Travel Delays: How To Make Them Less Stressful

Travel Delays: How To Make Them Less Stressful

Travel delays happen all the time. But these are some useful ways to make those delays less stressful for your next vacation.

How to deal with travel delays

How to deal with travel delays

Spring break is right around the corner–and that means a lot of travel plans. But, it can also mean a lot of travel delays–think the holiday travel chaos. Jenn shares how to take what we saw happen this past summer and holiday season, and make sure your next vacation won’t get ruined because of delay.

Let’s start off with the 3 things we learned from summer and holiday travel delays

Airlines stink at communication–the best way to stay up to date with an airline is to download their app/push notifications. Alerts, travel delays, information will appear there first–sometimes even before your gate agent will announce it. To get in touch with an airline, DON’T try calling them. Reach out on social media (Twitter is often the best). The response time is much, much faster.

Expect weather delays–Especially during the spring, we never know what that weather will throw at us. Go into your trip fully anticipating some sort of delay–that alone can help ease stress, because you will be prepared for it.

Delays have a ripple effect–make sure you’re looking at the overall weather/delay situation, not just at your home airport or destination.

And how can we make travel delays less stressful…

Avoid low cost carriers if you can: Here’s why: 

  • They have a smaller fleet and don’t have sister/partner airlines. So when delays happen, the issues compound faster and have a bigger impact.
  • Look for an airline that has a lot of flights to your destination–or ones that have a partner airline that you could easily move over to.
  • Do direct flights–less changes=less opportunities for delays/things to go wrong.

Carry-on is essential when it comes to avoiding stress during travel delays… for these reasons

  • If you do end up with travel delays or cancellations, you will have all of your stuff. So if you need to change plans/flights/stay at a hotel/or even drive, you have your belongings with you.
  • It’s also so much easier for an airline to get you on another flight sooner, if they don’t have to find your bags and reroute them.

Don’t get your carry-on gate checked

  • Make sure you know the airline’s restrictions… look at the plane size, some have smaller overhead space.
  • Try to board in an early zone to avoid having to check a bag due to lack of space (buy a premium seat, use points for an upgrade, or check to see if your airline has a pay to pre-board option).

Buy airport lounge access

Even if you don’t have an airline lounge status, a lot of airports have lounges that you can pay to enter, especially major hub airports. You can register a time slot/pay online in advance and it can give you some much needed space, food, drinks, time to relax if you have travel delays.

Book an airport or local hotel in advance, as a backup/just in case

  • Especially if you see a weather delay happening–you’ll secure a room before the rush happens and you won’t be scrambling.
  • Make sure you can CANCEL it with no fees–many apps/hotels allow you to cancel up to a certain point, so if you don’t need the hotel, it’s an easy cancellation.

Travel insurance is a necessity for travel delays

  • They can help cover costs of changed flights/hotels/clothes/lost bags/etc. if you have unexpected travel delays.
  • Have insurance information already in your phone for easy access/calling/knowing exactly what you will be covered for.