My best friend recently traveled to Atlanta for a conference. She had plenty of stories for the blog when she came back (just wait until you hear my etiquette for next week–I shudder just to think of it), but the first thing that caught my ear was this. “The Atlanta airport is so disorganized!” she said. “I arrived at my gate, and was sitting there waiting for my flight, when out of nowhere they made an announcement that they were changing the gate!” She stopped, waiting for my reaction. “What else happened that made you think they are disorganized?” I asked. “Well, nothing. That was it,” she answered.
At this point, I was reminded how much stuff frequent fliers deal with that is baffling to those who fly less often. Airport security (“What do you mean I can’t take barbecue sauce in my carry-on? It’s sealed!”), turbulence (“Are we going to crash? What’s happening??”), and yes, gate changes. I can absolutely see how frustrating gate changes would be if you’ve never dealt with it before, but unfortunately it’s a fact of traveling life. Airplanes arrive late, depart early, flights get canceled, etc. And the people who figure out the gates are arranging and rearranging a constantly moving puzzle. Honestly, considering how many flights go in and out of Atlanta (and DFW, ORD, JFK, LAX…..) it’s surprising the gates aren’t changing even more often!
I don’t spent a lot of time in the Atlanta airport, so for all I know it could actually be disorganized. But gate changes will happen everywhere, from the largest to the smallest airports. Every so often, check the sign at your gate to make sure you’re still at the right place. And remember, traveling is an adventure! Try to be flexible and just go with the flow, and it will be way less stressful.
Readers, is there anything that was disconcerting to you when you first started traveling that you are used to now?