Tag Archives: CES

The Big Freeze

Making My Way to CES

It’s early January – time for the Consumer Electronics Show.

I’m always excited to go to CES and see the new devices from hundreds of manufacturers – devices that are waiting to dazzle us. For the past 30+ years I’ve been attending this whiz-bang exhibition.

But this year it is very interesting getting to Las Vegas. Beginning on New Year’s Day the weather services warns us of heavy snow and frigid temperatures for the next week. Two days before my scheduled travel date, I receive a notice from United Airlines that my Monday flight is cancelled and that I should call to reschedule.

I spend six hours on hold to United’s reservations center and when I finally get through to an agent I make an alternative reservation for later in the day on Monday.

An hour later, I receive another United notice that this flight too is cancelled. Back on the phone, this time for more than four hours, and they reschedule my flight to Wednesday evening. This flight is not going to work since I would miss two full days of CES.

So I look for alternatives.

I know that Allegiant flies directly to Las Vegas so I check their schedule. To my surprise there is space available on Monday and so I immediately book the flight. Of course the weather will ultimately determine if the flight actually take place.

Driving to the airport is hazardous with the zero-degree temperature over snow and ice-covered roads.

As I view the airport gate assignments I see most of the other flights from Grand Rapids are cancelled. Most likely they fly to Detroit, Cleveland and Chicago – cities where the airports are shut down.

The incoming flight from Las Vegas is 30 minutes late. But despite the drastic weather my flight to Las Vegas departs an hour late. Here’s a vote for air service city-to-city rather than the hub and spoke service used by most airlines.

A short three and a half hours later, I’m in the desert without any snow and enjoying the 60 degree temperature. I am lucky to get out of the big freeze.

Today I hear that the temperature in Grand Rapids is -10.

I had to use my sunglasses in Las Vegas.