I’m here just for transit and the first thing I see as get off the plane is this:
Everything cancelled. Luckly I had a hotel booked for the night and my next flight was originally on for today, March 14 morning, but it was automatically reschedule for tonight. All I have to do now is wait.
It is 11:46 am and I am sitting at the hotel lobby. I am watching the head-lines and reading some news and they are all like this:
I seams to me, that I am going to be here for a while, since the shuttle to the airport has also been cancelled.
So, when one of the strongest storms in the history in New York hits the east coast of the USA and your flight gets delayed for more than 12 hours, you gotta find things to do. But first let me give you some tips, even if you are an expert traveler, you might be forgetting one of these stuff that might just save you.
1.Check the weather before leaving.
Yes, as simple as this, checking the weather of your destination might help you prevent not having a place to stay while a big storm passes by. If you notice there are warnings and news about bad weather conditions in the place you are going book a hotel. By the time you get to the destination it might be too late and you will be stranded in the airport. And if the weather improved by the time you land the hotel might agree to give you a refund.
2. Pack a smart hand luggage
Pack the following on your hand baggage, even if the airline did not loose your luggage, it is a good idea to have this items at hand:
- Extra clothes. Including underwear and a sweater, even if your destination is in the Caribbean, you don’t know if you will be greeted by a blizzard in the transit city.
- Food, but not fruits. Fruits are usually not allowed to be carried, but a packages of cookies might save your life, specially if you arrive late at night, during a blizzard
- Chargers. Is this necessary to explain? After a long flight, your devices are probably low on battery, and guess what, you are not going to be the only one looking for a socket.
- Cash. It should be obvious, but it is amazing how some people forget that cash exist. Credit cards are useful, but you can not tip with cash, at least in most places. You don’t want new yorkers giving you even less friendly look.
3. Contact the airlines.
Tip no.1 and 2, were prevention tips, but if you followed No.1 then you will get internet at the hotel and from there you can contact the airline. If you the blizzard occurs in the USA, like it is happening to me, then know that airlines will not be in charge of any lose you had because of the delay, but they will automatically try to reschedule you in the next flight available. So before panicking, check your email and look for the airlines messages. I am now traveling with DELTA and but the time I arrived to New York, they had already fixed everything. All I had to do is the online check-in, as it is usual. #nosponsorship
4. Keep Informed
This is a very obvious piece of advise, but seriously, watching the news, constantly checking the airline’s webpage news and updates and talking to the people at the front desk has kept me warm and comfortable all these long cold hours.
I also recommend that before you leave your comfortable hotel check if the airport is even open. This blizzard was so strong that the JFK was closed and reopened until the afternoon. So as a safe recommendation, check with the airline if the flight has not been further postponed.
The following is the view from my window, I took in the morning around 10 am, but it is now 2:03pm.
Here are some other images of how NYC looked after this blizzard
Now, how to avoid boredom? Here is a list of things I have already done, I would really like you know what would be your suggestions.
- Call you relatives and friends. This is the moment to catch up with friends, write them on Facebook, line or whatsapp. And why not call your mom? I know my mom is always ready to keep me company.
- Books. Catch up with you long forgotten reading. I hope yo have the ePub, of your favorite book with you. For me, it is the Eragon saga all over again.
- Games. Preferably if they are offline. For me? Pokemon Reborn, a fan made version. I need to thank my good friend Grexxen for this. Thank you.
- Blogs. Yes! catch up with your blog or if you don’t have one, start one! it is great to be able to share your experiences with other people.
- When you are done or fed up with all of the above, you can also sit at the hotel restaurant or lobby and pretend to do something important, but really you are just watching and analyzing other people. Perhaps inventing stories of the place they are from and where they are going to. Sometimes you try to ever hear their conversations and sometimes their voices and actions speak for themselves.
So here is what just happened at the hotel restaurant:
Before I start I would like to say that all the characters I mention here look and behave as if they are all from different countries and backgrounds. I was really interesting to see interacting with one another.
There was a man, to which I am going to refers as KIM., who was sitting with his computer at a table for 4. On the table next to him there is a woman with her baby sitting also at a table for 4. She is now sweetly and quietly singing her baby. I am going to call her ELLA. The baby has been still and well-behaved and ELLA has been sitting there for a while just minding her own business and entertaining her baby.
The elevator doors opened and a family of 4 non-English speakers comes out. I am simply going to refer to them as to “the GREENS”, mostly because they are wearing different tones of green. They were looking for a place to sit, then another guy, let’s call him MAX, who has no relationship to the GREENS whatsoever, sees the situation.
MAX tells the family not to worry and that he will get them a place to sit. He goes to KIM and politely but firmly asks him to please move to the table with ELLA. However, the man takes this as a total offense. He looks at ELLA and the baby as if they were from different worlds. Then KIM, grabs his things and reluctantly stands up. ELLA paid no attention to KIM’s looks but without showing any expression moves a couple of things away so that KIM has enough space for his computer.
KIM then walks with his things and stands next to the bar at the end of the restaurant. The GREENS see what happens but without saying “thanks”, neither to MAX or to KIM sit on the table. KIM stays on the bar for a few minutes and then walks away.
All I can say, is that this is many cultures shocking together in a very small space and short amount of time.
There is no conclusion here, it is just interesting to watch people’s actions and reactions.
Yes I am a little bit bored, but it will soon be time to go.
Finally!!! It is time for me to go to the airport. The wait is over and I need to take that flight.
I hope you are never trapped in a blizzard but if you are, hope this blog post helped a little.
Thank you for reading, here is an origami dragon for you.