Is This Normal? Sea Year Travel Question

Discussion in 'Merchant Marine Academy - USMMA' started by KPMum2012, May 16, 2011.

  1. KPMum2012

    KPMum2012 Parent

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    I hesitate to post this question because I don't want to sound like a complainer. But the situation seems a bit extreme, so I'm trying to figure out if DD is just unlucky, or what.

    DD finishes her sea time and disembarks from her ship on Wednesday, May 18 - yes, in 2 days. But she still does not have any flight information. Nearly a week ago she got an email saying that flight information would follow. But when she pulled into Tacoma yesterday, there was nothing. She's back at sea again until Tuesday night. This seems to be cutting it awfully close with her travel information. She did send a follow up email later in the week asking if she had somehow missed an email and was told that nothing had been sent. DD's ATR has known for 4 weeks that she has to leave the ship that day.

    She doesn't even know what airport she will be flying into or what day. She requested to fly back to the area she flew out from, DC, rather than NYC. But she got no answer to that question either. So we're rather floundering as to how we arrange to get her home. What have other people done in this situation? Do they insist on flying the mids back to NYC? In which case we have to figure out on very short notice how to get her and two bags from there to VA.

    Thanks in advance for any advice or suggestions.
     
  2. KP13Mom

    KP13Mom Member

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    It is my understanding that returning flights are back to NY. DS needed to report to KP and then arrange for transportation home.
     
  3. lgottliebdds

    lgottliebdds Member

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    Flights home

    Wen my DS was at sea last tri he did not get his flight info till a day before he was leaving the ship.
     
  4. KPDAD2011

    KPDAD2011 New Member

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    I would not worry too much. We experienced the same thing and the flights always seemed to come through at the last moment.
     
  5. 2009KPer

    2009KPer Member

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    Shipping, even the liner services with "set schedules", is variable and can be unpredictable with last minute changes/delays. Therefore, flight reservations are made at the last minute to be sure that the crewmember (cadet) will actually make it. This sounds expensive, but it actually saves money in the event the ship is delayed (no re-booking, plus ultra last minute-ticket) and is less work for the ATRs since they only need to worry about someone's travel once - the day of or before they get into port.

    Now, the only time I ever flew through the ATRs was once when I had two days between ships. I'm pretty sure those arrangements came last minute too. Other than that, I either flew my own way (making reservations by calling airline one port prior to detachment - this carries some ri$k) or was lucky enough to be with a company that was willing to pay for cadet travel, including making all of the arrangements (relatively rare).

    Relax, the flight will happen. Even to this day as a permanent crewmember with a very large company, I still get last minute travel arrangements both to and from the same vessel every time. This is simply part of the life.
     
  6. KPMum2012

    KPMum2012 Parent

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    Thanks, everyone, for the feedback. DD was nervous about the process because her ATR never answered any of her questions or gave any explanations. ("Flight info to follow" as opposed to "You'll receive flight info approx. 2 days before leaving ship.") The communications were terse in the extreme and pretty much ignored her specific questions.

    She does now have a flight to JFK and we will figure out the best way to get her back to northern VA. Is it better to use the train, or should we just pay the extra checked baggage fees for her 2 bags? She'd probably prefer to pay the extra fees and avoid hauling the bags through the train station. :wink:

    Thanks again!
     
  7. kpparent

    kpparent Member

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    Sometimes the airlines will allow for extra baggage at no cost when cadet can produce travel orders. It is worth a try. Good luck
     
  8. kpparent

    kpparent Member

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    Sometimes the airlines will allow for extra baggage at no cost when cadet can produce travel orders. It is worth a try. Good luck
     
  9. shutterbugC

    shutterbugC Member

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    Or a military ID.
     
  10. KPMum2012

    KPMum2012 Parent

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    Travel orders do usually work. But she will not be on orders any longer because the orders get her back to KP. She's indicated a willingness to get herself to Penn Station and take the train. There are several direct trains that work and the train station is closer to home than DC airports. Looks like we'll see her early Thursday morning for the first time in over 6 months. Last sea term at KP, but hopefully many more sea voyages to come. We Army types are adapting to having a Mariner in the family. :thumb:
     
  11. kdbax

    kdbax Member

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    DS takes Amtrak all the time and it works well for him. When he reported to his ship beginning of March, he and his sea partner took LIRR from Great Neck to Penn Station and then boarded Amtrak to Providence. No problem with luggage. And I've seen people hauling all of their worldly possessions (much more than a cadet has) through Penn Station. Usually they end up sitting next to me on the train.:rolleyes:
     

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