It‘s less than 10 minutes till your flight is scheduled to leave, yet the boarding has not even begun. Even though it‘s evident that the departure is going to be late, the flight information screen still insists that you’ll be taking off on-time. Sounds familiar? Well, you’re not alone. In fact, about 5,000 flights a day are delayed or cancelled, but now you can avoid the waiting and know when your flight is delayed upfront.
Airlines are often adamant to announce flight delays and usually don’t mind keeping their passengers in the dark until the last minute. While for long we have been left guessing how long it will be before we take off, Google decided to make our task easier and came up with an app that can predict flight delays.
The company recently updated its Flights service with a new feature that might help us get the information we deserve. In addition to already existing flight ticket reservation service, flight information and confirmed flight disturbances, the app is now also able to predict delays.
Google uses its machine learning algorithms and historic flights status data to predict flight delays. While the results are not always accurate due to limited amount of information collected, the predictions will become better as more data is analysed. For now, the company is 80% sure about its predictions, and it’s still better than nothing. To check out if your flight is delayed, just search for your flight number or flight route, and you’ll get the details in results.
Don’t trust algorithms? No worries, you can always check the status of your flight yourself at numerous flight trackers, such as flightaware.com or flightradar24.com, which provide a live feed of airborne planes from across the globe. Just type in your flight information and you’ll be able to see its status, and more importantly, where your aircraft is now.
While knowing that your flight will be late is handy, you shouldn’t forget to make your check-in on time. According to Marius Stonkus, CEO of flight compensation company Skycop, failing to do so might cost you your compensation.
“If you haven’t completed your check-in at least 45 minutes in advance of your scheduled departure, the airline is not required to pay out your compensation, even if the flight’s late for more than 3 hours. That might mean a loss of up to €600. – Marius Stonkus explained. – So even if your flight is not on time, make sure you’ve checked in.”
Most airlines offer the possibility to check-in to your flight online. This way you are not obliged to present yourself at the airport before the scheduled time. However, if you’re travelling with registered baggage or opted for check-in at the airport – you’re out of luck – you’ll still need to be on-time. At least you know what’s waiting.