Will Daylight Saving Time Affect Your Flight?


With Daylight Saving Time starting this Sunday, clocks will spring forward an hour, making it crucial for those who have travel plans to prepare accordingly. Although most digital devices like phones and computers will automatically adjust to the time change, that doesn’t mean you’re in the clear and don’t need to plan ahead. If you have a flight and need to know how Daylight Saving Time will affect your travel, read on for our guide to mastering the time change.


Check-in Times May Change
Those who like to check-in online the day before their flight are being advised to check in 23 hours ahead of time instead of 24 hours, as per standard guidelines. Since some airlines like Southwest and Spirit offer seat assignments on a first-come, first-serve basis, you may want to consider upgrading to get the best seat assignment for your particular flight.

Adjust Any Analog Clocks
This may seem like an obvious one, but we’ve heard many horror stories from travelers who had forgotten to change their hotel room’s alarm clock, thinking it would change automatically. Don’t forget to double and triple check all of your clocks before you go to bed Saturday night to avoid a possible nasty surprise on Sunday morning. You could also request a wake-up call from the front desk just to be sure.

Plan Ahead
Just in case your alarm clock accidentally ends up on the wrong time, it doesn’t hurt to have everything in order beforehand. Make sure you’ve checked everything off of your to-do list the night before: water your plants, make sure everything is packed, turn off your computers and book your parking spot ahead of time so if you have to make a mad dash out of the door Sunday morning, nothing is forgotten.

Rest Up
You’ll be losing an hour of sleep between Saturday and Sunday, so try to head to bed an hour early on Saturday night to make up for it. You don’t want to oversleep or head to the airport inadvertently exhausted; your body needs rest to fight off all of the germs you’ll encounter on your flight at this time of year. You can also bring extra earplugs and an eye mask to try to sneak that hour in during your flight.

The Tricky Spots
Domestically, Arizona, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands do not adhere to Daylight Saving Time, meaning that you may be off by an hour if you’re vacationing there this weekend. If you’re flying out of any of these areas or catching a connecting flight, double check the local time before heading out so you know how much time you have until your flight. You don’t want to accidentally miss your connection. Internationally, Daylight Saving Time is also observed in many places around the world, (sometimes adjust as late as March 25th) so use extra caution if you’re flying out of the country during March. This handy site will help you determine if you’ll be in an area where Daylight Saving Time will affect your travel plans.