If you happen to leave during HOLIDAY SEASON or during the RUSH HOURS, make an effort to arrive to the airport at least an hour or two earlier; even though you won’t save any money, you’ll have a lot to gain from a psychological point of view. Imagine that you’ll have plenty of time to relax, go on one last shopping spree or why not, eat something before going aboard the plane; you will be able to do all these if things go smoothly.
If they don’t, than you’ll certainly be able to make plans in case your flight is somewhat delayed or solve any other problems, such as long and time-consuming queues, an eleventh-hours crisis, in case they occur. You’ll unquestionably catch your flight in plenty of time.
Don’t forget about the curbside baggage check service provided by the majority of the carriers. It may come in handy. Airlines usually charge $1 per bag, but that dollar may prove to worth a lost more as your won’t have to stand in never-ending queues. You will just go directly to your gate to check in.
This service is particularly priceless when the airport is extraordinarily jam-packed, your luggage is so weighty, or when you are behind schedule. Moreover, in case you are a FREQUENT FLYER, you may want to consider joining an airport club. There are plenty of frequent flyer’s programs which besides the usual amenities, may grant you the access a more comfy place to wait than the customary lobby. Being kind and polite always pays off, especially in an airport.
Keep this in mind when you need help. Don’t start yelling or talking furiously to the gate agents or any other person from the airport personnel. You are more probable to obtain what you need provided you talk calmly when you ask for their help.
It’s good to keep in mind when you are faced with a flight delay
Your first worry is not to go gnashing your teeth. Calm down and try to find out what caused the delay. This information is useful to help you think of a second plan. Remember that there is a toll-free number, so use it. You have more than one airline to get to your destination so, find out whether different airlines are going through similar delays.
Remember that there is a so-called “magic bullet” Rule 240 which can take you to your destination when your flight is either cancelled or delayed. This Rule 240 stipulates that in case the flight is delayed or cancelled due to anything other than weather, the airline has the obligation of putting you on next available flight, irrespective of the company, just the immediate available flight and not. So if weather has nothing to do with your delay, than you can go to the ticketing agent and ask: “Would you be able to 240 me?”. It may work. However, you should know that not all airlines are required to have a Rule 240.
Furthermore, carriers have versions of Rule 240 like chalk and cheese, and so air travellers will always find it more and more difficult to stand for their rights.
It’s good to keep in mind if your flight was cancelled
In case your flight was cancelled, then you have the option of making a reservation on the next available trip to your destination. More often than not, airline staff will attempt to fill in their own next flight. You are not compelled to accept that if you do not want to. You have the option of requesting them to book you on a competitor’s next flight, if this suits you more. Don’t forget to check the airline’s on-time arrival records as well as the weather conditions.
It’s good to keep in mind when you happen to get bumped
The simplest way to avoid getting bumped is not arrive early. How early? Generally speaking, you ought to be at the loading gate at least 10 minutes before in case of an U.S. flight, 20 minutes to/from Bahamas, Canada, and Mexico and 30 to/from any other international points. Remember! You must be at the loading gate and not the airport entrance. Anyway, if your plane was overbooked and you’re stranded on the airport, make sure that you get a free of charge confirmed round-trip ticket and verify that your seat is reserved on the next plane. You may also ask for a travel voucher which may be of use in case you fly often.
It’s good to keep in mind when your bags were lost
In case your baggage is LOST or DETERIORATED, you make be required to roughly estimate the value of your baggage. You should know that you may be entitled to obtain 1,000 SDR (Special Drawing Rights)/$1,500 for each passenger in case the airline deteriorates or misplaces your suitcases. This value was set by the Montreal Convention which laid down the rules for the international carriage of passengers, baggage and cargo.