How to Deal With Flight Delays or Cancellations Like a Pro

Let’s paint the scenario for you. You’ve been planning this holiday for months. The accommodation is sorted, the transfer’s booked and you’ve even pre-ordered your ski rental. It’s been a tough few months at work but now it’s time for a little relaxation with the family. Arriving at the airport with plenty of time to spare, you stride into the terminal with confidence. Then it hits you, your flight’s delayed (or worse cancelled)! Now you’ve got a restless child, a frustrated partner and a ton of plans that need rearranging. Don’t panic! This is how to deal with flight delays and cancellations like a pro.

Don’t Stress Yourself Out

First thing’s first, don’t let yourself become stressed by the situation. If you’re not careful, this could give you a rotten start to your trip away. If you’re facing significant delays, it can be easy to become angry – this isn’t going to solve anything.

If your flight’s delayed, find out when it’s expected to depart. This will give you an idea of how long you’ve got to wait. This information can help you build a contingency plan.


Be the First to Know

When it comes to cancellations or delays, it pays to be the first in the know. Check your flight status before you leave home and make sure you sign up to flight status notifications. This will notify you immediately when something changes. The sooner you find out about flight disruption, the sooner you’ll be able to rearrange things.


Save Airline Numbers in Your Phone

When a flight is cancelled, everyone runs straight to the kiosk or asks for airline booking numbers. If you’re savvy, you’ll already have these numbers on your phone.

Get straight on the phone to the airline and get your flight rescheduled – avoid the frustration, anger and utter despair of queuing at the kiosk.


Understand the Full Process

After the flight rebooking queue comes the race for hotel accommodation vouchers. The quicker you act, the less time you’ll waste waiting around.


Get a Coffee and Build a Plan of Action

Once you’ve beaten the queues and got any relevant food or accommodation vouchers, it’s time to get a plan of action in place. You don’t want this issue to upset the rest of your holiday. Here are a few things to consider:

  • Do you need to notify the accommodation of your late arrival?
  • Contact your transfer company to discuss your journey to the resort
  • Did you arrange to pick up your hired skis at a specific time? Does this need rearranging?
  • Are you getting a connecting flight? Find out how this will be affected


A person in a hoodie using a phone at a table over coffee

Split Up the Tasks

If you’re in a group, split up and head off to do different tasks. There are quite a few crucial jobs you’ll need to do to organise yourself after a flight is severely delayed or cancelled. One person can rebook the flights while another contacts the transfer provider.

Splitting the workload will make for a far less stressful time.


Keep Your Luggage

If you’ve not yet put your luggage in hold, keep it with you. If you’re able to get your luggage back from hold, do it. This is especially important for cancellations or severe delays. There will be items in your luggage which you’re going to want or need while you wait.

You may also like: Flying with Skis: Cost Guide for 2017/18


Know What You Can Get for Free

In the event of cancellations or severe delays, an airline may give out free food vouchers, accommodation or more. Find out what you can get for free and take advantage.


Stay Online and in the Know

Keep up to date with the latest news. Make sure your phone is fully charged and always connected. As soon as any information comes through, you want to be in the know.

Entertain the Kids

This can be a parent’s worst nightmare. A bored child in a highly stressful environment. You’re going to need to be a little clever here.


If you keep the kids entertained, you’ll avoid strops, tantrums and general bad behaviour. Whether you take a visit to the arcade, buy them ice cream or give them free reign over the iPad – don’t let this be another strain on your already fleeting patience.


Entertain Yourself

This doesn’t have to be a nightmare – a lot of fun can be had in an airport. Here are a few ideas to keep your sanity intact.


A Guilt-Free Shopping Spree

Nothing says ‘treat yourself’ like countless hours stuck in an airport. Go on, make up for the time you’re missing on the slopes with some retail therapy. Who knows, you may actually end up enjoying this little bit of disruption.

Drinks with Friends

Right, we’re saying this with caution – you don’t want to be the inebriated mess on the flight. Having said that, flight delays are an ideal opportunity to have a drink or two with your friends or family. Airports usually have plenty of bars to choose from.

Find the Airport Lounges

Think airport lounges are only open to business or first class passengers? Think again! Most airports will allow you entry for a small fee. This is almost certainly worth paying for the added comfort you’ll enjoy while you wait.

You may also like: How to Sleep in Zurich Airport


Get Some Dinner

Go all out, make it a three-course meal if you can. Fancy having two desserts? You’ve got the time. Grabbing a decent meal is a great way of cutting down on waiting times. Who knows, you may even forget you’re 5 hours behind schedule.


Work Out and Relaxation

Some airports will have small spas or gyms on site. There’s likely to be a cost involved but we can’t think of a better way of killing time than a massage. If you’ve got some built up tension, hitting the gym will go a long way to calming you back down again.


Gather Information on Your Compensation Claim

Depending on the circumstances, you may be entitled to compensation. Gather all the vital information you can. It’s worth keeping hold of receipts and booking confirmations – you’ll need this later down the line.

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How Will You Get to the Resort?

Flying can be a stressful process – don’t make your journey to the resort just as difficult. Booking a ski transfer through Ski Transfer Finder will give you the peace of mind that your journey from the airport to resort will run as smoothly as possible. Our search tool will let you compare the best quotes from verified and approved transfer providers. Compare quotes and book your ski transfer here!