Friday, February 25, 2011

The trip that wasn't

I didn't make it to Orlando today :(

I'd been really looking forward to going to Orlando to hang out with my friends; I was so excited that I had a hard time sleeping last night. Since this is February I knew that there was a chance that the weather might wreak havoc with my flight. Which it did.

While we were getting snow, the Eastern Seaboard was getting rain and gusty winds which made takeoff and landing quite treacherous. As a result, many flights were canceled or delayed going into and out of Newark. The plane I was taking to Newark was an hour and a half late coming in. I saw that there was no way I'd make my connection to Orlando so I made arrangements to take a later connection.

About an hour later, we were notified that the weather had somehow caused a mechanical problem on the plane and they weren't sure whether or not the plane would go out. They had two agents rebooking people but there were a lot of people and the agents were slow finding flights and making arrangements for baggage to be taken off the plane. It wasn't the agents' fault that they were so slow: they lacked managerial support and a coordinator to make sure that all the things that had to be done got done. The two were constantly interrupted by other passengers and staff as well.

After standing in line for an hour and a half, during which they announced that the plane would fly sometime today but they didn't know when, I got up to talk to the agent. There was no way that I could get to Orlando today; the best she could offer me was to fly to either Houston or Newark tonight and to Orlando tomorrow morning. Since the problem was weather-related they weren't giving out hotel vouchers so I would be crashing in the airport overnight.  It occurred to me later that I could have tried to reach a friend who was in NYC who couldn't go to Orlando until tomorrow. Then I realized that I don't have her number and if I weren't able to reach her, I would have been stuck in the airport anyway.

I can't crash in the airport. I can't sleep by myself in public and I was already exhausted from not getting enough sleep the night before and there's no way I would have had a fun time there if I was that tired. I guess I could have tried to stay in a hotel but I don't know where the airport hotels are or how much they cost or anything and I just didn't have it in me to figure all that out. I was exhausted and frustrated.

So I came home. I'm tired and disappointed that things didn't work out. I'd wanted to go but it seems that the universe is conspiring against me. I have no idea what will happen with my airline tickets as they're non-refundable and I booked them on expedia. I hope they'll issue me a voucher for future use but I suspect that they might not do that. We'll see.

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