With nearly 23% of flights delayed and one of every 35 flights cancelled, frequent business travelers are bound to experience a flight delay now and then. In our last blog, we offered information to help the frequent business traveler prepare in the case of a foreseeable delay. But if the delay occurs when you are already at the airport, what’s a business traveler to do? Do this:
- Remain calm. What is going on is out of your control, but what is in your control is your reaction. Take a deep breath and realize that this is the reality, and that you only need do your best to get through it all.
- Immediately call the airline* and make every attempt to speak with a live person. If you feel the need to stand in line, do so, but also make the call on your cell phone. It is likely that you will receive help via the phone before you reach the desk.
- Realize that any information you receive about the delay is only an estimate and by no means a guarantee.
- Determine whether connecting flights will be missed and take action to book new connecting flights.*
- Be informed and ask questions* - do so politely and firmly. Know what flights are available on other carriers; OntheFlyis an app that may be helpful in this circumstance. Ask to be booked on another flight or for the airline to endorse your ticket on another flight. Airlines are not required to do this, but may do so if possible and if your case has been well presented.
- Contact those who will be affected by your late arrival, such as business partners, airport pickup, or anyone with whom you are meeting.
- Look for a place to stay for the night. If the delay is long, or if the flight is cancelled, acquire a hotel room or return home. This is particularly true if the delay is widespread across multiple flights or airlines.
- Find baggage. If you already checked, inquire about where it is being stored and what must be done to retrieve it.
For a business traveler, arriving to the destination quickly and seamlessly is essential. Relationships and revenue are often at stake. Handling delays properly will not only save the travel budget, but will also save time and stress.
*Gwin’s Travel makes this easy! Travelers who book through Gwin’s Travel need only make ONE call – no lines and no forever on-holds. Even when the office is closed, our In-House After Hours Helpline will assist travelers with all aspects of this process and get you to your destination as quickly and seamlessly as possible. In addition, Gwin’s Travel makes it simple to keep all information in one spot and to stay updated on flight information with the TripCase app. TripCase provides one touch access to critical trip details, as well as relevant real-time alerts and notifications, and monitoring of events that could affect travel plans.
May you have happy, less stressful travels, without delay. But in the case delays do happen, may these tips help it all go as smoothly as is possible.
Additional sources: Forbes, Reuters, LifeHacker