Sandra Ali’s travel woes: Flight cancelations, lost luggage

Local 4 anchor Sandra Ali writes about her recent, and complicated, trip from Detroit to Las Vegas


Have you heard the old Yiddish saying, “Man plans and God laughs”? That keeps playing over and over in my head.

The day before my daughter’s 10th birthday, we had a direct flight booked with Delta Air Lines from Detroit Metro Airport to Las Vegas for a dance competition. It was the national finals, something these girls and boys have been working toward and practicing for all year.


I didn’t want to fly out on my daughter’s birthday because I’m superstitious, and I always want my kiddos to wake up surrounded by balloons on the morning of their special day.

We had a flight scheduled for 6 p.m. that day. It got cancelled.

I spent two hours trying to get someone from Delta on the phone. When I finally in touch with someone named Ace, he told me if I could get to the airport right away, my only option was to get on a 3:20 p.m. flight. He said that was all they had for two people the foreseeable future.

My heart sank. We dropped everything and got in an Uber and headed to the airport. We pulled up as our flight was boarding. All we cared about was getting on that flight. Nothing else in that moment mattered.

We managed to get the last two seats on the plane. But, in my frantic rush to get to the airport, I didn’t realize our new flight wasn’t a direct flight.

My daughter and I went from Detroit to Jacksonville, then to Atlanta, where we were then on a third plane on our journey to Vegas.


When we got to Atlanta, we found out our flight was delayed. Again.

More than 12 hours later, we finally landed in Las Vegas. I couldn’t even tell you what time it was, or what day it was, when we landed. But, by the time we were on the other side of the country, it was already my daughter’s birthday. So much for all that planning.

The icing on the cake? My personal suitcase that had all my clothes for the week didn’t make it.

Now we’re in Vegas, safe and sound. All of my daughter’s costumes made it, which is what counts.

As for our return flight, I’ll let you know all how that goes. Stay tuned.

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