What can go wrong on a trip that was only meant to be fun and relaxing? Turns out, a lot. You missed your train from Paris to Amsterdam and don’t speak a word of French. You’re a vegetarian but get served non-veg lunch on the flight and when you try to make the exchange, you get informed that veg food isn’t in stock. You accidentally leave your favourite travel accessory in the top cabinet of the airplane, on your way back. Or you miss your flight because you didn’t realise you were on the wrong terminal or worse, you were at the wrong airport.
Travel mishaps happen to the best of us, no matter how well-planned we are. I decided to ask my adventurous teammates to reveal some of their worst travel stories and the answers only assured that it happens to all of us.
P.S. If you've actually lost your favourite travel accessory while travelling then you can make up for it by gifting yourself some cool travel stuff from here.
Ready? Jet, set go…
"I have had every possible bad experience while travelling. I am not kidding! In Egypt, I landed at the airport and realised that they had left my bags in Abu Dhabi. The next morning was spent in Cairo running from one office to another to find out if it had arrived with the next flight.
I have missed a flight from Kathmandu to Delhi because Indigo doesn’t care if your connection was late. Recently, I missed a flight from Mumbai to Delhi because of rains and traffic. I have waited at the Goa airport for four hours, at the Delhi airport for four hours, at New York's JFK for almost 12 hours. I have been dehydrated to an extent that I had to be administered a shot. I spent one entire trip with impaired hearing because of cold. But the most harrowing experience was the volcano eruption in Bali the day I landed!
Call it bad luck or the perils of travelling every month, I have faced these mishaps and I have learned to deal with whatever airports and nature throw my way."
- Apeksha Bhateja, Lifestyle Editor
In a situation like this, here's what you can do: First of all, while packing, make sure to pack all your essentials such as documents in your carry-on baggage. In case you lose your check-in baggage, do make sure you keep your boarding pass safe as it will act as a written proof of your check-in baggage. File your claim immediately at the airport as if your bag has been released at a wrong airport, it may take a couple of days to get it back.
In case of a missed connecting flight, an airline will re-book the next possible flight for you if the delay happened due to airline's fault (mechanical or delayed flight). If the next available flight is the next morning, they'll provide you meals and stay. However, no law mandates this process, it's an out-of-courtesy decision. If the delay was due to weather, the airline will help you book another flight but may not offer a compensation.
"I was heading home on-board a Rajdhani Express when the next-berth kid decided to have his pre-Diwali bash in the compartment. He had smuggled a cracker into his Doremon bag from home. When his parents had licked clean their lunch boxes and pleasantly dozed off, the kid decided it was time. He snuck onto the top berth and with the lighter stolen from his father, he set alight the cracker. The explosion shocked everyone awake, with a lot of people scampering around thinking it was a gunshot. Emergency brakes were applied and the railway police were called. My train was delayed for over two hours. Amidst all this, the parents never apologised for their son, instead blamed everyone who was awake and failed to stop this terror."
- Nayan Das, Junior Branded Content Manager
In a situation like this, here's what you can do: This kind of situation is a result of bad parenting and until a parent realises the same, there's no shortcut to escaping it.
"One of the most horrendous travel experiences I’ve had was when I was flying from Bengaluru to Goa for my friend's wedding. My flight was at 6 a.m. and I reached the airport at 5:32ish and the gates were about to close. I went to the ticket counter and the lady told me, I cannot board the flight. And that the next flight was at 12 o'clock, which was horrible because my friend's wedding started at 4 p.m. Since I didn’t have any choice but to take that flight, I waited for 6 hours at the airport and ended up sleeping at the CCD. Thankfully, I almost made in time for the vows.
- Cathline Chen, Lifestyle Writer
In a situation like this, here's what you can do: Reached late for a flight? It happens to the best of us. Talk to the airlines for your best options. Some airlines do consider helping extra when it's an emergency case. Take the cheapest option and if the next available flight is after a few hours, take it as an opportunity to relax in an airport lounge. Instead of panicking, collect the wifi password and watch a movie. Scour duty-free stuff. Spot people or rather spot celebs. However, if you were travelling to somewhere close, consider other options, for instance, if you were travelling from Delhi to Jaipur, take a Volvo.
"I love to travel and it is so much more than just seeing a new destination for me. It is about the people you vibe with and the thoughts you share when you're on absolutely low connectivity with the outside world on social media. However, sometimes, if the people are disastrous, you end up having the worst time of your life. And that was when I was on a trip to Goa with a bunch of people. Some were friends and others were acquaintances. There were couples on the trip too. Friends fought with each other, there were accidents and the couples had so much drama that I had no peaceful time of my own. What I realised is that I am never going on a trip with so many people ever again."
- Krithika Kumar, Senior Features Writer
In a situation like this, here's what you can do: Well, if you have not already confirmed your group trip, try solo tripping, it's fun and you get so much of me-time that you start loving yourself. In case you are already on a trip, take a break from the group and do some shopping alone or visit a bar by yourself.
“I was travelling from Goa back to Delhi in an Air India aircraft. An uncle came and sat next to me. He started making a video of me walking from the restroom back to my seat. On being asked, he denied it completely. I complained to the steward, who then checked his phone. He was found guilty and was asked to show his boarding pass. He was warned and told to behave else he'd be blacklisted.”
- Niyati Budhiraja, Lifestyle Writer
In a situation like this, here's what you can do: As it was done by Niyati, at any such instance, reach out to the airline staff. Airlines are pretty tight about their rules on the safety of female employees and female passengers as the industry is highly reputed and welcomes a huge number of female employees every year.
Do share some of your worst travel stories with us in the comment section down below!
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