Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Nightmare in Atlanta



Talking to my brother the other day I was shocked to learn he got stranded in the Atlanta, Georgia airport for three whole days. Tornadoes ripped through that part of the United States and well over a thousand Delta Airline flights were cancelled.

Chaos ensued. With inadequate seating, motel accommodations, or any means of escape stranded passengers sat or lay on the floor.

There were no rental cars available, even, the lots literally empty. My brother saw it with his own eyes after online rental car booking gave him a useless confirmation, the harried agent turning him away.

Walking alongside others from one terminal to another on an endless wild goose chase, the poor man barely ate or slept trying to reach first his original destination and then to just get home. He spent five hours in one line alone.

And every subsequent flight was canceled, sometimes due to a flight crew or attendant shortage. By the time he actually escaped to an area motel he carried a stack of useless boarding passes. Able to at last shower, mentally and physically exhausted, he collapsed in the bed and slept through two wake-up alarms.

Upon learning that he would not get a flight home until Sunday (!), he researched other travel options and found himself in the same straits with Amtrak trains and Greyhound buses. Neither offered a direct route. Nobody, it seemed, could get him home any sooner.

Finally he reached an upper manager of his company, the folks for whom he traveled. Don’t you know that manager booked a completely new flight and got my brother out in three hours? My brother recognized many faces of those still stranded and believes Delta essentially lost them in the system.

At home he emailed the airline to complain. An automatic response informed him that someone would respond in sixty to ninety days. Nice, huh?

What a nightmare. It makes me want to just stay home. Never hearing about this on the news I did find articles. This one doesn’t do the story justice, though the bride missing her wedding made me sad.

What about you? Do you like to travel? What’s your favorite mode of transportation?

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12 comments:

  1. Wow...I knew that area was having lots of rains but this is the first I have heard of tornados and I have lots of family just an hour from that area. Crazy. Me....I love to drive. I love driving back roads but if its a longer trip, I will go interstates. Flying to California is my means of transport from Nashville TN. Driving 33 hours don't sound like that much fun but when my son and daughter in law buy a new home with a mom in law room, Dakota and I will drive out there to stay a month or so. Lily I will probably have a friend keep her.

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    1. I like driving, too! I swear we are kindred souls. This happened in April (my brother and I don't talk like we should). I hope you get to enjoy the trip you describe. Sounds neat!

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  2. I like to travel in my own car, with Bill and the dogs. And, I like to do relaxed travel! Glad Bro is home and all is well.

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    1. Thank you! I hope you get to enjoy a trip soon.

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  3. Yikes, what a mess. Glad someone sorted it out, but... Sounds like Delta lost some passengers for life.

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    1. Thanks. He's planning to fly to Florida soon and I bet he goes with a different airline. Be well!

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  4. That is awful. We never fly, but we have taken the bus and train to NYC. I prefer to just stay home. Glad your brother got home.

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    1. I once thought I'd like to be a jet setter. Now it would only be with my own plane. ~grin~ Thank you for the kind sentiment.

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  5. I've experienced some delays in airports, but nothing like that. Mind you, I've never been in a tornado either, but sounds like the infrastructure isn't up to handling it.

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    1. I'm glad nothing this bad has happened to you, Nick. I recently heard that other countries have better run airlines. Should visit your neck of the woods and jet set around to see if it's true!

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  6. Replies
    1. Makes me want to stay home. Be well, my dear!

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