Cost of Travel Delays

by Dual Income No Kids on July 14, 2009 · 1 comment

James & I are happily back in DC, if only a bit challenges by the fact that it is 5am West Coast time. Of course, as we left Oregon, we happened to run into a bit of a SNAFU. We ended up missing our flight due to delays, weather, and subsequent traffic backups.

In the end this cost us around $800 to buy ourselves out of the problem. A relatively expensive reminder of why you build even more time into potential delays. With all of my travel this is only the second time I’ve missed a flight due to issues on my side, but it is still quite a wake up call.

Last year a flight simply never took off out of Kabul – no real reason was given – and I believe this cost me around $1500 to deal with. At the time I wasn’t in as good of a place in terms of cash flow, so it was pretty tight in terms of adjusting various budget items to make sure that I could pay off my credit card on time. As a result we ended up doing more to establish an emergency fund for such times.

This time around I’m happy to say that I was in even a better place. Despite the difficulty of sucking up a large chunk of change out of my bank account, I feel very thankful that the money is there. I didn’t even have to dip into our emergency fund. In fact, I had to see how ironic it was that the last time I checked my account I did a quick calculation seeing that I had about $900 that I could think about where I wanted to invest this.

While obviously I’d much rather be investing this, at least I’m in a position to be able to deal with the hiccups of life. I believe this is the first step towards financial security. If you are careful about your finances you will find the extra cash (even if it is cash savings on travel delays) and be able to invest it and build your wealth faster.

Best,

Miel

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

1 Debt Free Dude March 3, 2010 at 8:18 am

On other thought. It is well worth your time to make sure you understand your airline's policy and canceled flight, delays, etc. Sometimes you have rights as part of buying a ticket that they may not tell you about unless you ask.

For example, in the US if a flight is canceled due to equipment problems and you have to spend the night they are required to put you up in a hotel. If it is a weather problem you are on your own.

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