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Delta Air Lines logoThis is a long story. So I'm driving along Interstate 70 in Colorado trying to make my flight from Denver to Minneapolis, Google Maps is telling me I'll be rolling into the airport around 2:30pm, which means that I'll be in great shape, as my flight is at 3:45pm. Then I start hearing on the radio about an accident on I-70 near I-270 and I don't know where that is except that I'm on I-70, and I'm still maybe 45 minutes from the Denver International Airport so I'm not too worried. I come in and around Denver, heading toward the East side of town and out toward the airport, and I hear again on the radio that I-270 and I-70 East are at a standstill because of this accident.

Sure enough, a few minutes later, I hit the bumper to bumper, it is now around 2:15pm and I am still 15 miles from the airport. So, I pull up Google Maps again on my new iPhone 5, find a re-route on some side streets, weave through some traffic to get onto that route, and whamo blamo the phone battery goes dead.

So, now I'm trying to remember what the route looked like, fairly sure I figured it out, and start heading East. Pretty soon I'm seeing airport shuttles and cabs on the same streets, so I know I'm headed the right way, but I'm only going about 30mph. Eventually I pull into Avis, but now it is just after 3:00pm. I hop in their airport shuttle, get to the airport, and am heading straight to security, then realize I can't get through since my battery is dead and it has my boarding pass on it.

Now I have to decide whether I run upstairs to get a boarding pass printed or plug in and wait for my phone to charge up enough to display my boarding pass and hope it lasts long enough to get me through security. I go for the sure thing and the printed boarding pass. Except that when I get up to the Delta Air Lines counter, the kiosk can't print a boarding pass because I am inside 30 minutes to departure.

I tell the gal at the counter I am Gold status and TSA pre-approved and I am sure I can make the flight. She tells me she has to get the supervisor to help me and proceeds to give the supervisor my story. The supervisor is very helpful, and says she can't print a boarding pass inside 30 minutes, but decides to print me an "official business, security clearance" pass so I can get through security quickly.

Of course the minutes are ticking away, so I grab the special security clearance pass, cruise down to security, wait, get through, and now it is 3:30pm. I head down to the tram, and Delta is out on the C gates, so third stop, end of the line. I come out of the tram, up two flights of escalators, and on the way to the gate I see the clock says 3:40. I roll up to my gate at 3:41, and the plane is there, but they've closed the door to the jetway. I go to the gate next door, and they say, yeah they just closed it, you're screwed. Damn.

They were nice enough to book me on the 5:45pm flight and I am now sitting in the bar with my iPhone charging and taking advantage of the free wifi and drinking an IPA. Not all bad!

Update: I just got upgraded to first class, which was not the case on my original flight :-)

Topics: Internet Advertising, Advertising Adventures, Delta Air Lines

Tim Nichols

Written by Tim Nichols

Tim Nichols is a founding partner at ExactDrive, a digital media buying agency with white label, reseller and managed service options available. ExactDrive plans, manages, and optimizes online advertising campaigns with the objective of delivering measurable value and empowering clients to find precisely targeted audiences. ExactDrive has offices in Minneapolis, MN and Milwaukee, WI.

Tim Nichols is also a contributing author on Forbes.com.