Publisher's Note

  • Publisher’s Note

    It’s been 23 years since I’ve moved to Canada from the Philippines.  I remember that the first thing I looked for was a Filipino community paper so I can read some news about the community being new in Calgary.  I never found any Filipino community paper back in 1996. From them on I told myself that [...]

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Page added on November 21, 2011

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Traveling by air in winter requires advance planning, for the risks of weather delays and flight cancellations are high. However, if you decide to travel this winter, here are some tips to help you prepare for emergencies


BOOK EARLY. I always advise clients to purchased tickets at least three to four months prior to departure date. At this time frame airlines tend to feature the lowest prices.

GET A DIRECT FLIGHT OR GET FLIGHTS WITH MINIMUM CONNECTIONS. This is one of the most sacred traveler rules. It is also the most effective way to avoid weather-related delays. If you don’t have other options and must change planes, allow at least two hours, preferably three, between flights.

CHOOSE A MORNING FLIGHT. Remember that an early departure in the day is likely to be delayed than a later flight. If ever an early flight get delayed or cancelled, you may have more rerouting options. If you book the last flight of the day and it is cancelled you could get stuck at the airport overnight.

PACK LIGHT. Airlines are getting stricter on baggage limits and weight allowances. Most of them are charging for checking second bag and seems like they were not contented with that so they also jacked up their penalties  on excess, oversized and overweight baggage  with fees ranging from $50 to a whopping $600. So, I guess it would be wise to consider shipping your baggage to your destination.

When you are packing your carry -on baggage, you might like to  make some room for these items.

  • Blanket, pillows- Many airlines no longer offer blankets in economy class
  • Cell phone and charger and a phone card.
  • Credit card. You will need this for in-flight services as well as for an emergency overnight stay. Some airlines have stopped accepting cash for headsets and alcoholic beverages.
  • Food. Bring energy bars or other snacks in case of delay.
  • Medications and medical supplies. Bring all of your medications with you in your carry-on; do not put them in your checked baggage.
  • Extra clothing. At a minimum, pack a set of underwear and socks in your carry-on. If you are stranded overnight, you’ll be glad you did. You might want to toss in warm clothes just in case you may be diverted into a much colder climate than you expected.
  • Contact information and confirmation numbers. Pack a list of telephone numbers – tour operator, cruise line, airport shuttle, rental car office, discount hotels near the airport – you may need to call everyone associated with your trip to tell them about weather delays.

GET A FLU SHOT. It is advisable to get it before you travel.

If you are on prescription drugs, make sure you bring an ample supply for your trip and for any delays or problems. Check with your doctor for a refill to ensure you have enough for your trip. Also bring some over the counter remedies for basic ailments so you can treat yourself for minor headaches or colds


DRESS IN LAYERS. Winter weather delays usually involve cold temperatures, and even the nicest airports can get chilly.

LEAVE AT LEAST 2 HOURS BEFORE THE FLIGHT. You will not have to worry while standing in long queues for check-in, security and immigration. It will also give you time to use the restroom before you board; you will not be able to get out of your airplane seat for 20 to 30 minutes after takeoff.

EAT RIGHT. Hunger and nutritional issues can lower your immunity and make you more susceptible to cold and illnesses.

WASH YOUR HANDS. Airports are full of germs and planes are filled with recycled air. A great way to keep yourself from becoming ill is by keeping antibacterial wipes as well as sanitizer on you at all times. Try not to touch handrails on the escalators or moving walkways.

AVOID DVT. Walk around and stretch your legs and arm every hour to avoid Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)

If you are sick while traveling then it is a good idea to wear a face mask to keep from infecting others. Take lots of vitamins, especially when you are traveling, sometimes getting sick is unavoidable, especially when you are changing climates. Taking vitamins will keep your immune system strong.

Enjoy your trip, relax and remember there are things beyond your control. Prepare as much as possible, but don’t get stressed out if things go wrong.


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