If you’ve been planning to travel or have traveled recently, I’m sure you are aware that, along with the increased opportunities to “get out there,” there have been many challenges that have accompanied the high level of demand. This is especially true when it comes to air travel. We’ve all heard about or experienced ridiculously long lines at airports, lost luggage, flight delays and cancellations, and other hassles that seem to be worse now than in “the before times.”
Well, fear not, intrepid (and not-so-intrepid) travelers. Legacy Travel Designs has gathered a wealth of knowledge about how to navigate the new world of pandemic-era travel, including the potential hassles of air travel. We hope that our curated list of the best pro tips for air travel will help you get your adventure off to an amazing start!
Booking Flights: Know the Difference Between Value and Price
With airline ticket prices sky-high, it is tempting to find the rock-bottom cheapest flight you can that will get you to your destination. However, consider the real value of your ticket, not just the price. What is your time, comfort, and peace of mind worth? In today’s atmosphere of airline and airport chaos, now may be the time to pay more in order to save your sanity. Here’s the nitty gritty of booking air travel in today’s air travel climate:
The Baggage Situation
What is the best way to avoid your luggage becoming part of the craziness of lost and long-delayed bags? No one is immune to the chaos currently happening in airports worldwide, but here are some tips to mitigate your risk:
Early Arrival – Okay, let’s stop making fun of the people who insist on getting to the airport many hours before a flight departure time. This is reality now. It is not unreasonable to go to the airport 3-4 hours early. It’s just so uncertain nowadays how long your lines for check-in and security will be.
Airline or Credit Card “Fast Pass” Security Line and Lounge Access – To cut down on time spent in airport lines, one of the quickest ways to get expedited security checkpoint access is airline elite status. Many elite credit cards also offer this as a perk, along with airport lounge access so you can enjoy all that free time that you have once you get through security.
TSA PreCheck/Global Entry – These government programs will expedite your processing through outbound security and returning customs/immigration lines. However, wait times for new applications are months long. So apply now if you have any plans to travel within the next year.
Mobile Passport Control App – Even if you don’t have Global Entry, you can download the US Customs and Border Patrol’s free app that will allow you to digitally complete your forms for re-entry into the USA from abroad. Many have found that the lines for MPC passengers are often shorter than those for Global Entry passengers!
What if you have taken all these precautions, but you still find yourself with a delayed or canceled flight, a missing bag, or a missed connection? First of all, try to stay calm. As frustrating as these situations are, throwing a fit is not likely to get the results you need, and it will make you feel worse in the long run. Take a deep breath (or 10), remember that you are safe and on the way to or back from an amazing vacation, and put into place one or more of the strategies below that can actually help.
Invoke privileges that come with elite status – Premium air bookings (Business or First Class, and/or high level points status) often include premium service, including when you have a tight connection or need help rebooking a missed or canceled flight. Elite status members of an airline’s frequent flyer program usually have access to different phone numbers and can enjoy shorter wait times and potentially better service. This is also the time to make use of similar services that may come with your elite-level credit card.
Get in line, but also get on the horn and online – Lines for service at the airport will be long, but getting through to customer service for your airline by phone can be extremely frustrating as well. Make sure you have the airline’s app downloaded so that you can use their chat feature, if available. Also make use of the airline’s WhatsApp number, Twitter account, and website to try communicating in real time. Often these methods will get your through to a real person much more quickly than calling. Here is a breakdown of the best ways to reach some of the major airlines:
If you definitely want to stick with the good old-fashioned phone call, here are some insider clues for how to (more) quickly get help from a real person:
Be aware of your rights – If you are traveling within the European Union, there are strict rules for passenger compensation when flights are delayed or canceled. Also, when you need to be rebooked because an airline delayed or canceled your flight, you can ask to be put on any airline, not just the original airline or its partners.
Lost Luggage – Take a few immediate steps.
Finally, if you are experiencing a lengthy delay or are “stuck” somewhere overnight, try to go with the flow. Enjoy the extra time and look for the positive in the situation.
While we do not have a crystal ball to predict where, when or how issues will arise or a magic wand to make problems disappear, we do know that these pro tips can help smooth the turbulence of the current air travel situation. And whatever happens, remember that the three most important items on your packing list are patience, gratitude, and a smile. After all, you’re on your way to (or from) an amazing adventure!
We’ll create your perfect vacation recipe from scratch, sourced from the finest ingredients below, and add our special sauce.
Art and Culture
Meeting the Locals
Rest and Relaxation
Indigenous Craft Workshops
We’ll add personalized surprises sprinkled throughout.
SCHEDULE CONSULT CALL
COPYRIGHT © legacy travel designs 2020
DESIGNED BY GIRLBOSS DESIGNER
plan your trip
TERMS AND CONDITIONS
Legacy Travel Designs, an independent affiliate of Gifted Travel Network, a Virtuoso Member Agency
Florida ST39093 - Washington Unified Business ID (UBI) # 603 308 394
We are not accepting clients who are residents of California, but can make referrals to advisors who do.
Join our community and we’ll deliver our weekly newsletter, the Legacy Legend, directly to your inbox every Sunday. It spotlights family fun ideas, travel tips, insider info, and unique vacation destinations.
Your have successfully subscribed to our newsletter. Don't forget to check your spam folder.
INTERNAL USE ONLY