crowded airplanes

Flying for the 4th? Pack Patience.

Given the promise of packed airports and airplanes and all the cancelations and delays this past week due to weather and a host of other issues (see: finger-pointing, below), a hot air balloon may be a better way to get where you need to be this holiday weekend. Or maybe space ship.

Finger-pointing: Who’s to blame if you’re stuck at the airport?

The finger-pointing regarding who and what is to blame for travel disruptions that started last weekend and are building to this holiday weekend’s meltdown is already well underway.

In this Wall Street Journal article – and elsewhere – we learn that while the Federal Aviation Administration is blaming this past week’s issues on thunderstorms,” airlines, most notably United Airlines President Scott Kirby and other groups are pinning the problem on the FAA.

“I’m … frustrated that the FAA frankly failed us this weekend,” Kirby told company employees in a memo earlier this week, according to Reuters, “We estimate that over 150,000 customers on United alone were impacted this weekend because of FAA staffing issues and their ability to manage traffic.”

Tips for flying over the 4th of July Weekend

(Courtesy Joel Ross – Room 28)

There are lots of tips out there for making travel smoother this weekend. And for what to do if you end up stuck at the airport. But if you really want to or need to be somewhere and your flights are canceled (repeatedly) or delayed (repeatedly), very little is going to make you feel better about a ruined holiday weekend.

At, our evergreen advice is always to pack light/don’t check a bag; bring real food & snacks, non-electronic reading material, and a multi-plug extension cord (you will make friends); and tuck some cash in your wallet to use as ‘mad money’ in case you get stuck at the airport and need a drink, a decadent ice-cream, or a new piece of jewelry.

Whatever happens, don’t be THAT passenger