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Stuff goes wrong for me whenever I’m traveling for the holidays. Over the years, my Chase Sapphire Preferred Card has given me literally $3,000+ because of it.
Its latest contribution came on the way home from Thanksgiving when I learned a very obvious lesson that had not previously occurred to me. There is high risk involved when you’re booking the latest flight of the day.
I know plenty of strategies that help resolve flight delays and cancellations. But when you book the final flight of the day, you really have NO recourse for anything that might go wrong.
After recently experiencing a delay in this situation, I’d highly recommend folks NOT reserve the last flight of the evening if they don’t have a card like:
Don’t Book a Late Flight Without a Card Like the Chase Sapphire Preferred
Nearly any time I’m booking a flight back home, I’m looking for the latest possible flight. Wherever I am, I want to stay there as long as possible before I have to return to the minutiae. Such was the case during my recent Thanksgiving travels.
I booked the final flight of the day from Oklahoma City to Cincinnati (8:16 pm), with a connection in Dallas. Sitting at my gate, the travel notifications began to roll in: 15 minutes delayed, 30 minutes delayed, 50 minutes delayed.
Eventually, it became evident that there was NO way I’d make my connection, and I’d be spending the night in Dallas. There was nothing I could do. It would be later than 11:00 pm before I landed in Dallas, and zero airlines were headed my direction until morning.
Fortunately, I paid for part of my ticket with my trusty Chase Sapphire Preferred. As long as you pay for part of your ticket with the card, you receive travel insurance. If you’re delayed overnight or if the delay is 12+ hours, Chase will reimburse you for reasonable expenses like lodging, food, toiletries, etc.
The Dallas Fort Worth airport has 2 Hyatt hotels attached to the terminals. I chose to book the Grand Hyatt for the night, which cost ~$200, and then I filed a claim with Chase to be reimbursed when I got home. I’ll show you how crazy simple that was in an upcoming post.
If you don’t have a card that offers travel insurance, like the Chase Sapphire Preferred, you should NOT gamble by reserving a late flight. As a matter of fact, the earlier the flight, the better chance you have at selecting another flight, route, airline, or whatever it takes to get you home in a timely fashion.