Congratulations! You’ve read our Finding Flights post and found a great deal on airfare! With all the excitement, it’s easy to overlook the little details before you confirm your flight reservation. Before you hit that “purchase” button, stop and think about the following suggestions:
When it comes time to enter in all your personal information into the system, always, always, ALWAYS double check the information. It can be easy for numbers and times to jumble together when scanning through. Slow down and take a few extra minutes to make sure all the times and dates are correct. We suggest saying everything out loud so you don’t miss a thing!
When choosing your flight times and dates, never overlook time difference. If it’s showing your flight departing New York at 12pm and arriving in Chicago at 12:30pm, that does not mean your flight is only 3o minutes long. There is a one hour time difference. This is especially important to remember if you’re making plans for the same day as your arrival.
If you’re traveling to a new destination, make sure you know where the airport is. Sometimes, when there is more than one airport in the city, you can fly into one and depart out of the other. This goes hand-in-hand with double checking the details. On some occasions, you’ll have to switch airports during a layover, which leads us to our next point.
When selecting a flight with a layover, make sure you’ll have enough time to exit the plane and find your next flight in time. Most flights close their doors 10 minutes before the scheduled takeoff. I’ve been on a flight that had a 45 minutes layover scheduled, which seemed realistic. However, when the plane landed we sat on the runway for 30 minutes waiting to find an open gate. I wish I could say I got off the plane right away, but we all know how unbelievably slow people are when exiting a plane. Not only did I miss my connecting flight, but I had to wait for another departing flight. Leave room for delays.
When reading our Airport Anxiety post, you read about different ways to purchase your luggage. Know how many bags you’ll be checking in and carrying on before you purchase the flight. Not only will this save you money, but it will also save you time at the airport. You can always purchase your luggage online later, but sometimes life get’s the best of us and we forget. Take a few extra minutes to purchase it now.
When you purchase your flight, you will be asked to select a seat (unless you’re flying with Southwest). Have an idea ahead of time about your seat preferences such as, middle, isle, window, etc. Pay close attention to which seat you select because some seats have a fee attached. It’s no secret that the closer you sit to the front, the faster you’ll get off the plane, or the emergency exit row will give you more leg room. If you’re flying with someone and both want a window seat, consider sitting in different rows. If you’re flying with a group, this can get tricky. This is all about preference.
Last but not least, if you plan on having someone drop you off at the airport, make sure your dates and times work with your driver. When we were in our long distance days, we had to make sure someone could take and pick us up from the airport. We could never book a flight for a Monday afternoon because everyone was either working or in class. If you plan on paying to park, then you have a wider range of times.
After you’ve considered all your options, it’s time for the exciting part! Booking your flight!
Enjoy your flight,
Ash & Tay