Example:  Flying Chicago to Denver Roundtrip

Ok, so I made up the “missed plane” statistic.

But, I don’t think I’m wrong.

Here’s the explanation:  when a (over)busy professional books a round-trip ticket from Chicago to Denver, they’re invariably rushing/distracted, etc. when they input their flight times on their smartphone (assuming they do).

So, they neglect to switch the departure time of their return flight — one time zone later — to local time.

“$#@%!” I Mean, “Oops!”

To see the unfortunate consequences, imagine that the hypothetical Chicagoan’s return flight is 3 p.m. Mountain, but they mistakenly input 3 p.m. Central instead (easy to do:  the default time zone is wherever your home is).

On their phone once they’re in Denver, that displays as 4 p.m. — because 3 p.m. Central = 4 p.m. Mountain, one hour later.

Unfortunately, by the time the person realizes they have a 3 p.m., not 4 p.m. flight, they may not be able to get to the airport in time.

Forewarned is forearmed . . .  (you’re welcome).

P.S. The exact same phenomenon applies to any appointments you make while you’re out-of-town, in another time zone.

And I’d further guess the odds of a goof are actually greater when the time zone difference is smaller:  two hours, you’re likely to catch; one hour, you can easily overlook.

See also, “The Human Slingshot”: Criss-Crossing 4 Times Zones in 3 Days“; and “Is That 8 a.m. Mountain, or 8 a.m. Pacific?”

About the author

Ross Kaplan has 19+ years experience selling real estate all over the Twin Cities. He is also a 12-time consecutive "Super Real Estate Agent," as determined by Mpls. - St. Paul Magazine and Twin Cities Business Magazine. Prior to becoming a Realtor, Ross was an attorney (corporate law), CPA, and entrepreneur. He holds an economics degree from Stanford.

Leave a Reply