New Study: Flying Is The Worst Part Of The Trip

Did the flight ruin the vacation? You’re not alone. From CNN:

Asked to cite their “most problematic” trip experiences, 40 percent of those surveyed cited flight delays and 21 percent said airport security. Only 15 percent said hotel amenities and cleanliness, while 9 percent cited rental cars.

The survey was conducted for Orbitz by the Ipsos Public Affairs Project.

That explains why we write so much about airlines and only bring up hotels when they toss a class of 4th graders in to a deadly tornado. —MEGHANN MARCO

Study: Flying the biggest source of trip trouble [CNN]
(Photo: imorgan73)


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  1. Youthier says:

    You mean, the part where you aren’t actually where you want to be, doing what you set out to do is the least enjoyable part? This seems pretty stupid to me. When I’m on vacation, I really hope the least enjoyable part is the flight or airport security.

  2. tozmervo says:

    Its not stupid when flying is so bad it keeps you in one place. I’ve been across to Europe twice in the past two years, and I don’t think I can make myself go back because the flights were so miserable. You know its bad when a flight nearly negates a stunning three week stay in Florence, Italy.

    Actually, to be fair, one of those four plane trips wasn’t too bad. That one was on Air France. The other three? Delta once and United twice. Gee, what’s the pattern there?

  3. RichAndFoolish says:

    40% cited flight delays but only 21% cited security?

    Security is a built-in delay! 30 minutes to several hours wasted. Thousands of dollars of harmless items stolen. And, all of this is guaranteed to happen every flight and for no measurable benefit!

  4. Buran says:

    Well duh. The last time I went on a flight I had to use the bathroom, went to go do so, got told to go sit down and shut up. Is that what you really want to say to someone who REALLY needs to go? No sense of manners. That kind of crap doesn’t get airlines any kind of pass. Nor does their charging us more for less and cramming us in like sardines.

  5. Don Roberto says:

    Being the road (and modes of transportation in general) geek that I am, I rather enjoy flying, driving, and taking a train. For me, it’s the journey, not the destination, that matters.

  6. typetive says:

    I simply refuse to fly for pleasure. Because it’s not.

    Luckily I live in the great state of California and there are many wonderful destinations within one day’s drive.

  7. TechnoDestructo says:

    I would gladly spend 12 hours on a train over 4 hours on a plane. (Or, excuse me, 8 including airport bullshit)

    High speed rail is just better in all respects except speed…and proximity to origins and destinations narrow that gap. Leg room, aisle room, price, security (the trains themselves aren’t as vulnerable as planes…the tracks are, though…), air quality, scenery, vibration and noise.

    I really wish the US had it.

  8. MeOhMy says:

    My mother always grouses that air travel is probably the only industry that has gotten progressively WORSE since its inception. I can’t say that I have personally had any real flight nightmares (knock on wood), but each time I fly, I feel more like a dollar sign and less like a human being. I wish the airlines would just get on with it: sedate the passengers and stack them up like lumber. So much vertical space wasted in those planes!

  9. adamwade says:

    After my last flight, I came to some similar conclusions. It just was no longer worth it for me to fly, even in spite of the higher gas prices and obvious time commitment. I’d just rather drive my own vehicle and take a bit more time than deal with all the headaches, BS, and security hassles just to get a commercial flight. I’ve put my money where my mouth is – I just don’t do it anymore. If I decide to fly internationally I accept all the B.S., but in my own country I just won’t participate.

    I travel to a city about a thousand miles away from me 2 to 6 times a year, and for a long while with the ultra-cheap flights (from $49-59 each way) lured me in. When I could pay $120 and be there in a few hours there just was no question. Now, a few years later I am paying $200+ for the same flight, and because of all the restrictions at airports and having to schedule transfers and such it takes me about 9 or 10 hours from the time I depart my hotel, get to the airport, etc., until I reach my doorstep. On my last two trips, I actually timed it with a stopwatch.

    I can drive the same distance in 20 hours, or roughly twice the time. However, there are MANY plus factors in driving : don’t have to worry about packing luggage for a flight (I just fill a couple of duffel bags for the week), or “contraband” like shampoo, having my own vehicle while I’m on the trip instead of having to rent and/or rely on public transportation, and simply having control over my own experience. I’ve felt almost…violated the last few flights I’ve taken, and I’ve never been searched more than normal. Airports just seem like unhappy, anxiety-ridden places. It’s a shame, because I actually enjoy the act of flying, just not all the bull crap that surrounds it now. Plus, it gives me an excuse to exercise that MP3 player in my car – not very often do I get to test the capacity. :)