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How Not to Go Postal – Surviving a Flight Cancellation

You are gaping at the flight board in disbelief. Right next to your connecting international flight number is the word CANCELED. Your stomach drops, and you begin to panic. Don’t stress. There are options available to you and they can all help you stay sane. Everyone knows how frustrating it is to be forced to deal with travel delays. After weeks of scrounging for your passport, investing in an expedited emergency passport replacement, all on top of paying hundreds of dollars for an airline ticket, it’s easy to be upset. However, these options can have you on your way to your destination without having to strangle someone.

The best and most effective way to deal with travel delays is to simply be prepared. When you are booking your ticket, look at the other options, just in case your flight gets canceled. Also check flights that are going out of any nearby airports. Many times the agent that is trying to rebook you will not even weigh this option, but if you remind him or her, she may be able to help you get a flight out of that airport. Simply knowing your options can give you peace of mind, as well as an easy solution, should you be faced with problems at the airport. Make sure your passport is valid. Visit or go online to a passport office and make sure you have all the necessary documents required for international travel.

When you first hear or see that your flight has been canceled, stay calm. Keeping a cool head will help you find a rational and reasonable solution without any more problems. It’s completely understandable to be upset about such an unexpected delay, but fuming about it won’t help you at all. Raining curses on the desk clerk is a guaranteed way to just make your situation even worse. Remaining calm and humane can help you get the results you’re looking for. Be nice, but be firm as well.

One of the things that many people don’t even realize is the obligation many airlines hold to their passengers if their flight gets canceled due to their fault. If your flight is canceled because of personnel or technical problems, the airline is obliged to give you compensation for an overnight stay and a meal voucher. However, this isn’t the case if your flight is canceled due to bad weather or other factors outside of the airline’s control.

Simply planning for a delay or a cancellation before they happen can give you the upper hand when trying to formulate a Plan B. Look for flights that are earlier during the day. The logic is simple. If there is a delay that pushes back all the flights, it’s the later flights that will be canceled before the earlier ones. By having one of the first flights, you will be among the last flights to be canceled, if the delay doesn’t lift.