Flight delays and cancellations are as inevitable as death and taxes, but dealing with them strikes a much more uplifting note. What travelers fail to realize, is that when things go wrong, they have options, they have power, and really, some travelers will end up much happier (and perhaps wealthier) than others and may even make it where they want to go on time. Here are four things to consider when things go wrong, which will definitely help...

First, If Other Flights Are Going, You Can Ask To Be Rebooked On A Different Airline FOR FREE...

Though it's not mandatory for airlines, they generally do want to keep customers happy. If your flight is delayed or cancelled yet other airlines are still flying, you can very politely request to have your ticket transferred (endorsed) over to another airline for free. The airline does not have to oblige, but in many cases they will. You won't pay a dime, you'll just fly on a different airline. Good to know...

If They've Screwed Up, You Can Ask For A Later Flight, Perhaps Even Days Later...

When a flight delays or cancels, your plans inevitably change. Since your plans will change at the mercy of the airline, you can ask to maximize your future plans to fit your new schedule. If you were scheduled on a morning flight, for a lunch time meeting, and now that meeting is off, with no need to be in the new city that day, you can ask to go the next day. Be convincing, be reasonable but don't be afraid to ask.

On That Note, You May Be Able To Get A Refund For The UnUsed Part Of Your Ticket, If You Don't Need It...

Since delays change things, sometimes invalidating any need to travel, it's not at all uncommon to ask for, and receive a full refund on any unused part of your ticket. Simply let the airline know that the delay has made your plans futile, and you'll no longer be needing your ticket and ask them to process a refund. Airlines have actually gotten pretty friendly about this, offering proactive help during weather issues. Now you know...

Ask To Leave From A Different City (Within Reason)...

While on city gets pounded with thunder, rain, winds and lightning, a city just a mere few miles (or few hundred miles) away may be sunny skies. If you know for a fact that flights are leaving from a city you can reach by train or car without issue, it's perfectly within your rights to ask for your ticket to be reissued from an unaffected city, allowing you a fair chance to reach your destination on time. If I know that New York flights are not moving, but Boston flights are, I could proactively ask to be switched before my departure time, grab a train to Boston and make it wherever I need to go...