Part 1: Laid over by United at the Austin Airport Hilton. Life could be worse.

First, I’m thankful United discovered the mechanical problem while on the ground. Ironically my friend had remarked she hoped the flight wouldn’t be cancelled due to the thunder storms.

Given the choice of flying to Denver, arriving at 1am and checking into a hotel only to transfer to a flight to LA vs. staying at the Austin Hilton and getting an early direct flight to LA, there was no contest. After all, I’d arrive at the Hilton in time for American Idol. Oh I mean in time to use my $10 dinner voucher.

While my fellow castaways and I joked that we could get bread with the $10, in fact the Hilton has a variety of sandwiches and salads priced under $10. There’s free Internet access in the beautiful lobby, which is paved and walled with Austin’s everpresent light tan stone. The hotel rooms circle the tall lobby atrium making it very pleasant.

Housekeeping quickly brought me deodorant, tooth paste and a brush, and a comb and jokingly offered a sewing kit. I’m even looking forward to making the Lavazza coffee in the morning.

The moral is

1) when the airlines fail you, go for the Hilton

2) here’s the phone number for United baggage customer service: 800 221 6903

I couldn’t find this United phone number so I am providing it here as a service. Isn’t that keyword spamworthy? United baggage customer service ! 800 221 6903 🙂



  1. Welcome to Austin:-) You’re right that is a great hotel which has won several awards for customer service.

    Here’s a tip. Always have the reservations number of the airline you’re flying programmed into your cell phone. The instant your flight is cancelled, dial the number as you walk from the gate to the ticket counter. The last time I did this I was 100th in line. When there were still 50+ people the reservations agent on the phone (American Airlines) had rebooked me on a later flight and given me a free upgrade to first class on the longest leg of my flight.

    I’ll be reading…




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