Do your research

Last year I took a RS trip and they arranged all the travel arrangements.  They did not allow enough time to transfer from the domestic to international terminal.  I made my flight by seconds.  You should look at all your options and then have RS book based on your suggestions and research.  Several other people on the trip missed their connection.   

  • I agree that you should do some research ahead of time!

    I usually do my own airline arrangements just because I fly from an end-of-the-line tiny airport and mostly know what connections work best. My own standard is 3 hours between domestic and international legs and 2 hours domestic to domestic. If it's a bigger airport or one that is unfamiliar to me, I might go longer!

    I generally fly Delta just because it's a Delta Connection flight out of my local and sometimes the Delta website will give a ridiculously short transfer time. Sometimes in Salt Lake City it's 38 minutes. I have made that in the past but really, it's not worth the stress and anxiety it causes me! I just won't buy that connection any more!

    I wonder if the travel agent that does the flights just used the airport/airline "Minimum Connection Time" which is not the same (to me) as having a comfortable time to transfer thru an airport? This is where experience plays in. I once had a schedule change coming thru Minneapolis so I was talking to a Delta rep on the phone. She said - well it's a "legal" connection. I said - Have you ever transited thru Minneapolis with that time frame? No, she said. Well, I need more time than that so I'll need to have it changed!

    Just out of curiosity how much transfer time did you have and thru what airport?

    Glad you made your flight and sorry others didn't! I also build in flex time by getting to the tour hotel the day before the program starts. It means I need to figure out my own transport to the starting hotel but that is usually doable.

  • Research possible flights and pick out one or two options that meet your needs (e.g., departure/arrival time; specific airlines) then talk to the RS travel agent. Their system doesn't show them all the options, so they might be able to use your research to arrange the best set of flights. That was my experience when traveling from Portland to New Brunswick (Canada). Their recommendation was to route me through San Francisco, whereas I found a better itinerary that did not involve the detour
  • Have to put in another word for the RS travel agents. I did my research on flights to Paris. Three months out and the pickings were already slim for Premium Economy seats on any flights that worked for me. And prices were considerably higher than they were when I travelled to Paris last year around the same time. Today I called RS and got Premium Economy at less cost than I was seeing for regular economy. Very glad I called "just in case."