How To Miss Your Bus, Train, Or Plane

So you’re on a trip to visit your creepy relatives, and you don’t really want to go. With a little planning and forethought, you can avoid being on time to catch your ride, and be able to get there much later than expected.

Make your reservations in the usual way. Have just a vague idea of how long each leg of the journey will take, and don’t check schedules or allow for connection time. An estimate is good enough. Don’t allow a lot for walking time, and don’t leave extra time for any unexpected problems that may develop.

Trust that all your paperwork is in order. Take care of any passport or visa problems on travel day, and trust that if any problems do develop, they can be resolved before its time to get on board.

Pack no sooner than the night before. If you have to, stay up late packing, and don’t worry about being tired or fuzzy the next day — you may be too tired to think, but keep telling yourself you can sleep on the plane or whatever.

If you need to take care of something important, like taking your pets somewhere they can be taken of while you’re gone, just handle it at the last minute. What can go wrong?

If there’s not enough room in your checked bag for everything that must be there, like some electronic items, just put them in your carryon bag instead. There’ll be some problems getting through security, but they’ll resolve it eventually.

When you get to the airport, you will probably be earlier than you absolutely need to be. Make use of the time by going to one of the many shops your airport offers, buy a newspaper or something, then head to the gate.

If there’s a long line to check in, just get on it, and believe that you will come out the other end in plenty of time. Don’t push the panic button and run, or ask to jump ahead, until you’re absolutely sure you’re far too late.

Take a brief glance at the monitor to see where your flight is boarding. Don’t waste time being too careful about it; if you do arrive at the wrong gate, how bad could it be? There should still be enough time to get yourself to the right gate.

Reset your watch only once. If you need to change planes, don’t reset it once at the connecting airport, and again when you get to your destination. Even if your connection is in a different time zone, trust yourself to mentally adjust the time as needed.

If your first plane is running late, you can bet that your second plane will be on time. A perfect excuse! If they tell you there’s not going to be enough time to make the connection, but you think there might be, just leave it to the experts to say what can and can’t be done. Don’t race to the next gate; just take it easy and have the service desk rebook you.

For even more fun, book your plane trip as one single round trip excursion. When you miss a flight, they will cancel your entire itinerary, including the return trip, without refund. Then you can make new reservations (at last minute high prices), perhaps having to fly into a different (nearby) airport because the plane that gets you to the right airport is full. Another good excuse!

See you there! (Eventually.)

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