Flight Delays: Disaster to DelightThere’s no doubt that flight delays can be frustrating, especially if you’re on a tight deadline to reach your destination. But, occasionally, airlines handle them so well that the delay turns from a disaster into a delight.

This week our members share their “best” experiences of airline delays that turned out to be surprisingly pleasant. Some delays were handled so well by the airline that they almost become fun, while others have resulted in some very handsome compensation pay-outs that made the hassle more than worthwhile.

TripleB was once booked on a Qantas A380 flight from Singapore to Sydney that was delayed overnight. After a pleasant night at Crown Plaza – paid for by Qantas – this member had a very pleasant flight home the next morning. Most of the other passengers had already been rebooked onto other flights, and there were so few passengers left on the delayed flight that everybody got a free upgrade

The A380 left with just 30 passengers on board, including the 4 of us. Shortly after take off everyone in a premium cabin was moved to first and the rest of us to business. It was very pleasant indeed. The icing on the cake was when the points posted as full fare economy rather than discount economy a few days later.

SponsorSFC, meanwhile, tells of being booked on a Business Reward ticket with Virgin Australia from Melbourne to Perth. The aircraft was changed to a smaller plane at the last minute, and there weren’t enough seats on the new flight. This member was lucky enough to get a full refund of the points paid for accepting a detour via Sydney.

I agreed to return to PER via SYD in exchange for a refund of points. Great deal. A fair delay all up but still arrived back same day. Probably my only real “free” award flight.

Have you had a flight delay that was more of a delight than a disaster? Join the discussion on the Australian Frequent Flyer forum: Whats your best experience on a delayed flight?


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Matt Graham
The editor of Australian Frequent Flyer, Matt's passion for travel has taken him to over 60 countries… with the help of frequent flyer points, of course!
Matt's favourite destinations (so far) are Germany, Brazil, New Zealand & Kazakhstan. His interests include economics, aviation & foreign languages, and he has a soft spot for good food and red wine.

You can contact Matt at [email protected]