Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Ways to Avoid Delays (Air Travel)

It's the travel peak season once again! For those who will travel which requires you to pass at an airport, it may feel almost like a miracle if you will have a hassle-free time at major local and international airports. Delays in the aviation industry are now getting more the attention in the news whether caused by extreme weather disturbances, national security concerns, mechanical/technical problems or just a simple (but getting habitual) late arrival of turnaround aircraft. The news are everywhere claiming that delays have gotten worse year-by-year.

Even the Philippines' leading budget carrier Cebu Pacific advertised a few years back that their flights are leaving/arriving on-time 9 out of 10 times and even has a 90% on-time flights logo in their electronic tickets. But now I can't see that logo anymore everytime I receive my e-ticket, guess what? So it is very safe to assume that their flights are now leaving and arriving late more than 10% of the time. YES they are!!! What happened? Why the delays continue day-by-day even they are now operating a much reliable brand new Airbus airplanes compared with aging DC-9's and considering that their fleet were drastically increased?

You can blame the worsening ground and air traffic condition or how airlines operate their business but the point is the delays are sometime becoming unbearable for the passengers. We don't pay airlines for us to stay long in a cramped airport with pathetic facilities which even does not include a functioning drinking fountain (if there's even one).

So much for my ranting... As passengers, we can follow certain guidelines to help us prepare for that uneventful delay.

* The best time to fly is during the morning. Delays normally worsen throughout the day so if you are traveling early in the morning the chances of delays are greatly reduced.

* When booked with a connecting flight always leave enough time if you have to change airlines or go through long lines of airport security again. Budget airlines only offers point-to-point service, in other words they will not be in any reason be liable if you miss your connecting flight/s even if you are traveling with the same airlines.

* It always pays to read the "terms and conditions" section at the back of your paper ticket or at the airlines' official website. It is the passenger's duty to be familiar with the airline's rule for baggage limitations, identification requirements and check-in procedures.

* The most important tip I can share to you is to "BE EARLY." It is our responsibility as passengers to arrive at the airport with plenty of time to check-in and pass through security.

If you view these tips as inconveniences there's a way to circumvent all the hassles that a passenger might endure... buy a Business Class ticket in that way there will be a shorter queue at the check-in counters as they have a dedicated counter for you plus you can enjoy the lounge facilities before boarding your on-time/delayed flight.


freeze said...

I just had a terrible experience with Cebu Pacific yesterday, we had a connecting flight but our flight was delayed (after getting confirmation that we can still connect, we proceeded) and upon reaching the transit point, even we already have our boarding pass, we were denied transfers since the flight was overbooked even the gates are still open. They did nothing to compensate it.


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