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NWA changes at last minute, now we have a flight time connection crunch - what would you do?

NWA changes at last minute, now we have a flight time connection crunch - what would you do?

Old Dec 23rd, 2002, 07:58 PM
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Amen to that!

Also, the airport area is not the safest part of town. Better to go dowtown or east to the Poplar-I240 area. Another alternative is Tunica which is less than 30 minutes drive. Radisson at the airport is a 5 iron from the end of the runway - too close and too loud.
Old Dec 23rd, 2002, 09:33 PM
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many people don't seem to realize that if your first leg is running late, and you don't have at least 20 minutes to make your connection, the airline is required to find another way to get you to your final destination.

This has happened to me several times. I don't deal with the gate personnel, but I call the airline 800 number and tell them that I'm not getting on a plane that won't make my connection. They accomodate by finding me a seat on another airline (at no extra charge) - sometimes even on nonstop flights, and once even in first class since that was the only seat available.

Southwest and a few other airlines don't have "agreements" with other airlines so you're out of luck if you miss, or are likely to miss, a connection.
Old Dec 24th, 2002, 05:45 AM
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That is not the case; they must get you there within 3 hours of your scheduled arrival time, I believe, and this does not apply at all if delays are due to weather. Also, they can only get you a seat if there are some available.
Old Dec 24th, 2002, 09:55 AM
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John-- Worse case scenerio- You have to overnite in Memphis---FABULOUS BBQ restarants!! LOL

Just trying to lighten up the situation-

By the way, the airlines do NOT hold planes anymore- so just ask the stewardess to have pilot phone ahead for you and ask stewardess to let you off before all the others- sometimes they do,sometimes they don't/
Old Dec 24th, 2002, 07:16 PM
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True. They will definitely not hold a flight for you. I flew NWA over the summer and even though 7 of us were connecting to a NWA commuter (from NWA), they did not hold the plane. We were late (due to NWA) by about 7 minutes and still they sent the plane off without us.

I sometimes ask the flight attendant to call ahead to my next gate and tell them I'm on my way. Sometimes they do and sometimes they they don't.
Old Dec 24th, 2002, 11:39 PM
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Sorry x but we're talking about missed connections here, not late or delayed single flights.

If you have a connecting flight to catch, and your FIRST leg is delayed so that you will not have enough time to make your connection, the airline is required to find you new routing. They CANNOT force you to take your scheduled first leg if you ask to be re-routed. This also goes for bad weather situations, though they are not required to get you on the NEXT available routing if the delay is weather related. Usually when weather is the problem, other airlines are also having delays so the solution of routing you onto another airline doesn't help.
Old Dec 25th, 2002, 04:34 PM
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Although not directily on topic, to all those extolling the wonders of the "new" DTW, listen to my tale of woe regarding connecting flights.

Last August, I was connecting through DTW on a trip to Anchorage. The flight was diverted to Saginaw due to weather conditions. Although we got to DTW in time, my seat had been give away and I was stuck there for 36 hours!

Since I was now standby for every flight, and they would change gates on the spur of the moment, large groups of people were forced to race from gate to gate, some taking the tram, others on foot. It was one of the most demeaning experiences of my life.

After I had missed the last flight out for the evening, I was astonished to learn that NW would make NO accomodation for a bed for me overnight. Only after shamelessly pleading with a supervisor did I get a discounted room.

I vowed at that point that I would do my best NEVER to fly NW and/or through Detroit again.
Old Dec 25th, 2002, 06:35 PM
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Sorry that you had such an experience. From my job I've got a few million miles now and have had similar experiences on most US carriers and many foreign ones too. If I foreswore them all I'd now be reduced to walking.

Your experience is unfortunate and I hope that you have written to NW's CEO. Perhaps this seems futile but really it is important.

DTW seems not to have been the real problem; just bad weather and bad handling from the airline personnel you met.
Old Dec 25th, 2002, 06:43 PM
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Sounds like you are limiting yourselves to only the next connecting flight? Why not connect in Memphis but the flight AFTER the 35 minute one? There must be more than one flight per day? I would never leave less than an hour, two is better, and you are correct to be concerned about weather in Detroit - you just never know.
Old Dec 25th, 2002, 10:48 PM
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a, you make a good point, weather conditions, ie a single sighting of a funnel cloud, played a large part in my DTW troubles. Nevertheless, I do think that the configuration of the Detroit terminal is unfortunate. And I certainly had plenty of time to explore it.

As NW was busily switching gates from one end of the terminal to the other, we would race for a tram stop (there are only 3) get deposited and the one closest to our new gate, race to the new to find that the gate had been switched again but the signage had not.

I did write to NW outlining these and other woes, and received a $125 vouncher. But that didn't even cover my expenses for the day I lost in Alaska.
Old Jan 7th, 2003, 07:16 AM
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Just in case anyone was curious, I know after I read these posts I always enjoy a follow-up...
We made the connection with time to spare, the first leg of our flight actually arrived in Memphis 35 minutes early, so we were very lucky. It could have gone either way, and we were both of the mentality that if Memphis was it for the night then so be it, we were so happy to be away together, we could have gone and had a great dinner somewhere, perhaps some ribs. We always CHOOSE to make the best of things, sounds sappy but look at the alternative, right?
With that being said, I do have to tell you a both amusing but frustrating story. On our way back from Jamaica we connected back through Memphis again. On the way to our gate, we witnessed a couple on the same concourse literally screaming at the ticket agent because she would not let them on their flight (their plane was indeed still there, the jetway still against the plane (I thought of the above poster, Lynn with her USAir story) I felt for them, but my wife and I just shook our heads at each other, I mean this guy went balistic, he actually ran over to the window closest to where the pilots would see him and pounded so hard on the glass so hard I thought it would break. This was a fifty something fella that should have known better. It you could have seen this guy and his wife both screaming at the top of their lungs carrying on like 3 year olds. I mean I totally get their frustration but man, is it really worth it? Like they would EVEN LET him get on the a flight carrying on like that. If I was that little ticket agent I would have called security and had his sorry, overreacting ass hauled away. What I have learned is that life (and trips for that matter) are what YOU make of them. There are definitely worst things than going to have a nice meal in Memphis for the evening.
Old Jan 7th, 2003, 07:26 AM
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Nice story John and glad you made your connecting flight.

These days, if you don't have a laid back attitude about flying it is easy to go ballistic.

Weather is a factor any time of year. Snow in the winter, Thunderstorms in spring, summer, and fall. You just have to roll with the punches.
Old Jan 7th, 2003, 07:45 AM
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John: Thanks for the update - I was wondering how it all turned out. I guess we can only hope that other couple wasn't trying to get somewhere in an emergency, but either way it seems like there should have been a better way of getting your point across.
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