Musical Gates


This is funny. You know how big O’Hare is? It has a nice layout but can force you to perform some exercise. This week, our flight attendant on board announced our connecting gates as we taxied to our arrival gate. I assessed where my walk would be by studying the terminal diagram in the inflight magazine. Not too bad a walk.

I go to the gate.

Wrong city. I waited a few minutes and read the scrolling messages on the terminal monitor. Sure enough, my flight was scheduled at that gate but had been moved to a different gate. Note to self: this gate change occurred during the 3 to 4 minute walk from the plane. Only one terminal over, so not too difficult to find.

I arrive at the new gate, confirmed my flight on the monitor, and took a seat. Observed a captain flying as a passenger with his daughter, and another captain asking for a jumpseat on our flight. After a half hour, the captain next to me jumped up and said “oop”, new gate, we’ve moved. My flight was moved again to a 3rd gate.

Only one terminal over yet again, but all the way down to the end of the terminal so it was a long walk. Funny how 8 minutes later, you’re suddenly hanging out with the same 120 people but 495 miles away in a different location. No chairs at this gate, we all had to stand. The poor woman in the full length leg cast on crutches was asked to step aside to allow the first class passengers to board. :imp: And both captains, the one looking for the jumpseat ride, and the one traveling as a passenger, changed to a completely different flight.

I had another funny story once when they kept changing gates on me and during the long walk between gates, they cancelled the flight and the gate agent seemed a bit perturbed I didn’t hear the announcement during the walk. And another time, during a long walk in O’Hare between changed gates, they changes gates again before I even got to the 2nd gate, and the new gate was back where the first one was, at the opposite end of the entire airport :open_mouth: . I think I killed about 6 miles in half an hour and I was plain worn out by the time I boarded. Can we at least have some fast music while we do this?

What are some of your musical gate stories?

p.s. This only happens when I can’t find a nonstop.


I have been very fortunate. i have only had a gate change on me twice. i was flying ORD- RSW on AA and they changed the gate, only a few gates down. and another time i was on United, i checked in for my flight ORD- FRA and looked at the boarding pass, i took the escalator up, rechecked the monitors and saw the gate had changed, fortunately the gate was right there.


While I can’t say I can recall any gate changes, I can say that I’ve been delayed on the tarmac a couple of times to wait for a gate to open up after arriving. The first time was on a vacation charter plane stopping in Atlanta to pick up more pax. We waited a good 25 to 30 minutes there. The other time we only had to wait about 10 minutes or so.

While I imagine gate changes are not a rare occurence, both responses in this thread apparently happened at ORD…


i think iv only ever had one gate change…but it was in the same concourse just a few gates down :smiley:


I had a gate change my last flight on Skywest 3927 from SLC to SEA. It was only from gate B8 to B12. At the new gate our CRJ 200 had a problem and it was going to take a long time to fix so SKW went to their hanger and pulled out a new plane. It was N447SW, the aircraft I flew on a week earlier on my way departing SLC to TUL. :laughing:


At ORD at least there’s the UA theme song playing as you’re walking through the “drug trip” tunnel. That always speeds me up.


In the interest of accuracy, for most of the moving sidewalk ride, passengers are treated to a loop from Brian Eno’s Music for Airports*. Only when getting on or off the sidewalk, does the Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue, used in UA advertising, sting the rider.

Edit to Add that I always have an overpowering desire to by wallpaint after a trip through the tunnel.

I swear to God* that the original title of Music for Airports was Music for People Waiting to Die, but I can’t actually find any documentation to support that.

Or the diety(ies) of your choice.