The reason for your delayed flight might matter to your airline, but it doesn’t matter to us. Whether you’ve slept through an alarm, misread the date of your flight or your car has broken down on the way to the airport, we’re determined to help you reach your desired destination as quickly as we can. With this object in mind, we’ve produced a guide to getting your trip back on track after what for many people is the most stressful travel scenario possible – a missed flight.
If you’ve managed to make it through passport control and security – and still missed your flight – you’ve made salvaging your travel plans slightly more difficult for yourself.
You have to endure the embarrassment of being ‘decontrolled.’ After notifying a member of staff about your predicament, they’ll then help escort you out of departures and passport control. Wondering why? As an airside passenger, you’re in a secure, restricted zone and, if you no longer have a flight to catch, you have no reason to be there.
If you somehow had the time to make purchases in the departures lounge, you’ve not only demonstrated a gross ineptitude for time management, but you’ve also cost yourself money. Anything you’ve bought has to be declared to customs to ensure the correct tax has been paid, which inevitably leads to you paying more money. Last but not least, if you’ve also checked in any luggage, you’ll have to head to the relevant carousel to retrieve it.
Once the ‘decontrolling’ process is complete, you can then go about righting your earlier air travel wrongs. Head to the nearest airline desk and you’ll be informed of your options.
If it’s no later than two hours after your flight was scheduled to depart – and you’re fortunate enough to be flying with one of a few airlines – you might have the opportunity to pay a ‘rescue fee’. For a onetime fee, typically somewhere in the region of £50-£80, you’ll be booked onto the next available flight. It is, by some distance, cheaper than paying full price for a replacement flight.
If you are unable to salvage your travel plans by paying a ‘rescue’ fee, your best course of action is to see if you can book a seat on any other flights departing that day. If this isn’t an option, you can ask to be put on a reserve list. It might be slightly optimistic, but by doing so, you are essentially hedging your bets that someone else is going to make the same mistake as you. If it can happen to you, it can happen to anyone, right?
If that doesn’t work, you’ll have to visit the desks other airlines that are also running services to your desired destination. You can enquire at a range of desks for availability and pricing and shop around for the best possible deal but bear in mind that you can often get a better deal online.
No matter how you elect to forge a path forward, you need to be sure to communicate the change in your plans to all the relevant parties – the taxi driver waiting to pick you up from arrivals, the hotel expecting you to check in, and the restaurant that is holding a table for you. It is also important to communicate to the airline that you have made alternative arrangements for your outbound flight.
All of the smug satisfaction that comes from the hard work that goes into There are few things worse than desperately scrambling to arrange a replacement outbound flight only to find that the airline has cancelled your return flight.
On the rare occasion that you’ve missed your flight and it genuinely isn’t your fault, you might have some recourse. As long as you can prove why, you should be able to claim the price of onward travel. Proof of roadside assistance on your car or confirmation of delay from a public transport service is irrefutable and should go a long way in helping you recoup the cost of your missed flight.
Of course, if you had booked your airport transfer in the first place, you wouldn’t have to battle your way through such a stressful and time-consuming ordeal. Speedy airport transfers are our forte and we have helped countless passengers arrive at the airport with plenty of time to spare.