“Delayed flight? Aiyahh.. but I wanna celebrate Christmas in Bangkok!”  We feel you bro, nobody likes delayed flights. But sometimes they are unavoidable because of various reasons, including but not limited to: bad weather, engine error, aircraft fueling, as well as the most common yet not very well-known cause… late passengers.

You see, the ground staff will try their best to locate guests that have already checked in but are nowhere near the boarding gate. Not only because they want to see your Instastories on Christmas in Bangkok, but also because it’s a lot of hassle to unload checked-in bags and prepare the necessary reports. And because of this, the flight will get delayed and cause some kind of domino effect on the return flight as well as the next one, and the next one after that, and the next one…Smart travel to avoid delayed flights 2 (1)

So here is the ONE SIMPLE THING that you can do to help prevent that: ARRIVE AT THE AIRPORT EARLY. At least 2 hours before your flight (3-4 hours during peak periods like Christmas, New Year, CNY, Hari Raya, and school holidays).

Yup, it’s that easy. Just because you’ve checked in (online or at the counter), does not mean that you’re all set to fly. There is still a whole journey of actually getting to the departure hall to board your plane, with a number of process and distractions along the way too! Remember, gates close 20 minutes before Scheduled Time of Departure (STD)! 

TOP REASONS WHY GUESTS ARRIVE LATE AT THE BOARDING GATE AND WHAT YOU CAN DO TO EASE THE PROCESS:

1. Not anticipating immigration queue

Whether you are a foreigner or a local, the queue at immigration is unpredictable. Morning flights tend to be extra crowded!

What you can do: Arrive 3-4 hours before your flight time, check in and drop baggage, and proceed to enter Departures immediately. You can never tell with the immigration queue so best to go in early.

2. Not anticipating volume of fellow guests

And then there is also the queue to enter the boarding gates whereby the airport officials need to scan your hand carry. With people struggling to take out their laptops or to take off their belts  and watches, you can expect some kind of delay here.

What you can do: Do not delay your way to the boarding gate. If you are travelling with laptops or other electronics, prepare to take them out of your bag and put on the tray for scanning.

3. Not aware of how long it actually takes to get to the gates

Klia2 is huuuge, with four boarding wings (J, K, P, Q). If it’s your first time flying out from the airport, navigating your way through might be a little daunting.

What you can do: Take note that ample time is needed to reach the boarding gates. There are walkalators and buggies but they can expedite the journey only by a few minutes, and the rest is a lot of walking!

4. Going to the wrong gates

As mentioned, there are four boarding wings – J, K, P, and Q. Take note of your actual boarding gate.

What you can do: Take note of your actual boarding gate on your boarding pass (if you check in at the counter) and double check it on the information screen as well. If it happens to be J or K, thank your lucky stars as those are nearer. If it’s P or Q, well you better get moving, son!

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5. Bringing over 7kg of hand luggage

The rule was set for a purpose, and that is to avoid the overflowing of hand carry onboard. Because of this, the crew will need to offload some bags into cargo thus delaying the flight.

What you can do: Prebook your baggage when you purchase your ticket. Make sure your hand carry is below 7kg and within the size requirements.

6. Taking too long at duty free shops

Perfume this, alcohol that… ugh so many things to buy!

What you can do: Shop with Big Duty Free! Prebook your items online and have them delivered right to your seat! Isn’t it neat? Or you can also do your shopping onboard, approximately 30,000 feet in the air!

7. Taking too long to eat at the terminals

Hey, it’s okay to have a little something to eat before your flight. But do set ample time for you to walk to the boarding gate.

What you can do: Prebook your Santan meals online. Not only are they cheaper, you have a variety of options too!

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Travel smart, arrive early. Enjoy your holiday! :)

Irvin Hanni
Author

She is happiest when cycling in a foreign destination, rubbing noses with a cat, or napping by a lake. Her goal is to touch every owl, monkey, puppy, tiger, and turtle that she meets on her travels.