If I tell you I missed my Horizon Airlines flight from Las Vegas to Sonoma County and had to stay another 24 hours in Sin City, you’ll say, “Sure you did.”
But it’s true. I’m still not sure what my mind did to cause me to miss the Sunday afternoon flight after I arrived at Vegas’ McCarran Airport plenty early. As far as I can tell, this is what happened:
You may recall that my late dad lived outside of Vegas, in Pahrump, so I’ve flown there many times the past 10 years. Usually I’ve taken Southwest, which I love. But with Southwest, it’s all about the boarding pass. You want to go online exactly 24 hours ahead of the flight in order to get a coveted “A” boarding pass.
But now I’m flying Horizon and I don’t have to strive for an “A’ or wait in line at all. I know there’s a great seat waiting for me on that sweet, little Bombardier Q-400 turbo-prop.
So when I arrived at the Vegas airport Sunday afternoon, a boarding pass was the last thing on my mind. I was so early, I had a beer and watched a little football. About 45 minutes before flight time, I sauntered to security, where it hit me. I didn’t have a boarding pass.
The security officer told me to go to an electronic kiosk and get one. I tried, but the machine informed that it was less than 45 minutes before flight time so it would not issue me a boarding pass.
So I ran, or came as close as I can to running, to the Horizon counter far, far away. The woman there took a look at my confirmation paper and told me I’d never make it back to the gate in time.
Five percent smarter. I’d have been on that plane if I were just 5 percent smarter.
But I’m not. So I got a ticket for the same flight on Monday afternoon (no charge, thank you Horizon) then went to the hotel board and looked for a deal. The Travelodge a few blocks away on Koval Lane sent a shuttle and gave me a room with a bed, four walls, a sink, the works, for 35 bucks.
I do recommend that motel if you ever do what I do and get so blissed out before a Vegas-to-home flight that you forget you do need to get a boarding pass into your hand at least 45 minutes before flight time — even on Horizon.