I usually drive to where I am going on vacation but for this quick trip, I decided to fly. I ended up with delayed flights, then there were cancelled flights, and stranded at the connecting airport and ended up missing my brother’s wedding. Not to mention missing what was going to be my relaxing weekend getaway in a very secluded mountain area.
In January my brother announced that he was going to get married on Valentine’s Day and asked if I would come up for the wedding. I decided to go up for the wedding but this time I was only going for a long weekend so I decided to fly up instead of driving. A big mistake!
My flight leaving Ontario airport ended up delayed due to bad weather in San Francisco, where I was to connect to a flight to Eureka Ca. I knew that I would miss my connecting flight. However, when I got into San Francisco airport I found out that they had cancelled my connecting flight and all flights up to the 10:30pm.
I was on the stand-by list for the 10:30pm flight that night. When it was time to board the plane for the 10:30 flight they kept delaying the boarding and finally cancelled it. They said it was due to weather but later I found out it was due to not having a flight crew. Therefore, I was to fend for myself at the San Francisco airport until the next morning.
The airlines did not offer a hotel or food vouchers that normally I believe they should do. I did not want to spend $100-$200 a night for a few hours at a hotel the going rate in San Francisco these days. Therefore, I spent a wonderful night in a hard plastic chair and got to watch some very unusual people. I was able to fall asleep and then a very loud-recorded message woke me up.
The next morning I was on stand-by for the 6:00am flight and booked on the 8:15am flight to Eureka. Either one would get me to Eureka in time for my brother’s wedding at 1:00pm. Well guess what both flights ended up cancelled. I was on stand-by yet again for the 11:15am flight and I could still make the wedding. I would not be able to be cleaned-up for the wedding but at least I would get to be there for it.
I boarded the 11:15am flight and we took off for Eureka. We were almost there and the pilot came over the loud speaker to say that the weather had turned bad. However, he would circle the airport for 10-15 minutes to see if it would clear up if not he would have to go to Redding to refuel and then head back to San Francisco. You guessed it; we circled and headed for Redding then back to San Francisco. Now all of the flights that were cancelled to Eureka I was told was due to weather but what it really was the ground equipment used to land in bad weather was not working and had not been working for over three weeks!
Once back at San Francisco I was informed that, I could get on a flight to Eureka the following day. To which I replied I have already missed my brother’s wedding, which was the reason for going in the first place. I then told them to get me on a flight back home to Ontario. My luck was still holding and all of the flights back home that day and the next had been over booked and I could not even go stand-by.
During this time, my husband had been watching the flight I was on, it went off the radar and given a message to call the airlines for information, and he knew something was wrong. He was in a panic since he could not reach me by my cell phone and was beginning to think that the plane had crashed during the storm.
When I was finally able to call my husband to tell him, what was going on he was on the phone with the airlines as well. He was finally able to get me a flight home that I was told was full. I will not tell you how he was able to do that but I was very grateful that he did.
My luck was still with me and my luggage did not follow me around from flight to flight. I had to place a lost luggage report so that they would start looking for it and return it to me. Two days later, we got a call from the Eureka airport asking if I was going to arriving in Eureka soon that my bag was waiting for me there. To which my husband told them no, that I was back at home.
Two days after that I got a call, they would be bringing my bag to me around 9:30pm. The next day I went to unpack the bag and I noticed that everything on one end was wet. Therefore, I guess my bag had been sitting upright in the rain all weekend long.
So now, you know my vacation nightmare! I do not plan to fly anytime soon!
Take a carry-on bag with you and in this bag take the following items for your comfort and well-being.
- 1. All needed medications
- 2. Snacks
- 3. Extra change of clothes
- 4. Tooth brush and tooth paste
- 5. Hair brush or comb
- 6. Make-up
- 7. Jacket or sweater
- 8. Something to keep you busy-book, Kindle, iPad, and camera
- 9. Personal hygiene items
- 10. Extra money for food and drinks