Well – that’s never good.
I flew to St. Louis Feb. 1 to welcome a new employee to our St. Louis office. There were rumblings of a winter storm and some encouragement to avoid “unnecessary travel.”
Eh…heard that before in the Midwest. And this was a new employee who would arrive at our office without a welcoming committee (most people are still working from home). I decided to risk it.
On a Tuesday, I boarded at 8:30 a.m. and arrived at in St. Louis at 10:45 a.m.
By noon, my return flight had been cancelled and I had been rebooked on the Thursday flight back on Feb. 3. My original return flight was scheduled to leave St. Louis for home on Feb. 2 at 9:30 p.m.
Oh. I guess this storm IS a big deal.
I didn’t want to stay an extra day (and an extra hotel room), especially with the uncertainty around how big this storm was really going to be. As the day went on, the storm was getting nastier.
I ended up returning home the same day – booking the late flight that had me scheduled to arrive home at 11:45 p.m. I’ve done the “there and back” but I prefer not to. But I didn’t want to get stuck…
I arrived at the airport to find out of 39 flights out, 27 were cancelled. That’s 70%! I should clarify that most of those flights were for the next day, but it’s still unnerving to see “Cancelled” blanketing an airport departure screen!
Mine was still a go – but I was constantly checking to make sure the status didn’t change.
I did make it home that night, and glad I did. Based on reports, I actually would not have gotten home until Friday, instead of Thursday. When I arrived back home at 11:30, Ii thought I could take an Uber home. Denied. I got a message that said “there are no available rides in your area.” I guess Uber drivers don’t want to be in a snowstorm either!
I do enjoy the text alerts from airlines – many of which reach travelers before the airport can make the change on their end. That’s a good use of technology. I also like the texts I get when arriving in an airport that tells me where my next flight is and how long it will take to get to that gate. Another #win for technology!