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any helpful ideas when your flight is cancelled

Any helpful ideas when your flight is cancelled or you miss a connection? I had a copy of Airline rules with me when I traveled back then but maybe those requirements don't exist anymore ? . Used to be that Delta or other carriers could put you on another airline if they did not have another connection for you. That happened to me once.. and once the flight was delayed 3 hours and they put me on another connection.
Thanks

Posted by
544 posts

If you travel with a cell phone, you can sign up for text message updates. That way when you land after your first flight and turn on your phone, you'll get messages with your new itenerary. You can also usually use the airline's website for free if the plane has wifi. The third option is to head to the transfer desk when you arrive at your connecting airport. If you type in your confirmation code it will either print you your new boarding passes or tell you to wait in line for an agent.

Posted by
311 posts

We just had a flight cancelled in Sept at the end of our RS My Way Europe tour. We were leaving Rome. We boarded, got pushed back and sat. We were told there was a computer problem and we would be returning to the gate. 40 mins later we got pushed back again, rolled a few yards and stopped. The captain came on and said,"It's one of those days." Now we had a repair issue. We were pushed back again and told we might be cancelled as we needed a fuel pump and it had to come from TEXAS! We and the crew had been on the plane for 3 plus hours. We were cancelled. They put us up at a hotel. i used to think this would be fun. =P All 240 of us had to deplane, get on a bus back to the terminal, go through customs, wait for our bags, get on another bus and go to our hotel about 20 mins away. The hotel they used near the airport was filled because of another cancelled flight! We got to the hotel and had to check in individually. An hour and a half later we were in our room. Now we had to called and get new seats on the flight tomorrow! Went through the whole check in process the next day and our flight was 3 hours late leaving. We were fed a good meal and given plenty of wine. The funniest part of the whole thing was when we landed in Philadelphia and had to go through TSA for our connecting flight, one of the agents said loudly,"Where HAVE you people been? We were waiting for you!"

Posted by
7476 posts

Cancelled flights can change your priorities, so keep a positive attitude....and maybe a few handy snacks. : )

Last year our flight from Amsterdam to Seattle was cancelled - found this out from a Delta text msg when we were arriving at Rome for our Rome-to-Amsterdam flight. We were rerouted on Alitalia from Rome-to-JFK and then given the last row of seats from JFK to Seattle. (We had reserved the 1st row of Economy Plus for our flight!) But, positive attitude; we had tickets for a plane! Delta needed 10 people to give up their seats, and when the incentive reached $1000 Amex Card each, we gave up our seats and stayed at a decently paid hotel near JFK, arriving in Seattle the next day.

Posted by
2532 posts

The above advice about a cell phone and signing up for alerts would be my thought as well. Also, I try to book flights all on the same airline and with additional flights that could be utilized if a delay creeps in.

Posted by
610 posts

I found that doing your own research can be valuable. Last May our flight from Tampa to Newark was delayed, making us miss our connection to Paris. Since it was the last flight of the day, they said they had no option but to put us on a flight leaving the next evening and getting there an entire day later. We only had 4 days planned in Paris, so we were really dissapointed. Before leaving the airport we did some research and found a flight leaving to London late enough that we could make it. We asked the attendant if they could get us from Tampa to Newark, then to London and then to Paris. They authorized the extra ticket, and even though we had an extra transfer, we arrived in Paris only a few hours later than planned, saving a whole day of our trip. We found that the customer service rep was not willing to search outside the box for this solution, but when we came up with it on our own, they were willing to accommodate. It helped that we hadn't checked a bag. It's always worth asking!

Posted by
1199 posts

Like Tamara, I find doing my own research helps. However, I don't wait until the cancellation or delay occurs to look into alternatives. Before leaving, I make a list of alternate flights that will get me to my destination, ready to feed to the airline's phone reps. This has become a part of my pre-trip preparation. As previously noted, most agents will not or can not quickly find alternatives, but are more than willing to assist if you give them options that work. Usually, I happily toss this list once my trip is completed, not having had to use it. However, that time that i was notified that my Brussels--Dulles flight had been cancelled as I was on my way to the airport, I was very glad to have the information on a Brussels--O'Hare flight that would work. I called the airline while on the train to the airport, feed them the information, we were re-ticketed, and happily walked past the loooong line of people at the airport ticket counter who were trying to make new arrangements home.

Posted by
7476 posts

Tamara brings up a good point. You may have more options if you just have a carry-on. We wouldn't have been eligible to receive those $1000 Amex Cards if we had a checked bag on the JFK-to-Seattle airplane that I mentioned above.

Posted by
610 posts

Eric - that is a great, experienced traveler planning strategy! I'm going to make a list like yours before leaving for the airport this time so there isn't so much last minute panic. I'd never thought of that. We are also planning on leaving on an earlier flight this year so if something happens we have more options for getting on a later one.

Posted by
2037 posts

What Eric said...know your options and alternatives. And Viber. We recently encountered weather delays on our flight from Columbus to Detroit to Paris. By the time we resumed boarding in Columbus, the 9:30 connection in Detroit was pretty much a forgone conclusion. The gate agent was politely and apologetically advising passengers to just hang it up, go home, and start again tomorrow. The two couples in front of me in the line sadly agreed; I asked him, "How about the 10:35 flight #XYZ to London, and then a connection to Paris?" He punched a few buttons, smiled at me, and said, "Yeah that would work...want that?" We did, especially considering that the 20 year old nephew was now in Paris waiting for nonexistent uncles to appear. I used to think such precautions were paranoid, and took a little razzing for it. (Last laughs are the best ones). Now the first thing I do after booking air is to note all other later departure options. Also, none of us had international phone plans. Had we not all signed up for Viber, a free wifi phone and text service, we would have had a big problem. As it was we found the free wifi zone at Heathrow and were able to contact our nephew waiting at CDG with new plans. (The luggage took 3 days to get to us, but I had the kid and didn't care about clean socks).

Posted by
2796 posts

And I will add our two stories.
First, in 2011, not yet knowing how best to do these things, I had a weird booking of Philly to Boston to Zurich to Budapest, through Expedia. Dumb, as this started with USAir and they also have a Philly to Zurich direct. I kept checking on that flight as I wanted to get us rerouted if possible. On flight day, there was nasty weather up and down the sat coast, and when leaving for the airport it was easy to trace back our Philly to Boston plane and figure out that it was 90 minutes or so behind by then, we would not make our Zurich flight, and the Zurich flight was the last flight out of Boston to Europe that evening. So after security we went straight to the USAir desk and told them. Agent checked the flights, saw we were right about the flight to Boston, and that there were indeed 2 seats left on the Philly Zurich flight. And then agent was delighted to find out when she asked where our bags were that they were on our backs! Andmade the switches.
This past fall it was Lufthansa from Philly to Istanbul via Frankfurt. And on flight morning found out about a big delay in our flight out -found out later plane had been grounded for a couple hours leaving Frankfurt for here because of mechanical issues. Ultimately, we got very lucky and made the Istanbul flight by the skin of our teeth, They had not already rerouted us as we did not have any checked bags. But I had already done our homework. Lufthansa had another flight to Istanbul 4 hours later, which we wanted no part of. Instead, found that there was, first, a Turkish Air flight, they partner, that would leave only 3 hours later, and second, even better, they had a Frankfurt to Nuremberg flight maybe 50 minutes later that then had a connection to Istanbul via TA that could save us another 35 minutes into Istanbul, further minimizing our delay. So we were prepared to get the best alternative given they caused the delay, and not just accept the long delay.

Posted by
106 posts

For Delta Airlines: Delta Assist on Twitter. I was never a Twitter user but I am now. Flights changed and or cancelled by Delta can be changed and rearranged via Twitter very promptly. Give it a try.

Posted by
544 posts

Larry, really good point about getting on the flight you wanted since you didn't have checked baggage. I was delayed on a Iceland AIr flight out of Seattle and called in to get rescheduled. They wanted to put me onto the British Airways flight instead, but since I'd already checked in my bag we couldn't make the switch because there wouldn't be time to get my bags back out and checked in for the BA flight.