Cathy Dicker says her experience has been anything but typical this year.
“It’s really, really frustrating and overwhelming at the same time,” says Dicker. “I tried to spend some time with friends here in the past week, but for some reason it just didn’t work.”
A few days ago Dicker arrived for a three-day stay in Dallas to see friends and didn’t want to use the free overnight option at the hotel because it would only cost her money.
It sounds like a problem that practically every traveler faces – whether you’re in Texas, Colorado, New York or California. But in Dicker’s case, she doesn’t just face spending hours at a hotel or too many dinners out. She also says a few pages on travel websites turned up nothing.
On Sunday, Dicker resorted to one of those used rental cars. She got to Dallas and was left stranded and had to open her suitcase of clothes in the middle of the airport.
“I had to collect my gear from my suitcase and put it in my car, because the other rental cars could not get the weight weight limit on them,” said Dicker.
From those adventures she’s learned a number of winter travel truths. To save money, she’s taken her savings away from a family vacation and bought a $100 “passport” so she can go anywhere.
Dicker isn’t the only one bemoaning the lack of options. New Yorkers show few signs of helping her, however.
“I really love going to your city, but it makes it difficult to pick up and go places when things are booked up,” says Dicker.
She says it’s a definite inconvenience, but here’s why she feels the passing of time is paying off.
Dicker says people at the airport are very helpful and she’s planning to follow up with one of the post offices in Dallas that she says is still able to accept international mailing. When her mother passed away last year, Dicker relied on these postal services to receive condolences from loved ones back home in Maine.
“It was really nice,” she says. “It meant a lot to be able to e-mail and get a chance to say goodbye and that was the most pleasant part of it.”