So this travel gig has its pluses and minuses for sure. On the plus side I’ve gotten to see some amazing places over the last 12 years and have had an opportunity to enjoy most of the air travel too. On the minus side of things is the time away from home. Missing my family and not being able to be there on many days and nights.
So when it comes to travel you get use to some little things that’s make a huge difference in your travel experience. For example having Precheck to zip through security, w/out taking off shoes, belts or unloading your liquids and computers. Or getting an email with your rental car stall and just walking up to it, hopping in and driving off. Things like this save hours cumulatively if you travel 100 plus thousand miles a year.
This means for me that checking a bag is so foreign to me on a work trip. Sure I get free checked bags on most airlines but that’s the last thing I want to do ever. Time its waits for no one. I mean if you even figure conservatively it takes 20 minutes for bags and we all know it takes longer if I take 4 trips a month that’s 160 minutes, multiply that by 12 months and you’ve got 32 hours a year just waiting for bags
Why this rant about checked baggage? Last week I worked in DC. I fly from SFO to the East Coast via JFK. I arrived at JFK on time and had about 2 hours to sit and wait in the lounge. With one hour to go, I get the dreaded text. Your flight is cancelled. Hey but I’m at an American Airlines hub so I should have no problem with getting to DCA right? Well wrong. There was only one other flight to DCA that night and it was way oversold. I had also missed all remaining flights to BWI or Washington Dulles too. They would gladly put me on a flight the next day. Not a fat chance, I had to work at 8 am. At this point the AA Angel, found me a flight in 2 hours out of LaGuardia. This is where not checking a bag came in handy, there was no way that they could have retrieved my bag gotten it to me and transported it and myself to LGA with enough time to make the flight.
Sure this is slightly extreme, but I can count on all my fingers and toes and then some the times I’ve had to be rebooked, either by choice or necessity, and having my bag just makes it easier for the airline and for me. Having to rely on the airline to get your bag prior to moving me to a different flight etc… In fact there are many times, they won’t even consider moving you if you have a checked bag, too complicated for them and no guarantee they can get/find your bag.
In my case, having my bag let me travel and get to DC later then expected but not a whole day!