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The One Thing You Can Do Ahead of Time to Avoid a Canceled Flight

The only thing worse than the middle seat on an airplane? No seat at all. But there is one easy trick that can help minimize the risk of getting your flight canceled (or severely delayed).

The trick: Before booking, check the route's on-time performance. It takes two seconds (we like using FlightStats, but individual airline sites are also required to publish this information) and could potentially save you a whole lot of hassle.

Why it’s helpful: Let’s say you’re planning a trip from New York City to Knoxville. A quick check on FlightStats reveals that United Airlines flight 4361 from Newark has an on-time performance of just 44 percent, with 3 percent of flights canceled and a staggering 50 percent delayed. Yikes. So in this case, you might want to consider flying out of LaGuardia instead. (Delta flight 3960 leaves around the same time and has a 76 percent on-time track record.)

So no more canceled flights? It’s not a foolproof method, but when it comes to those super-important trips (like to your best friend’s wedding or nana’s 90th birthday), isn’t anything you can do to minimize travel hiccups worth a shot? Now if only securing that aisle seat were as easy. 

RELATED: 10 Amazing Tricks for Scoring Cheaper Airfare

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