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Remember Time Zones When Flying



I was sitting at the Dallas Fort Worth airport when I overhead this conversation right behind me. The woman said she was on stand-by for a flight that left at 10:40. She said she had almost an hour to kill before going the gate. I looked at my watch, which I had already set to local time and it was 10:35. She had already missed her window for that flight. Unless she was converting everything to her own local time, which is unlikely when you are reading paperwork or airport screens.

Remember to take time zones into consideration when you fly. The departing time for a flight is the local time at the airport. The arrival time is the local time at the airport you are flying too. That is why you can sometimes fly to another city and arrive around the same time that you depart. Although I do travel more than the average person, it seems fairly simple to me until I listen to other people talking at airports. You'll hear stuff like, we don't need to eat. We get in at 1pm so the flight from Dallas to Phoenix is only an hour. When they are actually changing time zones and it's closer to two and a half hours. Then I look at the little kids they have with them and I'm hoping I'm not on their flight when they get hungry.

As someone who has now lived in all three continental US time zones, it is interesting to have noticed the differences. It does affect many things like business, relationships, sporting events and television. People on the east coast will commonly call you at what may be 6:30am where I am. Some of them will even acknowledge their city and my city and seem to know where they are yet wonder why I'm not answering the phone.

The basics

LA-NY 3 hours difference. You go three hours ahead when heading to NY and you get three hours back when going to LA. Chicago is one hour back from NY. Denver and Albuquerque are two hours back from NY. The most common mistaken time zone I had was related to Michigan. Although it's far from it, it is on east coast time while Indiana to the south can be in two time zones. And I lived for years in Arizona where the time didn't change at all. Everything else did. You just had to remember when your tv shows changed by an hour or a relative was now an hour off.

Traveling over a time change weekend is another fun one. It can be good if it brings you closer to your normal time zone but bad when it goes the other way. Why do we have daylight savings any more? Why not just pick one time and stick to it? It would solve a minor little problem. Then we just have to remember the various zones.


Adam | Oct 9, 2009 | Category: Air Travel

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