Should You Pay More for a Nonstop Flight?

How much is convenience worth?

I didn’t fly much for years. It wasn’t that my family and I didn’t travel, it was that we would always drive. Flying just seemed to cost too much, and be too big of a hassle. Things have changed over the past few years, and flying has become more affordable. Now it feels like I spend a lot of time at Orlando International Airport.

When we first started flying again, the places that I travel to didn’t have a lot of nonstop options. That meant changing planes, sometimes at an airport that was way out of the way. That has changed as well. Since Orlando is one of the top travel destinations in the United States, more airlines are offering nonstop flights to and from some of the smaller airports. This is welcome news for my family and me!

Sometimes when pricing flights, I’ll still find a route that is cheaper if I change planes. Unless the savings is substantial, I’ll ignore that option. To me, paying a few more dollars is worth it when I have the convenience of not having to change planes.

Most people I know have horror stories from having to change planes. My personal favorite (I have several) was when I needed to change planes in Chicago. My first plane was late because of a minor medical emergency. When I got to my new gate, they were seconds from closing the door. They rushed me onto the plane, and I took seat, which was near the back. A few moments later the pilot made an announcement. “Ladies and gentlemen, we are waiting for the luggage of a last minute passenger.” Everyone on the plane turned and stared at me. That was decades ago, and I still remember it like it was yesterday.

If there is a large price discrepancy, I’ll save the money and change planes. But I will do a lot of research first. I have my list of preferred airlines, and I’ll keep an eye on specials. I’m on the email list for several airlines, and they sometimes have fantastic deals. I’ll also check the airport in Tampa. (That won’t work if you’re taking Disney’s Magical Express.) So far, I’ve been pretty lucky as far as finding direct flights. Since more flights are being added to Orlando, let’s hope that the options keep growing!