It can be just a little bit frustrating when you step onto a flight expecting to go to one destination, and you end up somewhere else. Flight diversions are unfortunately a part of flying, and they can cause a lot of inconvenience.
However, the fact is, flights usually get diverted for good reason, and in many cases, landing in a different location is in your best interests. It’s useful to know what to expect with flight diversions and how they can disrupt your travel plans before you fly, so that you can be prepared.
Why do flights get diverted?
Flights get diverted for all sorts of reasons. Often it’s for safety issues. Your plane might not have landed in your desired location, but at least it has landed safely. Flights get diverted because of poor weather conditions which make it unsafe to land, airport strikes, security threats, technical issues with planes and medical emergencies on board.
What to expect
If your flight gets diverted, the airline will try and get you to your desired destination at no extra cost. Although it’s sensible to check individual airline policies on flight diversions before you fly. If you need to fly to your final destination, you may have to wait until the plane has been checked and is ready to fly or until the weather has improved.
This could take anything from a few hours to a few days, depending on what the issue is. Therefore, you might want to put some essentials in your hand luggage, so that you have some comforts and a change of clothes should you find yourself waiting around.
If you land in the correct country, but not the right airport, the airline may arrange buses or taxis to take you on to the right location. If you choose to make your own way there, they may not reimburse you.
If you are booking flights for an important event, you should consider flying out several days before just to make sure you get there on time, even if your flight does happen to get diverted. Before flying, always check the airline’s policy on diverted and delayed flights, so you know what to expect and what your rights are should this irritating situation occur!
Pre-booked onward travel
If you have a connecting flight and your prior flight gets diverted, chances are you might miss it. You may want to have a backup plan in case this happens, or book a direct flight to avoid missing your connecting flight in the first place.
If you have pre-booked trains or transfers and miss them due to a diverted flight, you might end up out of pocket.
Where possible when booking public transport and transfers, try to get flexible tickets, so that if your plane is delayed you can simply travel at a later time or date.
If your flight gets diverted please call the car park, using the phone number on your confirmation voucher and let them know that you will be arriving back late.
Depending on the car park you booked, and the length of your delay, there may be an additional fee payable on arrival back at the car park/airport.
For more information, read through your airport parking terms & conditions.