on the departure boards. Check these boards frequently, as delayed flight information changes rapidly and you need to be kept up to date.
Charge your electronics
This may sound like an obvious one, but many people think they have enough charge to get them on the plane, and then are unpleasantly surprised when the plane doesn’t have an outlet. You don’t know how long you will be delayed so make sure all electronics are charged to 100%.
A couple of more tips
Air travel can be fluid at the best of times. That is why it is always best to have travel insurance. Many credit cards come with automatic travel insurance plans. Check to see what is covered under those policies. Do your due diligence and make sure you are covered in case of travel delay. Call the 800 number on the back of your credit card and find out what, if any, coverage you have for travel delays. If you aren’t covered by your card, get travel insurance independently. One option for travel insurance is RoamRight travel insurance.
NOTE: I do NOT recommend traveling without travel insurance. Read why you should never travel without it.
Last but certainly not least, sign up for flight updates with your airline and download the app of the airline you are flying with. You should be able to get up-to-date information on those apps which can help you not overstress.
Remember, being angry, irritated, rude, and upset won’t make anything go faster. You can’t control a flight delay. But you can control the way you react to any situation. By doing some of the options listed above, you can endure any flight delay relatively stress-free!
Did you know I am taking a small group of people to Johannesburg? Read all about it here. Why not come with us?