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Wednesday, October 4, 2023

New data reveals there is almost a 1 in 1o chance you could miss your flight

Priority Pass conducted a survey with 1,720 respondents to learn about people’s airport routines and the stresses they experience whilst travelling. The survey asked which areas of the departure lounge they visit, which scenarios they find the most stressful, and what they worry about the most whilst travelling. You can see the full piece here.

The most and least stressful moments at the airport

Almost half of the people surveyed agreed that baggage collection was the most stressful part of travelling, closely followed by passing through security (47%), and waiting for your transfer (47%). One in three people said that the most stressful part of travelling was during the flight, with a further 35% saying they found landing the most stressful.

Boarding, finding your seat on the plane and the flight itself all came at the bottom of the list, making them the least stressful moments whilst travelling.

The top 10 most stressful moments at the airport:

Rank (most to least stressful)

Stressful Moment

% of stressed people


Baggage collection



Passing security



Transfers (waiting)



Checking in



Packing for your holiday



Travelling to the airport



Getting to the boarding gate



Arrival at the airport



During the flight landing



Storing your hand luggage


What are people most worried about might happen at the airport?

People’s biggest worry whilst travelling is not getting to the airport on time with 63% of people worrying about getting stuck on the way to the airport. Meanwhile, the second biggest worry for UK travellers is their luggage getting lost, with 61% saying they worry about this happening whilst travelling; compare this to only 41% of people worrying about losing their child.

Additionally, almost 3 in 5 people (57%) are worried about misplacing their passport or missing boarding the plane. Of the people surveyed, 25% of people were more worried about their flight being delayed than being stopped at security.

The busiest and quietest parts of the departure lounge

Over a third of people visit the pubs and restaurants at the departure lounge but as little as 4% celebrate the start of their holiday by sipping on a glass of bubbles at the airport champagne bar. The most popular and busiest part of the airport is the duty-free store with almost half (49%) of people taking a look around for what tax-free deals they can find.

On average, travellers in the UK give themselves 1 hour and 14 minutes in the departure lounge,

Here are the top 5 busiest areas:


Area of the departure lounge

% of people that visit


Duty-free ‘store’



Coffee Shop









High street fashion shops


The most common mishaps at the airport

19% of people admitted their luggage has been over the weight limit in the past. However, those travelling for business or aged between 35 – 44 are the worst when it comes to exceeding their baggage allowance, with 22% of solo business travellers and 35 -44 year-olds admitting their luggage has been over the weight or size limit.

Almost one in ten (9%) people in the UK admit to having missed a flight but solo leisure travellers and people aged between 16 – 24 are the most likely to miss their flight, with 1 in 8 (15.90%) solo travellers and more than one in ten (12%) of 16 – 24 year-olds admitting they have missed a flight before.

Nationally, only 6% of people have forgotten their passport. However, men are more than twice as likely to forget their passport than women, with 8% of men admitting to having forgotten their passport, compared to 3.78% of women. Additionally, it is business travellers that are the traveller type most likely to forget their passport, with 16% saying they’d forgotten it.

Despite 65% of people travelling with their family saying they give themselves between 30 minutes and 2 hours to spend in the departure lounge, 1 in 5 (20%) family travellers have had to sprint to the gate.

Andy Besant, Travel Experience Director, from Priority Pass comments:

“The survey has shown some very interesting results, particularly relating to people’s worries and stresses whilst travelling. It seems that people are more stressed when preparing for their flight and thinking about passing security, checking in, packing and travelling to the airport and less stressed about the flight itself. Almost 1 in 10 have missed their flight which is quite a shock considering you need to be at the airport 2 hours before your flight.

“Our lounges are designed to take the stress out of travelling, and with over 1200 lounges around the world, we would hope to be able to accommodate as many worried or stressed travellers as possible to try and make their journey as stress-free as possible.”

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