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Thread: Airline Travel for the Unawares

  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by R4YF1NKLE View Post
    I'm traveling soon with 2 young children, a 3 yr old, and a 6 month old. do you have any idea what kind of, if any, accommodations most airlines have for children?
    Im not real pumped to be "That Guy" with the baby, and im a little concerned about how they will travel.

    Show up early leave yourself plenty of time. You can never be too early but you can be to late.

    You can have one lap child. It has been a while since I worked as an airline agent but i recall the age is under two. You would have to book 3 seats.

    Confirm your seats ASAP. The time airlines start to do confirm seating varies by airline but call and talk with reservations and inform them you are traveling with 3 children and usually they will get you set up. If you are near the airport you may also stop in any time after you book your ticket to speak with the agents themselves.

    If you do have a lap child make sure you tell the agents ASAP when you book the trip. You must be in a row that has an extra oxygen mask over head. Some aircraft have an extra in all rows others do not. Confirm this with the airline shortly after booking if online or while booking if over the phone or at the airport.

    I recommend a small umbrella stroller that is easy to travel with. Strollers are gate checked and stored in the baggage compartment of the aircraft. big expensive strollers are bulky and awkward. They sometimes take some finesse to fit into these compartments as well as have the possibility of a heavy bag falling off the stack and on the stroller while in flight. Most are plastic which is easy to crack and break. A cheap umbrella stroller is small and light and easier on both yourself and the agents.

    There was nothing more annoying than having that lady with the huge $1000 stroller with 500 removable parts and a 100 step process in folding it up (1. which only make it 2 inches small that what it was unfolded / 2. that is if they actually did fold it or just left it for us to figure it out) holding up everyone else.

    Talk to the gate agent before hand. Some are jerks (i have worked with plenty of them) but most are just people trying to get the aircraft in an out. It is not a big ordeal and this is not there first rodeo. They have worked with large families before, just a quick, "hey I have three little ones with me and a stroller or two, let me know if i need anything before we board." Most likely they will give you a stroller check tag which a portion will be attached to the stroller, the other given to you with a matching number/barcode.

    Keep the stroller tag in a place where you wont lose it. that number gets scanned or manually entered but not always attached to your PRN (aka reservation) in the computer system. That tag is the only other number other than that of the one on the stroller and you have it, don't lose it.

    When you book your flights look at the times. Make sure you have plenty of connection time if you are on two flights. Add some extra time even if you are confident. You do not want to miss due to even a small 15 min delay because the other lady with the big stroller who did not read this happened to also be on your flight. This goes back to the too early too late thing.

    You have kids, they cry. Everyone know this but still no one likes it in a small confined space such as an aircraft. What ever you use that gets their attention the most, take it with you to try to save yourself from as many eye rolls and lowered eyebrows as you can. It will happen but at least you tried your best.

    You are traveling with kids so you know the drill everything takes 3 times as long. No need to rush through it. Make it apart of your trip rather than only using it to get to your trip. Most kids love airplanes take them early so they can stare out the windows and see everything. This also will leave you plenty of time in case something slows you up. Heck even some airline agents who actually enjoy their job (surprisingly we do exist) and likes talking with passengers or kids may, if they are not busy, show them some neat things to look at.

    Enjoy your trip.

    Quote Originally Posted by gannon View Post
    Nice advice. And I worked for American Eagle for a few months a couple of years ago. I had no idea that the company as a whole was that bad. Since it is a subsidiary of American Airlines, do those little facts apply to them as well?
    No airlines use there contract airlines for scape goats for bad statistics. If you fly on a regional carrier first then on a main line, if you complain about the service on a main line they will tally the complaint up for the regional. Same story for bags, if you they miss load the luggage on the main line, again they will tally it up to the regional. It gets even better that even if you were booked on a regional but was changed to a main line and you never even flew the regional they will still tally it up for the regional just because of you were booked on them.

    Because of this, a good gauge of the the main airline is to look at there regional carrier statistics. The only trouble is those regional airlines which fly for multiple carriers. American Eagle only flys for AA so they work well where as Chautauqua airlines fly's for just about everyone so it is unknown as to who they statistic came from.

    On a personal note, I could not stand AE i got laid off Express Jet d.b.a COEX which I loved but COEX bid out our contract and awarded to AE. I got a job with AE but could only take it for about 8 months until i had to get out. I worked with COMAIR/Regional Elite for a short time after. It was a bit better than AE but not to much.
    Last edited by <Ghost>480WA; 2/18/2012 at 2:41 am.

  2. #22
    Senior Member conanobrennan's Avatar
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    Apr 2011
    San Jose, CA
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    bump because this is now extremely relevant to my interests and thanks @eski for posting this

    also, I really like United a lot because you can show up and try to standby onto earlier flights and I almost always get the earlier flights. Not flying Delta anymore because they charge a change fee of at least 50 bucks and usually 100 for my flights it you try the same tricks. i have two flights (with one connection apiece) next week that I can't move without a change fee. all my meetings on friday got cancelled and my flight still doesn't leave until 7pm. damnit
    Quote Originally Posted by TigerWoods2 View Post
    Sorry man, I only have two modes... rape or post about idiots.

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