Travel karma

by Ginger on January 7, 2009

in Random

Let me tell you a story…a story about traveling the friendly (?) skies during the holidays…a story that’s so unbelievable, many will think I’m making it up.

We got to the airport entirely too early (due to a fluke with traffic, not having to deal with luggage or the security line due to the kinds of tickets we purchased), so we had some time to kill. As we’re sitting there, enjoying our Starbucks, we hear an announcement:

“This flight is overbooked. We’re looking for passengers who have flexible travel plans who would be willing to take the next flight out in exchange for $300 travel vouchers.”

Ok, so you guys saw that one of my goals for 2009 is to travel. Um, free travel vouchers? Sign me up! We had a 2 1/2 hour layover in Dallas anyway, so I figured if they could get us into Dallas in time to make our connection, we were golden.

Sure enough, the next flight out is only 1 hour later, getting us into Dallas in plenty  of time for our original connection. Done, and done. 2 vouchers sitting in my purse while we enjoy a nice bloody mary and some lunch and wait for our flight.

But it gets better (seriously!). About 30 minutes before our new flight leaves, while we’re waiting to board, we hear them call our name, and ask to come to the gate. They ask us if we would want to be bumped again for another set of vouchers! But because we don’t want to screw things up for the people picking us up in San Antonio, we decline. So the nice gate agent says, “oh that’s ok, here are your new tickets then.” We look down…

We’ve been bumped up to first class so that they can use our seats in coach.

Seriously, I’d been expecting travel Armageddon, it being the holidays and all, and I get money from the airline and first class accommodations?  What alternate travel universe did we wander into?

Of course, on the trip back, I was convinced we had used all our travel karma up and that we would have nothing but problems. And things appeared that way…our flight out on Sunday night got delayed so long they cancelled it for us, and put us on a plane the next day. Monday we arrived so early we had to kill 2 hours in the San Antonio airport (they weren’t sure they “really” had us booked in seats on Sunday night, so we had to arrive early to make sure). But then, we arrive in Dallas for our connecting flight. And as we’re sitting there, hand to my heart, we hear:

“This flight is overbooked. We’re looking for passengers who have flexible travel plans who would be willing to take the next flight out in exchange for $300 travel vouchers.”

I kept asking N.C., “are we being punked? Did we hit some alternate universe?” I mean, I was dreading this trip knowing all the crap that has been going on in the airline industry, and they kept….giving us stuff!

Guys, we ended up that trip with 4 travel vouchers, a meal voucher, first class for one leg of the trip, no luggage costs, bypassing lines at security and at the gate, and all it cost us was waiting time.  I may never have another good flight experience again (having completely used up any and all travel karma), but man, it was worth it!

Sarah January 7, 2009 at 11:36 am

That. Is. Awesome!!!
Congrats I am so jealous and happy for you.

Sarah´s last blog post..The One Where I Can Walk Like a Penguin

Ally January 7, 2009 at 12:43 pm

I am so jealous!!!! That was very nice of you though to give up your seats for someone else, so I think that’s why you hit the karma jackpot on the way home again 🙂

Ally´s last blog post..Holiday Recap Part II: Christmas!

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