Airport delays are a thing this Christmas, so prepare for them

teen girl cooling herself with fan

In the lead up to Christmas, stories about busy airports are a given in both the pre and post pandemic world.

Often these stories are ignored by people who assume things will be “alright on the night.”

After a flight back from New Zealand yesterday, I can confirm airport delays are real and they need to be expected and planned for.

It took three hours from the moment I arrived at Auckland International Airport to get through bag drop and then customs and security for my Qantas flight to Sydney.

I’d expected things to be busy in the terminal itself, but the delays on the tarmac when arriving in Sydney I’d not factored in.

We sat on the tarmac for nearly an hour waiting for a gate that was suitable for a Boeing 737 to become available. Something I find strange for a scheduled flight in a very, very common aircraft.

Once we finally got to a gate, we had to wait for Qantas staff to arrive at the gate and allow us to get off the plane, which by this point was getting very hot.

As more and more flights take off and land from busy airports across the region, take this experience from a plane load of overheated passengers as a lesson.

Expect delays this Christmas. It’s great travel is bouncing back, but some parts of the industry haven’t kept pace with demand and they’re going to happen whether we like it or not.

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