Happy new year, bet you have heard that a few times. Most people would like to start their new year off in a favorable fashion...you know, great New Years Eve party, starting all the New Years resolutions on the 1st and looking forward to all the promising things that the start of a new year brings...almost a clean slate so to speak. Mine was more of a "humbug new year" than a "happy new year".
Christmas was great, minus the usual drama that comes along when families get together over the holidays...I was all set to travel back to SD on the 31st, when my travel luck struck again!
It started with my US Airways flight from Austin-Phoenix-SD was delayed over 1 hour. I only had a 45 min connection in Phoenix if we where on time, so I knew that the possibility of making that connection was zero. Then the gate attendant came on the PA system and said that all passengers that had connecting flights in PHX could either stay in Austin and get re-booked for the morning flight, or fly to PHX and if they missed their connection, stay the night in PHX and get re-booked for the morning. Then she said, "except all passengers traveling to SD, there are 15 of you so they are going to hold the plane in PHX for you." lucky me, so I thought.
As I landed in PHX and made my way to gate 22, all 15 of us realized that there was no flight to SD..they did not hold it, nor even attempt to, it left right on time. The entire PHX airport basically shut down at 9:30PM, which left a few hundred stranded passengers on New Years Eve, all of which had big plans that night for sure. For the next 4.5 hours I waited in line at customer service to be re-booked, baggage claim, shuttle to the hotel, and then the 40 people long line to get checked in with 1 lady working the front desk. So yes, I watched the New Years celebrations while standing in line in a hotel lobby, tons of fun!
The next day the travel woes continued. As I went to the counter to check in, I was redirected to a waiting line that strangely enough had all 15 of us from the previous night. This was around 1pm. I stood in the exact same spot for over an hour and didn't budge. Come to find out, they canceled our re-booked flight to SD because of "crew rest" and couldn't get us even out of PHX until after 7pm, connecting in Ontario, getting into SD after 10pm! It wasn't even 2;15PM at this time, so I just walked over to Hertz, payed $288 !!!! picked up a car and drove the 5 hrs from PHX-SD. I got home around 9pm (which wasn't too much earlier than if I would have taken the later flight). Which in hindsight makes that $288 hurt even more. So 24hrs later than originally planned, I was home. Thanks US Airways! Happy New Year!
Im hoping that the rest of the year gets off to a much better start!