As we publish this report, the East Coast is experiencing a blizzard of record-breaking proportions. Should you be unfortunate
enough to be stuck here half way through a journey with your family, there are a few tips you should know and some added advice.
- Call your airline. Don’t make the mistake of thinking a trip to the airport will change flights. If they’re canceled, they’re canceled. Some hotels are offering extended check-out until 2PM. At the time of this post, some airline hotlines are experiencing wait times of over an hour, so if you’re in a hotel, you might not want to use the room’s telephone.
- Remain civil towards the airlines and airline attendants. Being nasty will not only get you nowhere, it might get you to the back of the line. Fast. I have stood behind folks who were demanding this or that, only to get nowhere. Then I waltz up with my best “I’m with ya, Mr. Desk Agent” and Boom! I got on the next flight. So be nice. Breathe. Go get yourself a book, and toys for the kids and relax.
- If you are given the chance to break your family up on to two flights, my advice is to do it (HOWEVER- this is of course if your party isn’t One Adult and several small children.) If you give up this opportunity, there’s a chance you won’t get that option again. Yes, you’ll be all together… waiting at the airport.
- If they can put your family on a flight, but can’t seat you together, take it, and deal with seats later. Most passengers will offer to let you sit with your kid if you ask nicely.
- “Rule 240” Does NOT apply during this storm. For those in the know, Rule 240 indicates that an airline that cancels a flight for any reason of their own design owes some compensation to its passengers, whether that be in the form of a voucher, upgrade on a later flight or (in rare instances) cash. Again, Rule 240 WILL NOT WORK when the FAA has canceled all flights due to inclement weather.