What to do when your flight gets delayed or cancelled
It’s something that all travellers unanimously dread – being delayed, or worse, experiencing a flight cancellation. The actual delay is bad, but what’s worse is the feeling of powerlessness and unexpectedness of it all; you can plan your airport trip meticulously, check in online and make sure that you’re at your gate hours before it even opens, but even then you’re at the mercy of a lengthy airport delay.
However, just because you can’t predict a delay, it doesn’t mean that there’s nothing that you can do about it. Quite the opposite, in fact – there are a number of different options at your disposal that can turn a second-rate delay into luxurious free time.
Ask for an upgrade
If your flight is delayed or cancelled, speak to the airline in question and ask if they can upgrade you into business or even first class on another flight to get you to your destination faster. Often, upgrading passengers is a more cost-effective option rather than certain other alternatives. While not every airline will agree to this, it doesn’t hurt to ask – and if it does work out, you’ll be sipping champagne and eating caviar rather than waiting six hours for an economy class seat.
Airlines are obliged to pay compensation for missed flights or delays of longer than three hours if the airline in question is at fault. This isn’t debatable; whether it’s a flight cancelled by British Airways or one by Ryanair, passenger compensation is a right enshrined by the law. And it could be to the tune of €600, so it’s really worth enquiring about. After you’ve confirmed compensation, how you use that money is up to you, but airports are usually flush with different luxurious methods of entertainment, such as –
Treat yourself to a massage
Many airports contain high-end spas and parlours. Instead of stressing out over your delayed flight and possible missed connections, a good alternative is to check in to a spa and check out of your worries. Whether it’s a manicure or a full-body hot stone massage, visiting a spa is a solid luxurious alternative to sitting in a food court and constantly checking the departure board.
Spend the night in a luxurious hotel
If your delay is long enough that it warrants spending an entire night in the airport, consider checking into a hotel instead. Generally airlines will put you up in a hotel on their dime, but these hotels tend to be on the cheaper end of the spectrum. The good news is that there are always decently luxurious hotels usually a short ride from the airport. Wait out your delay in the lap of luxury rather than in stiff sheets and hard beds of an inferior hotel.
Check into an airport lounge
If you don’t have enough time to check into a hotel then consider checking into an airport lounge instead. Airport lounges offer you a luxurious sanctuary from the hustle and bustle of the airport terminal, and are also a prime location for enjoying champagne and other delicious food. Speak to your airline if you’re delayed and they may throw you an airport lounge pass for free, or simply buy a pass and enjoy all of the amenities on offer.