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Have a travel horror story?  Or just a story you like to tell a lot to get a laugh out of people?

My latest go-to is about how my body glitter set off the bomb residue sensors at the airport.


Tell me your story in the comments and the top five will win prizes.  One Gogo Inflight pass to the four runner-ups, and the person who makes me laugh or cringe the hardest will win three Gogo Inflight passes.

Enter now through Saturday, April 18th at Midnight Eastern time!

Plus, join the fun at 8pm Eastern in our Hangout on Air here.  Just click the play button on the event page to join the fun.

Thanks for such a great launch date!

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About Jeanne Marie Hoffman

Former bartender, still a geek. One equal part each cookies, liberty, football, music, travel, libations. Stir vigorously. +Jeanne Marie Hoffman Jeanne on Twitter

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  1. On my way home from a vacation, my flight was very delayed and I missed my connection home. On my way to find out if I could get on the next flight I overheard a couple from my first flight talking about trying to get to the same destination. I decided to strike up the usual small talk… Where are you from, where do you work etc. The man said he worked for a company which had recently laid off a good friend of mine, so I proceeded to tell them about it and how I would never work for a company who treated their employees that way. The conversation went on as we switched terminals when I realized he hadn’t mention what he did for that company. Turns out I was talking to the president of a VERY large corporation and his wife. I turned many shades of embarrassed and kept looking for the hidden cameras to pop out. No such luck, instead he thanked me for my thoughts and we parted ways. While my friend was very tickled that I really “stuck it to the man” for him, I’ve never been so mortified. It didn’t take long for karma to catch up- I ended up with food poisoning on the next flight

  2. Not sure if it’s cringe-worthy or not but I like to tell the story about how a fellow airline passenger told my wife and I that we “were the type of people that shouldn’t have children”

  3. Flying back from VIE last year I got “randomly selected for additional screening.” As part of the screening I had to take every single item out of my roller bag and tote bag so they could go through the X-ray machine empty. Literally every. single. item. Then the group of 5 agents (I was the only passenger around) stood and watched as I repacked my bags. Good thing I pack light!

  4. On a recent flight to Phoenix I scored Comfort+, but a middle seat. As I approached my seat I was shocked to see the woman in the window seat had a toddler and a golden retriever. The dog took up from the wall to the far edge of my seat.

    He was a service dog and I understand they have to carry him, but I’m not sure it was appropriate to take away my floor space to do it. The woman saw my look of shock and said “Just put your feet on him, he won’t mind.” You know, because he was the only one that might mind this arrangement for 4 and a half hours.

  5. Our family stayed in a convent in Rome. After checking in, my husband attempted to put our passports back into his money belt – which is actually a silk pocket that hooks onto his belt and hangs inside his pants. He was having trouble so he stepped into the adjacent breakfast area for privacy (it was afternoon so it was empty and the door closed behind him). He decided to take advantage of readjusting his tucked-in shirt too. While doing so, two of the nuns walked in on him while his pants were down around his knees. Needless to say, they all shrieked! Two in Italian and one in English. The nuns were good humored and kidded him during our entire stay.

  6. A few years ago I was visiting family over the holidays. My return trip was on January 1st, and was a series of connecting flights. After boarding the initial flight at GSP we were told the plane was overweight. Instead of asking people to take vouchers or find another flight, we instead taxied to an unused section of tarmac and burned off fuel for an hour until the plane was light enough.

    I missed my 1st connection, thus making what should have been a 5-hour travel day an 11-hour travel day.

  7. Flying back from an ice skating competition in Colorado to Newark via Dallas, I knew that my connecting flight to Newark was cancelled well ahead of time due to anticipated weather conditions. The next flight I could be confirmed on was not for four days. Being a poor just-out-of-college kid, there was no way I could afford to stay in Colorado myself or miss work. My option was to get on the standby list for the first confirmed flight to Newark the next afternoon, which required me to be physically present. So instead of staying with teammates an extra night in Colorado, I had to take my original flight to Dallas and spend the night in the airport. The most frustrating part about spending 16 hours in an airport alone is that you have to schlep all your stuff with you whenever you need to use the restroom! It could have been worse (I like to focus on the positives) as I was able to bang out a bunch of performance reviews for staff, made friends with the TGI Friday’s bartender, the airport provided coleman camping cots for us to sleep on, and a friendly elderly couple watched my things for me when I had to use the restroom in the middle of the night. And being that I was first standby, I made it out. What a difference a decade makes in resources available to us to deal with situations like this!

  8. for my first cruise I booked airfare myself months in advance. The night before the cruise I got a feeling I should call and confirm my airfare. When I called I found out all the arrangements had changed and now I would not arrive in time. I talked to the rep and she started making changes so I could make the cruise. At one point she had me leaving one airport and arriving at another at the exact same time! It was scary I actually had to tell her that would not work for me. Finally after an hour we had it straightened out. At that point I decided to separate my bags and split clothes between the checked and carry on bag. The next day I arrived at the airport , checked bags, etc.and flew to cruise port. When I arrived my checked bag was nowhere to be found. Airline said it would arrive soon and they would get it on the ship. When I got on the ship I told the cruise line about my bag and they gave me some detergent, rental tux for formal night and access to laundry to get my clothes cleaned. Checked every day but bag never showed up. After the cruise I got home and the next day my bag was delivered. I then find out I went to the Caribbean but my bag went to Rome. It had a better vacation than I did.

  9. With 20 minutes left on our first international flight last year, the adult passenger behind us vomited so hard that it went on me and the seat back in front of me. My hair and clothes were covered! The flight attendants helped as much as they could with warm wipes. Unfortunately, since our departing flight was delayed, we missed our connecting flight, which meant an unexpected 8 hour layover. With all clothes in our checked luggage, I spent 6 hours walking around Amsterdam (because I wasn’t about to let a little vomit ruin my first European trip).
    in my clothes as the airline didn’t offer use of their lounge.

    Gotta say, as a Mom of 4, and registered nurse. That guy threw up on the right person. My husband would not have handled it so well, lol!

  10. More that a few years back I was on a school trip to Italy for 2 weeks from the US. The trip was fantastic but on the way home we missed a connection flight at De Gaulle after a bus ride between terminals and re-entering security. I was the first one through, meaning I was lucky enough to see the plane back away from the gate.

    I was bummed at the time but it quickly got worse when I had to break the news to the 6 high schools girls I was traveling with that we were stuck at the airport over night. Cue the frustration water works.

    To Air France’s credit, they stepped up to the plate as we waited for the next flight out to the states.

  11. For a family trip to Disney World, we decided to fly a different airline from the rest of the group, so as to avoid the free-for-all that came with unassigned tickets on the airline they were flying. Our flight left 2 hours prior to theirs, and we were being a little smug. Turns out, we ran into weather, got diverted to a different airport then re-routed back. Upon landing, there was a fuel leak on the tarmac, and we were stuck in baggage claim for 2 hours while the staff manually unloaded the entire plane. It wouldn’t have been so bad, but we had one diaper left and no food for the wait, it was after 10pm, and nothing was open. All this was prior to cell phones, and we were unable to reach the rest of the group. The trip that was supposed to arrive at 7pm ended up being a 1:30am arrival. Extra fun with a baby and a toddler!

  12. When it was my daughters turn to go through security, her laptop bag set off the alarm and flashing lights. They checked it again and asked her to go through the metal detector and retrieve her bag. Well, the alarm and lights went on there too so they made her walk through 2 more times. At this point 5 security guards came and escorted her and her bags to a private room where she was thoroughly questioned and her bags we emptied and swabbed for residue. They discovered that the metallic threads in her sweater set off one set of alarms, so she was cleared for that. They had no answer why her laptop bag set off the other alarms, but they questioned her about the Chic-fil-a sauce that was in her carry-on that she was taking to her sister in WA (since she couldn’t get it there). After her explanation, one of the guards told her that they would have to perform an “E-A-T” test on the substance before they would determine what to do with her. She was still in shock about what was happening that she didn’t realize they were joking with her about “tasting the sauce”. They told her that no one could make up a story like she told them, so it had to be true. She was then let go.

  13. Though I’m not a huge fan of Amtrak, it is a convenient way to get from where I live in Detroit to one my favorite cities, Chicago. On the way back from Chicago, the area had received torrential rains, causing the train to move at a painfully slow pace. As we arrived one station before my final destination (possibly 15 more minutes on the train) and already four hours behind schedule, Amtrak announced that they were terminating the train due to how late it was. We all had to get off the train, board a bus, and take it the rest of the way, which again was only one station away. Ten hours later, I was finally home. This is why I prefer to take the 45 minute flight to Chicago from Detroit instead!!

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