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Thanksgiving Travel to Test Airlines’ Mettle as Demand Returns

Are you flying over the holidays? Please use this thread to comment. Lots of people want to take a trip but many are weary of the current state of airlines.

I have a terrible feeling that airlines are booking way more passengers than they can handle.

I’d like to hear first hand experiences of those flying over thanksgiving week so I can determine if I should do so over Christmas.

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by Anonymousreply 42November 24, 2021 7:11 PM

Every flight I've taken this year has been packed.

As always with the holidays I would count on the airport being really crowded and arrive to go through security with plenty of time.

by Anonymousreply 1November 22, 2021 4:55 PM

I’m thinking it’s going to be way worse than r1.

I predicting a total meltdown of the airlines.

by Anonymousreply 2November 22, 2021 5:11 PM

I've flown a few times since I was fully vaxxed in May.

The airlines are insane for not requiring proof of vax to fly. Masking is not enforced, both within terminals and on flights. (Hell, even TSA agents don't properly mask -- I thought they were there to keep us "safe"?)

COVID is going to have the merriest holiday season of all.

by Anonymousreply 3November 22, 2021 5:13 PM

[Quote]The airlines are insane for not requiring proof of vax to fly.

They would love to, but given how antivaxx a portion of Americans are it would be a lot of drama. You'd have a bunch of Republican leaders blasting the airlines.

by Anonymousreply 4November 22, 2021 5:19 PM

Under the Obama admin, the airlines were forced to get their act together. There were big changes put in place and it made a huge difference in flying. It was night and day.

Were those changes not permanent? It’s all gone back to the Wild West. The problem is the airlines do this crap on purpose. They book flights that they know they cannot complete.

And then they just say whoops, we had no idea!

by Anonymousreply 5November 22, 2021 5:52 PM

Best to always avoid connecting flights when possible, makes things so much more complicated if something goes wrong with your flight.

by Anonymousreply 6November 22, 2021 6:19 PM

Southwest had a major operational meltdown Columbus Day weekend. American had a major operational meltdown Halloween weekend. Why would any sane person think the airlines have miraculously solved their long term operating problems in just a few short weeks?

by Anonymousreply 7November 22, 2021 6:24 PM

Watch out for the fights and Americans behaving badly.

Biden needs to mandate vaxx certs and masks for air travel. The airlines don’t care about safety, only money. So this is the governments responsibility to make sure it doesn’t undercut its own pandemic efforts.

People are idiots. You can’t leave anything to them.

by Anonymousreply 8November 22, 2021 6:24 PM

[quote]Biden needs to mandate vaxx certs and masks for air travel.

Masks are already mandated. The problem is, the mandate isn't really enforced.

by Anonymousreply 9November 22, 2021 6:32 PM

Deplorables are spreading Covid all over the airways. Be sure to avoid them. Stay 6 feet away because they don’t believe in vaccines or liberal hogwash like science or modern medicine. God knows what they are carrying around these days.

by Anonymousreply 10November 22, 2021 6:34 PM

This is going to turn into a total pig's breakfast. Flights are going to get cancelled, planes are going to make emergency landing because of all the assholes packed together, and Covid21 is going to bite everyone in the ass. You couldn't pay me to get on a commercial flight for any reason.

by Anonymousreply 11November 22, 2021 6:35 PM

Flying during Thanksgiving week always sucks. Why would you expect it to be any different this year.

by Anonymousreply 12November 22, 2021 6:37 PM

[quote]Deplorables are spreading Covid all over the airways. Be sure to avoid them. Stay 6 feet away because they don’t believe in vaccines or liberal hogwash like science or modern medicine. God knows what they are carrying around these days.

It's impossible to avoid them once you're on the plane.

by Anonymousreply 13November 22, 2021 6:39 PM

The airlines are out of control and seem to be unmoored to the obama era reforms. This thanksgiving will be the apex of years of mismanagement and shoestring budgets due to profit hogging at the top.

by Anonymousreply 14November 22, 2021 6:40 PM

I just returned to Chicago from a short trip to Palm Springs. People on the flights were totally on edge. My return flight was delayed for an hour due to needing a tire change, and the old people were freaking out. "Someone's lying to us!" "You're so disorganized that the luggage isn't even loaded yet!" (The luggage wasn't loaded because people were still changing to other flights due to the delay.) I think the combination of the tension from wearing masks and the conspiracy theories these old folks hear on Fox News has pushed them over the brink. At least people were wearing their masks (except for one person who was promptly ratted out by a nearby stranger.)

by Anonymousreply 15November 22, 2021 6:47 PM

Masks are normally enforced on flights in my experience, but since people are allowed to remove them to eat or drink it doesn't really mean anything.

by Anonymousreply 16November 22, 2021 6:48 PM

Thrice-vaccinated eldergay here. My first airplane trips in many months were during October and November.

I have no other trips scheduled, and if I can help it, it will stay that way.

Unexplained cancellations, delays, terrible service (even in first class), noncompliant and rude "fellow" passengers, and the like.

Not only was it "not fun," it was affirmatively awful. No thank you.

by Anonymousreply 17November 22, 2021 6:49 PM

Annoying passengers, bad customer service and flights getting delayed was normal even before covid.

Welcome to traveling. The days of traveling being some sort of glamorous experience have long, long been over.

by Anonymousreply 18November 22, 2021 6:53 PM

They stress everybody out with the security and all the parking and lugging around bags.

I think if they made the whole experience less stressful then people would chill out.

With today’s technology, people should be able to fly with less crap to deal with.

by Anonymousreply 19November 22, 2021 7:00 PM

The seats are too small (obviously). I think it contributes to passenger behavior.

by Anonymousreply 20November 22, 2021 7:03 PM

Yes. They are cramming people into these tiny doll seats row after row and then will hogtie you if you dare complain.

by Anonymousreply 21November 22, 2021 7:07 PM

Best of luck to air travelers.

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by Anonymousreply 22November 22, 2021 7:29 PM

I'm taking Amtrak.

by Anonymousreply 23November 22, 2021 9:41 PM

I'm taking Amcrash.

by Anonymousreply 24November 22, 2021 10:02 PM

Hi Liza r24!

by Anonymousreply 25November 22, 2021 10:02 PM

Wednesday (the day before Thanksgiving for our friends outside the US) is always one of the worst days to travel, but this year will be worse. Few people traveled this time last year due to the pandemic but this year lots of people are traveling. The airlines are short staffed - from gate agents to flight attendants to pilots to baggage handlers. TSA checkpoints will see lines out to the sidewalk. Not only are they short staffed but there's an extra step this year - asking people to pull down their mask during the ID check. Concessions will also be backed up - too many customers and not enough cashiers. And where I live, there's a huge shortage of taxis to take people to / from the airport. Stay home.

by Anonymousreply 26November 22, 2021 10:28 PM

I've flown about a half dozen times in the last year and a half. All has been uneventful.

by Anonymousreply 27November 22, 2021 10:35 PM

[Quote]Stay home.

Mary r26, some people have places to be. Anyone traveling for the holidays knows it is going to be an unpleasant experience, it isn't the end of the world. You just deal with it.

by Anonymousreply 28November 22, 2021 11:16 PM

Relax. It’ll be fine.

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by Anonymousreply 29November 22, 2021 11:22 PM

An associate today says her friend flying from CA to Oregon for Thanksgiving was told to arrive at airport 3 HOURS before flight. RIDICULOUS!

by Anonymousreply 30November 22, 2021 11:46 PM

If you're traveling, keep your cellphones at hand to record all the entertaining airport meltdowns.

Since the department stores cracked down on Black Friday, there haven't been enough videos of people going crazy over Thanksgiving weekend.

by Anonymousreply 31November 23, 2021 1:13 AM

I look forward to the meltdowns ...

by Anonymousreply 32November 23, 2021 10:15 AM
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by Anonymousreply 33November 24, 2021 10:09 AM

R6--- Good fuckin luck booking direct flights (And everyone already knows your helpful tip.)

I bought a ticket SF to New Orleans last October for Mardi Gras. United and Southwest were the only two airlines that flew direct. Then United canceled their direct flight, so I bought a ticket on SW. Within a couple weeks I was notified my nonstop flight was canceled and I'd be changing planes in blah blah. Then I was notified my return was no longer nonstop and I was changing planes in another airport. After each notification I had to rearrange the flights for timing and where I preferred to change planes. Then I ended up canceling and not going when it got close to the date.

Then I had til October to use the one way ticket I'd paid for. It wasn't worth a lot, so I exchanged it for a RT to Long Beach.. Well, both those flights got rescheduled to send me to Las Vegas and Phoenix for stops. Again, had to get back to the reservations people to reschedule for timing and to schoose a different nonstop flight.

It was like being a god damed travel agent.

by Anonymousreply 34November 24, 2021 1:49 PM

I gave up flying during Thanksgiving long ago. When everyone is restricted to a short few days, the airports are nuts.

I see family over the Christmas holiday--there's far more flexibility because it usually extends two weeks.

by Anonymousreply 35November 24, 2021 1:56 PM

NBC had a clip last night that said Thanksgiving wasn’t actually the busiest time for flying. Hard to believe. I think the busiest was around the 4th of July.

by Anonymousreply 36November 24, 2021 2:10 PM

I'm at an airport in the DC area now, and it really isn't that bad. The lots closest to the airport were full, but I was able to easily reserve Economy parking a few days ago and this morning there were hundreds of free spaces. Also, I was one of 4 people on the shuttle and it took maybe 15 minutes to get through security.

Honestly, in terms of activity, it's similar to a pre-pandemic summer weekday. I'm almost positive it's not as bad as flying the day before Thanksgiving in 2019.

by Anonymousreply 37November 24, 2021 2:21 PM

I flew last saturday for a week at my sister's place near SF. I was surprised how empty the airport was

by Anonymousreply 38November 24, 2021 2:24 PM

WaPo is reporting Wed AM no parking spaces at airport garages and lots, since people are driving to airports instead of taking shuttles and cabs (to avoid COVID). No logic: I won't share a van with people, but I will sit next to them on the plane.

by Anonymousreply 39November 24, 2021 2:59 PM

If you plan far enough in advance, there are some real bargain first class fares available these days. Chicago to Boston was 434 a few weeks ago. No the onboard experience is bare bones, but you get a lot more room. The far more important thing is if there is delay or cancellation you are near the top of the list when it comes to rebooking etc. The top tier frequent flyers and people on full fare tickets will be at the top, but that is very small group. Also if you can buy a day pass to the Admirals Club etc. a godsend if you are delayed and again more importantly is there agents won’t have a huge line and those agents really know how tie work to get people rebooked.

by Anonymousreply 40November 24, 2021 3:08 PM

I'd stick hot needles in my eyes before I ever get on a plane during the holidays

by Anonymousreply 41November 24, 2021 6:49 PM

R40 is right. I was able to upgrade to first class for $90 (including taxes). For some reason, American Airlines only serves alcohol in first class, so it made my flight a lot more pleasant.

by Anonymousreply 42November 24, 2021 7:11 PM
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