"Travel is supposed to be fun"! This is a quote I heard recently in a podcast by Scott McCartney from the Wall Street Journal's column called The Middle Seat
. Domestic air travel, however, is getting more frustrating and challenging making this statement less likely. Over the last 13 years, I have traveled extensively for business primarily within the US. Everyone knows the radical changes that were made to air travel after 9/11 and the results on the airline industry. As a professional traveler, I enjoyed some of the perks of being part of an airline loyalty program that helped relieve some of the stresses of air travel, but I maintained a travel schedule that involved logging between 80 to 120 thousand miles each year to earn that privilege. This is hardly a mileage target that a casual traveler will accomplish on an annual basis.
Air travel will continue to be challenging for the occasional flier. Spirit Airline
, a domestic discount airline, recently announced plans to charge for carry-on baggage. The popularly of the airline, because of their low rates, has resulted in increasing seating on each flight, but luggage space is limited. Because carry-on baggage exceeds the storage capacity, flight schedules get disrupted and there is an increase cost to store baggage prior to departure. What is prompting move by Spirit is the conversion of some of the Airbus A315 aircraft from 150 seats to 178 seats. This not only reduces the space of each traveler, but also reduces the overhead space per passenger.
As an alternative to cramped airlines and airport delays, domestic travel, whether it be by automobile, rail or bus, is often a great way to see and experience unique and interesting aspects of our country. Setting up a road trip plan
can maximize your enjoyment and put the fun back into traveling. The advantage of a road trip is that your schedule includes much more flexibility and likely more interesting experience than that of working off an airline's ridge schedule.
Post your feedback of your recent trip or a "must see" activity in your home town. Testimony by our members will help others develop a more enjoyable travel plan.