I read a really good article today here. George Hobica of airfarewatchdog.com says that if you need to fly to an important event, don’t schedule your flight within a few hours of it, avoid connecting flights, and arrive super early for your flight in order to minimize the chances of missing that important event.
Oh lord did this article resonate with me. People call in frantic and screaming from the airport, telling me that the stupid airline canceled their filght and that they MUST get on a flight soon because they need to be at a wedding, a funeral, a client dinner…the list goes on. As Hobica points out, things happen. In these days of overbooked flights, mechanical delays, long lines that stretch for what seems like miles for baggage and security, you can’t expect that your flight will depart as scheduled and that you’ll be on it. Of course I understand that since you’ve paid for your ticket, you should expect the service. But unfortunately sometimes things don’t go as planned and the best you can do is minimize your chances of being caught in a pickle.
Another tip: check to see if there are flights (and the number of seats) departing after your departure time for your route. If you miss your scheduled flight, the airline will try their best to put you on the next flight out. I wouldn’t want to miss the last flight out, for whatever reason, and have to stay overnight.