Ever been bumped off a flight?
As you've probably seen in news headlines, it isn't exactly a great way to start or end your trip. Travel analyst and founder of TravelPulse.com, Mark Murphy, has some helpful tips to keep you stress-free the next time you plan to fly.
GETTING BUMPED OFF YOUR FLIGHT
"When you fly around the holidays, you're at risk to get bumped," says Mark. "The airlines are overbooked and the first thing they'll ask is if you want to volunteer to be bumped. Then, they'll try to get you $500 in vouchers — not cash — and then keep going up. In some cases, you could get up to $800!"
Great, so that covers voluntary bumping, but what about involuntary bumping?
Mark says if you are involuntarily bumped and are delayed more than one hour you are entitled to cash! How much cash? That all depends on how long you've been delayed and the one-way price of your original ticket.
If the airline does not get you to your destination within one to two hours, you are entitled to double the amount of your one-way ticket price — up to $650! So, if your flight was $200, you'll get $400!
Not too shabby.
Now, if your delay is more than two hours, Mark says you could get up to $1,300!
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LOSING CHECKED LUGGAGE
Checking your luggage is always risky — lost luggage can happen to anyone! But the good news is, if it does happen to you, your luggage doesn't have to be lost forever.
First things first (and it's a pretty obvious one), Mark says to always have a tag on your bag. And no, not just any old flimsy tag like the ones airlines usually provide. Get yourself a sturdy one that can't easily be ripped off.
Second, don't just put your contact information on the outside of your bag — place it on the inside as well. This way if the tag somehow comes off, your contact information will still be there so your luggage can find its way back to you.
Third, if you have an itinerary, put that inside your bag, too. This way if it gets lost, whomever finds it will know where you're headed next and try to get the bag to you there.
Lastly, Mark says you shouldn't pack these items in your checked luggage because the airlines are not responsible for them:
RELATED: 7 Brilliant Packing Tips from a Stylist to the Stars
THE BEST TIMES TO FLY
Some days are cheaper to fly on than others, and here's why. Mark says that business travelers are usually flying out on Mondays and returning on Fridays. Because of that, those are the most expensive and busiest days to travel. Weekend travelers tend to fly out on Thursdays and back on Sundays. So that leaves Tuesday, Wednesday and Saturday as the best days to fly.
Mark also suggests you book flights before 8 AM or after 8 PM.
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