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Traveling Troubles, Travails & Tips

With an affinity for adventure and an appetite for the uncertain, I grabbed my carry on and flew east for Thanksgiving.

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There’s no such thing as over planning. Believe me, I’ve made just about every mistake in the book.

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Wait, where am I?

All you can do is continue the anecdotal climb and just breathe.

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But what’s an excursion without troubles and travails?

At least struggles derive Tips for Future Travels:

  • Clear you’re cache before booking a flight. They say airfare rises in price each time you look at it.
  • If you fly often, get a frequent flyer miles account.
  • Use Google to book and search flights. Type: “flights from x to z” and click more results. eDreams is good too.
  • Ask for upgrades (Sometimes, first class is only a few dollars more.)
  • If you’ve been assigned a middle seat (or any seat you don’t like), call the airline to switch it. I often times take the exit row to ensure I get a window seat.
  • Make to-do & packing lists using iPhone Notes, for easy access (Any.Do is a great task app too.)
  • Pack snacks. Yes, you can bring food through security
  • Pack a water bottle. Just chug it before going through security. Hydrated up. See  ya never, $4.00 terminal water bottle.
  • BYO Booze. The limit is 3 oz. so you’re golden 🙂 If you’re flying international though, it’s usually free
  • Schedule a group shuttle to the airport. It’s much cheaper than taxis.
  • If available at the airport, use mobile boarding passes. No need to panic about locating that easily lost paper copy.
  • Don’t check a bag. 80% of the time, I get my bag complimentary checked after security, before boarding.
  • When in doubt ask. People love to teach. Toot the ego.
  • Stay away from the anticipatory boarding herd. It’s such a cluster and never decreases wait time.
  • On an overbooked flight, take advantage of the perks if you can swing it. Give up your seat and take the next available flight because you’ll receive some awesome deals if you do it right.
  • If your flight has been delayed by a minute or cancelled, you can get a full refund.
  • If you have trouble/bad experience, tweet/contact the airline. They respond.
  • Here are some more travel hacks.

Most importantly, double check all of your fights. Do as I say, not as I do…

I just barely noticed I had booked myself a trip back to San Jose….Costa Rica instead of California. #F

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A summer in Costa Rica part 2?

The Delta representative was kind enough to waive my change fee, but I still had to pay the price for a new flight. Travel Tip: Sometimes buying insurance comes in handy.

Seriously, double check your flights. They say we learn best by teaching others. You see where I’m going with this.

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My flight to the east coast was originally a red eye Wednesday night arriving in VA early Thursday (well actually, I accidentally booked my flight a week early, but that’s a whole other story of a mistake).

A snow storm was expected to slam and interfere with my flight, so I called Delta and got my flight rerouted and bumped earlier. Travel Tip: Your airline will typically rebook your flight free of charge for weather-related issues.

My shuttle bus dropped me off at SFO (the San Francisco airport-when you fly a lot, you start labeling cities by the airport) with a few hours to spare. Not my typical style, but you’ve gotta fly with the rest of the flock in public transpo I suppose.

Adventuring through the terminal, I found a yoga room. Travel Tip: Burlington, Dallas, Albuquerque, Raleigh, and Chicago airports have yoga rooms.

A zen kat’s dream, amirite?

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Time to board. As we were heading to the runway, the pilot announced a mechanical malfunction.

Oh no. Back to the terminal. Deplane. Chaos ensues.

Bye bye Economy Comfort seat. Travel Tip: It never hurts to be polite to these poor airline attendants. Also, if you see an empty seat upon take off, swipe it!

The plane wouldn’t to be ready for another 5 hours, meaning I might miss my connecting flight. um wut.

Being the tech enthusiast I claim to be, I hopped on the Delta app to switch my flight, only to book a flight that just announced a weather delay.

The app failed me. Shute, phone dying, charger ripped in half. Is this a joke? Gotta go run and buy a new cable. Travel Tip: Always put your phone charger in a ziplock baggie to protect it. If you’re in a bind, charge your phone in airplane mode. It charges faster.

I hopped on the phone and the rep booked me back on my original flight with a new connector…in the back on the plane. Noooo. I went to the concierge and with one ask, she put me back in Economy Comfort. Bigger seats. Free movies. Travel Tip: Always ask.

Pacing the airport awaiting to board, I began to worry I would miss my connecting flight. I called the Delta rep again. Travel Tip: Use the phone in the terminal for no wait time. Otherwise press 0 to get to a live person on your cell.

I was told there were no later flights, so if I missed my connecting flight, I’d have to stay over night in Atlanta. Because of the mechanical issue, Delta would pay.

Okay, not awful. It’s out of my hands.

Travel Tip: Stress is practically unavoidable in an airport, unless you’re this monk. Prepare and you’ll instantly worry less.

 

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Just as I started to accept defeat, I heard the flight attendant call to board and just like that, I made my connecting flight.

Smooth sailing flying. I ate, listened to music, watched movies and slept. Travel tip: Wear a big hoodie. It’s perfect for sleeping on a plane.

Isn’t it the case that you go through struggles only to have it all glued together in the end?

Such is life as the End of history illusion goes. Travel Tip: Delta gave me bonus frequent flyer miles as an apology. Thanks Delta!

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The stress was almost needed to grant the feeling of catharsis in my comfy seat flying high.

Travel tip: Connect to GoGoInFlight Wifi to see you’re plane in real time flight.

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Gretta: “This really is a bit of a long shot, isn’t it?”
Dan Mulligan: “Absolutely! That’s when the magic happens.”
-Begin Again

Finally I arrived to my loving family just barely on the late eve of Thanksgiving. joeyalexalexis

Home for the holidays: defining comfort since… no longer living at home.

To quote Chris Brown, maybe it’s that Virginia in me.

Richmond to Charlottesville to West-by-Goodness-Virginia.family_time

If I had the gift of prophecy-
And all the knowledge-
And the faith to move the mountains
Even if I understood all of the mysteries-
If I didn’t have love
I’d be nothing
-Joni Mitchell

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When words fall short,
The pulse floods court.
Questions we know,
Careless we flow.
My puzzle piece,
Never to cease.

As the holidays tend to go, the MSG just started to guide me in slumber when it was time to fly back west.

Sometimes luck happens and you end up on the same flight as your family. Travel Tip: If your friends/family are first class flyers, you can enjoy some of their perks.

Cruise in file. A gift of style.

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I flew back to Atlanta with these two before connecting to my cross country flight, not to Costa Rica (although I do love that pura vida life).

Back to the Book, baby!

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Life is not merely being alive, but being well.”
-Marcus Valerius Martialis

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By giving people the power to share, we’re making the world more transparent.”
-Zuck

If you don’t toot your own horn, you’re liable to get stuck in traffic. So go ride the hump that is Wednesday and have a fabulous day.

How was your Thanksgiving holiday?

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