Advice!! Weekend trip and all these flight cancellations?

TeamSy

DIS Veteran
Joined
Nov 23, 2013
We are surprising kids with a weekend trip to Disney end of month but have been getting nervous with all these flight cancellations!!

If our flight there gets cancelled and we can't get out same day it's not really worth the trip as its only 2 nights/3 days (we have a 6am flight booked and a late flight home).

We made sure to buy trip insurance (although to be honest the insurance itself is so confusing I don't even know what we got).

So amid all these last minute flight cancellations, and in effort to plan and be prepared, how do you deal with this?

A lot of our stuff is refundable but only up until a certain point so if we get to the airport and find out our flight has been delayed we can't cancel hotel, disney tickets, car rental, etc. So would we turn to insurance? Would we ask airline for refund and try to get out same day on another carrier if that would even be possible but pay out of pocket? If at that point it's even affordable.

Anyone have experience with this? We aren't telling kids about it mostly because we fear flight cancellation and don't want them to be disappointed but I guess it would be too late once we're at the airport and it happens.
 

SleeplessInTO

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jan 22, 2019
I check on how the same flight is doing leading up to my trip. If they’re all getting canceled the week of, then the odds are my flight is getting canceled too. :( not an exact science of course.

And I pray.
 

sam_gordon

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jun 26, 2010
I check on how the same flight is doing leading up to my trip. If they’re all getting canceled the week of, then the odds are my flight is getting canceled too. :( not an exact science of course.

And I pray.
Yup. That's about all you can do. IMO, trying to get out on another airline the same day, *IF* they have seats, will cost more than what you get from your refund, possibly a lot more. Since driving isn't a legitimate option, is there somewhere else you can go close by for a "surprise" trip. No, it won't be Disney, but could be somewhere else fun.
 

disny_luvr

DIS Veteran
Joined
Aug 7, 2008
We flew down to Disney for a short trip in April to see our sons march in the MK with their marching band. I was a nervous wreck about our flights because, like you, if they were canceled there really was no point in going. It’s about a 15 hour drive for us and it just wasn’t feasible to go if the flights got canceled. Thankfully, all was good, but here was what I was thinking:

We flew American out of Philly and like a PP said, I watched our flight for about two weeks before our trip. It was never canceled but it was delayed. I found a flight on United that left super early the morning after we were to fly out. We never ended up doing this, but we were considering purchasing refundable tickets on this flight in case our flight the previous night was canceled. Had our flight been canceled at all in the two weeks leading up to our trip, we would have bought the tickets on United as back up. When we purchased our AA flights, I paid a little more to get the trip insurance which would’ve given me my money back had the flight been canceled. We only packed two carry ons so we didn’t have to worry about our luggage if our flight was canceled.

As far as our package with Disney, my plan there was to call them and explain the situation if we had a canceled flight. I was going to try to push my trip back a few weeks/months and then just cancel it a few days later.

I’d definitely have a backup plan. Flying right now is very risky, but hopefully you’ll have no problems.
 

lorimt

Mouseketeer
Joined
Jan 17, 2015
Because you booked an early flight out there, you are more likely to be able to get a flight out later that day if something happens with your original flight. Getting home is a little riskier since you are taking a late flight. I would have a plan B if your flight home is cancelled but there’s not much else you can do but hope it all goes well and try not to stress about it (I know this is easier said than done). We flew the weekend of Memorial Day and again two weeks ago with zero issues. We actually had some of the fastest security/baggage claim experiences on a few of the flights so sometimes it does work out. I hope you have the perfect trip!
 

TeamSy

DIS Veteran
Joined
Nov 23, 2013
We flew down to Disney for a short trip in April to see our sons march in the MK with their marching band. I was a nervous wreck about our flights because, like you, if they were canceled there really was no point in going. It’s about a 15 hour drive for us and it just wasn’t feasible to go if the flights got canceled. Thankfully, all was good, but here was what I was thinking:

We flew American out of Philly and like a PP said, I watched our flight for about two weeks before our trip. It was never canceled but it was delayed. I found a flight on United that left super early the morning after we were to fly out. We never ended up doing this, but we were considering purchasing refundable tickets on this flight in case our flight the previous night was canceled. Had our flight been canceled at all in the two weeks leading up to our trip, we would have bought the tickets on United as back up. When we purchased our AA flights, I paid a little more to get the trip insurance which would’ve given me my money back had the flight been canceled. We only packed two carry ons so we didn’t have to worry about our luggage if our flight was canceled.

As far as our package with Disney, my plan there was to call them and explain the situation if we had a canceled flight. I was going to try to push my trip back a few weeks/months and then just cancel it a few days later.

I’d definitely have a backup plan. Flying right now is very risky, but hopefully you’ll have no problems.

This is a really interesting idea! We are going to look into it! Thanks!!
 

TeamSy

DIS Veteran
Joined
Nov 23, 2013
Because you booked an early flight out there, you are more likely to be able to get a flight out later that day if something happens with your original flight. Getting home is a little riskier since you are taking a late flight. I would have a plan B if your flight home is cancelled but there’s not much else you can do but hope it all goes well and try not to stress about it (I know this is easier said than done). We flew the weekend of Memorial Day and again two weeks ago with zero issues. We actually had some of the fastest security/baggage claim experiences on a few of the flights so sometimes it does work out. I hope you have the perfect trip!

Yeah we booked spirit airlines for the first time on a whim bc it was cheap. Didn’t realize they are so notorious for cancellations and just overall terrible. My fault! So now of course very nervous.

It’s one of those things that can go like so perfectly or just absolutely terrible lol.
 

Lewisc

DIS Veteran
Joined
May 23, 2000
When we purchased our AA flights, I paid a little more to get the trip insurance which would’ve given me my money back had the flight been canceled
You're entitled to a refund back to your original form of payment if your flight is canceled. I hope you bought trip insurance for other reasons
 

Lewisc

DIS Veteran
Joined
May 23, 2000
https://flightaware.com/
check on your flight and see how it's been doing. Use the option to see where my plane is now. If your plane doesn't make it to your airport the night before, assuming you have an early flight, good chance your flight will be delayed or canceled.

Edited to add Trip Insurance will almost never pay the cost for a replacement flight. It should pay for Disneys cancelation penalty. If your flight coming home is canceled or delayed, time requirement may apply, an allowance toward the cost of meals and lodging might be provided
 
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Best Aunt

"That's the best-est present ever!"
Joined
May 1, 2009
I was worried about cancellations and delays on my July/August flights. I familiarized myself with alternate flights out from my home airport. I also put all of the airline apps on my phone in case I needed to book something after I got to the airport. The Delta app lets you easily see what's going on with the plane you will be getting on. (It has to come to your airport from somewhere. Did it arrive the night before? Is it arriving that day? Is it running late?)

You also can see where the plane is on www.FlightAware.com
 

_19disnA

DIS Veteran
Joined
Aug 8, 2018
Flights can get delayed for a lot of reasons not within your control. Even before covid there were occasions where a flight was late/cancelled for weather or mechanical issues. If possible, I would select an airline with more then one flight per day from your departure city so you could get rebooked to a later flight if things change. Surprising your kids about the Disney trip vs. cancellation issues seems like two different things to me. No amount of worrying is going to change if a flight gets cancelled.

Flight insurance is mostly a waste of money since you have to read/interpret all of the fine print to see what it actually covers. All of those companies are running a business where they expect to take in more in premiums then they payout in claims. That is how all insurance works.
 
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chicagodisneyguy

DIS Veteran
Joined
Nov 19, 2008
We travel enough where I've started booking a backup flight and then cancel if my original flight goes as planned. ie for our September trip I booked us on a 2:30pm ORD-MCO on United. I also booked the ORD-MCO 5:15pm departure on AA as a backup . For the two of us it was an extra $109 each. But I know we'll use the credit at some point in the next year.

As long as the airlines keep the no change fees this is my plan going forward.
 

MakiraMarlena

It's a big black fish to you
Joined
Mar 28, 2005
I don't book late flights anymore. last departure from Orlando I was on a 4 pm flight which canceled and I moved to the 6:15. You have to jump on it though, because everyone who got kicked off the 4 pm will be trying to get on the 6:15. Even Mears allowed a switch of pickup time.
 

MrKnight

Former WDWCM & Proud DIS Member
Joined
Nov 19, 2014
To mitigate issues I strongly recommend booking flights that fit the following and you should be fine:

1. Direct non-stop flight
2. Morning departure
3. On a reputable legacy airline (American, United, Delta, etc.)
 

sam_gordon

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jun 26, 2010
To mitigate issues I strongly recommend booking flights that fit the following and you should be fine:

1. Direct non-stop flight
2. Morning departure
3. On a reputable legacy airline (American, United, Delta, etc.)
I would reverse the order of those (priority wise). A connection using a legacy airline is better than a non-stop (direct just means you don't get off the plane) on a no-frills airline. Just my opinion of course.
 

gottalovepluto

DIS Veteran
Joined
Jul 14, 2014
Nobody can answer your insurance question. There are tons of different insurances out there, you’ll need to read your policy to find out what’s covered for you.
 

TeamSy

DIS Veteran
Joined
Nov 23, 2013
We travel enough where I've started booking a backup flight and then cancel if my original flight goes as planned. ie for our September trip I booked us on a 2:30pm ORD-MCO on United. I also booked the ORD-MCO 5:15pm departure on AA as a backup . For the two of us it was an extra $109 each. But I know we'll use the credit at some point in the next year.

As long as the airlines keep the no change fees this is my plan going forward.
Can you tell me a little more on how this works? So day of you have 2 flights booked - at what point (and how late) can you cancel your backup flight? Then what do you do, have an airline credit to use in the future?

For example if we left today our flight would have been cancelled. There’s a backup flight on either jet blue or united we could also book that leave an hour later.
 

chicagodisneyguy

DIS Veteran
Joined
Nov 19, 2008
Can you tell me a little more on how this works? So day of you have 2 flights booked - at what point (and how late) can you cancel your backup flight? Then what do you do, have an airline credit to use in the future?

For example if we left today our flight would have been cancelled. There’s a backup flight on either jet blue or united we could also book that leave an hour later.
My current trip I have a 2:30pm flight I want to take and also a 5:15pm flight as a backup. I usually cancel the backup flight once I am on the plane and we are taxiing to the runway. For AA I just cancel on the app and I end up with a Trip Credit. The credit shows up in my online "wallet" on the website which I can retrieve later when I want to book my next trip. United has a similar process for trip credits. AA & UA are my main airlines so not sure how some of the other airlines work in this regard. But I suspect since airline policy is a lot of monkey see monkey do....most will be the same.

The key is most airlines require you to cancel the flight BEFORE departure. If you forget and try to cancel after the flight departs you should/might lose the value of the ticket per most airlines rules.
 










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