Traveling to new places is a great experience. It’s something you look forward to weeks before but it can be partially ruined by the trip. Even though they are the fastest means of transport, flights can be pretty tiring and annoying when something doesn’t go by the plan. And sometimes it’s because you have made the wrong call. In order to avoid annoying situations and have a comfy and short trip, here’s what you can do:
1. Forget about chronically late flights
In some countries, you can check any domestic flights and see how often each one of them is late. Some airline sites offer this information but it’s also possible to call the airline to find out. Some flights are really right every single time. It’s best if you can book flights that are 100% or almost 100% on time.
2. Frequently check with your airline
You need to make sure that your flight is operating on time or that it’s operating at all. It’s important to reconfirm it a few weeks, a few days and a few hours before the flight. It may sound weird, but some airlines simply cancel flights without notifying the passengers. Don’t rely on the airline to contact you on time – it’s better you call them first.
3. Choose the direct airline carefully
Even if you have a direct flight, that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s going to be a pleasant one. You can find information on almost any direct flight on sites like SeatGuru.com or AirlineQuality.com. There you can find out if the legroom is big enough and if the washroom is clean. You should also ask your friends about their experiences if they have been on the same flight before. That way, you’ll avoid unpleasant surprises.
4. Check the in-flight entertainment
It’s possible to find out which movies will be available in-flight on the website of the airline. The list of the movies is frequently updated, so maybe you’ll discover you don’t have to carry your tablet with you on the plane because you’ll be entertained with a good movie.
5. Avoid layovers
Whenever you can avoid the layovers – they are exhausting and sometimes pretty tricky. There is a possibility you won’t manage to catch the connection flight if some issues arise. The simplest way to avoid a layover to look up air charter hire– it’s the best option because sometimes there simply won’t be any direct flight available. You can also try to contact certain airlines and ask them for help. Some of them could come up with a good suggestion. Another way is to book your flight as soon as possible so that you have more choices. Of course, it’s not always possible to know your plans months ahead.
6. Have a longer layover
If you simply must have a layover, then make sure it’s a longer one. You need some extra time between the flights. 45 minutes to change planes may not be enough if you are on a really busy airport. It’s safer to look for a two-hour layover and change the planes without any stress and fuss. Bring a good book or a tablet so that you can pass the time while waiting.
7. Have alternate flights prepared
In case of an emergency, you need to know your alternatives. If you miss your connecting flight or your initial flight gets canceled, you need to have a backup. In case the airline canceled the flight due to their own mistake (for example, a mechanical issue), they will sometimes switch you to a competitor’s flight. However, it won’t always be the case. So, it’s better if you have the Official Airline Guide to find the alternate flight more easily.
8. Line up and call
In case your flight has been canceled or delayed, you better get in line with other passengers with the same problem. However, you shouldn’t simply stand in the line and wait for your turn. Call the airline on the phone to make new arrangements because you may lose the alternative seat while you get to the check-in desk.
9. Be prepared for the worst
Even if you do everything by the book, sometimes things will simply go wrong. That’s why you should make sure that you have something to keep you (and your kids) occupied while waiting. You can buy a daily pass to the airline’s club lounge or simply bring a game or a book with you.
It’s important to have a comfortable and short trip whenever it’s possible. It is also a part of the experience, so there is no reason why you shouldn’t do your best and make it as pleasant as possible.
Written by Audrey Taylor
Audrey was born in San Francisco and moved to Adelaide at the ahge of five. Marketer, researcher and social medals manager on hold. Full time Mum of a cheerful two year old. Graduated from Queensford College. Worked in a couple of marketing agencies across Australia. Travelled across Europe.