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Advice for Wayne County Airport Flight Please

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Advice for Wayne County Airport Flight Please

My question is in 2 part, please bear with me.

My friend will be flying from XNA, Bentonville, Arkansas, on a Delta flight that will arrive around 8:50 p.m. and connect to another Delta leaving for ITH, arriving there around 10:50 p.m. ITH time. The layover is 39 minutes and the on-time record of the incoming flight is 65% and the outgoing flight is 85%.

My friend is an extremely nervous traveler, and not in the best of health. To reassure her, in light of the discouraging punctuality of the Delta auxiliaries that operate these flights, I have requested her to find a safe motel near the airport should she miss her connecting flight to Ithaca, NY.

My question to you: can you please suggest a SAFE hotel/motel in the $65-90/night range, or more if necessary, where a single lady would be at perfect ease, and very convenient to the airport?

Any other advice regarding this trip, XNA --- ITH, would be gratefully accepted.

Thank you for your consideration.

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Ithaca
Ithaca
Finger Lakes, NY
Detroit, MI
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1. Re: Advice for Wayne County Airport Flight Please

The ontime record is irrelevant. It could historically be 99% on time, but late the day you are flying. Don't worry about things you can't control.

If she misconnects due to Delta's delay, they should put her up in a hotel (unless weather related) at their expense. If it is weather related, or Delta won't pay for whatever reason, they should at least provide discount vouchers. They will also tend to hold the last flight of the day if they know she is on the ground.

Any of the major chain hotels around DTW will be safe and all offer shuttle service. There is a Westin attached to the terminal, but it will be more expensive. She might want to request it if she does get delayed,

Unless she has mobility issues, 39 minutes is enough time to connect anywhere in DTW. The inbound operates with a CRJ-900 which could park just about anywhere, but will most likely end up at the B concourse. The outbound is a CRJ-200 which go out of B or C. If she is lucky, the gates will be close.

Edited: 16 September 2012, 00:20
Ann Arbor, MI
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2. Re: Advice for Wayne County Airport Flight Please

All the chain motel/hotels around the airport are safe--they are actually in Romulus where the airport is located and are heavily used by travelers so no worries. All will have free shuttles to take her door-to-door, again adding to the security of traveling alone.

Two things I would add to tev's advice are:

1) If the flight is running late tell your friend to tell a flight attendant about her tight connection time. I have been on two flights where they ask everyone to let people with tight connections off quickly while everyone else waits. It is rare, but if your friend has this tight connection so do others. I'm sure there's no company policy to do this so it would be the call of the flight crew.

2) Most flights are met by a gate agent. Especially if your friend's flight is a bit late, it is worth it to stop there to confirm the gate hasn't changed and to let the gate agent know she's on the ground and coming to her flight. Most times they'll call ahead and let her next flight know she'd coming if there's risk of missing it. I say most times because all airlines have surly employees who wouldn't care to help in this way.

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Romulus
Romulus
Michigan
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3. Re: Advice for Wayne County Airport Flight Please

To tev9999, luv2snorkel,

Thanks a million. Both of you seem very kind, thoughtful, and experienced about DTW. Your practical advice is deeply appreciated and is exactly the type of tips

I had been hoping for. Going on the Internet, it seemed that the Best Western Gateway offered the best combination of value, comfort, convenience and lack of general grunginess, at c.$70/night, followed by Fairfield $100, Clarion [higher grunge, lower price], and Red Roof Inn [more grunge, cheaper]. These are in order of room availability and my preference. Thank you for the shuttle information, which I gathered from their websites with a measure of relief, although the quality of service varies.

Yes, I do understand that Delta SHOULD pick up the tab with dispatch, but there is often a lag, or a fuss at the precise moment, with promises to settle later etc. As you may imagine, this lady is a very nervous flier, with no emotional resources to negotiate anything with anyone. Therefore, I have suggested she pick up the telephone and just find a good place to rest, IF NEEDED, with all other matters to be left to me for later.

Thank you all for your suggestions, which have been most valuable.

Ann Arbor, MI
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4. Re: Advice for Wayne County Airport Flight Please

gt--if your friend does miss her flight and she's going to go ahead and book a hotel herself, make sure she does stay at the airport long enough to get rebooked on a new flight (that step would be where she'd get a hotel voucher as well).

Rebooking (but not a hotel voucher) can be done via phone as well so my strategy if the line is really long is to get in the line for rebooking and also call the airline and wait on hold for someone to help me and use whichever one comes first, the attendant at the airport or the one on the phone.

I have never had any ambiguity with an airline paying for the room--either they will or they won't, no issues about being reimbursed at a later date. If they will pay for the room or offer a discount they will send your friend with a voucher to a hotel.

I hope everything goes smoothly for your friend and none of this will matter for her! For regular airline travelers flying is mostly just an annoyance to be dealt with, but for someone who is not comfortable traveling there is a whole other level of stress to deal with. Do encourage her to bring an engrossing book or something she really enjoys doing for the flights so she doesn't just sit there and fret!

Little Rock
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5. Re: Advice for Wayne County Airport Flight Please

It may be worthwhile to pay for a "premium seat" ($20-ish) so she can be seated at the front of coach (regional jet - CR 700 has 3 rows of 1st class).

The small planes are better than large ones (for getting off quickly) but being on row 4, 5, or 6 is better than 15, 16, 17 and can save 5 minutes.

Also NOT curb-side checking (pink/red tag) a roller bag (carry-on sized bag on a "real plane") can save 5+ minutes too. A large purse sized bag (small / soft duffle/back pack) will fit in the overhead bin or under teh seat in front, but the normal carry-on (22" x 15" x 9" will not.

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6. Re: Advice for Wayne County Airport Flight Please

Thank you all. You are offering some real valuable tips, which is why I solicited help here in the first place. It is exactly these types of ideas that, when added together, mean a whole lot. Since I am an inexperienced traveler, I am really most grateful to you wise and caring friends out there. Be well, and be safe, always.

7. Re: Advice for Wayne County Airport Flight Please

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