Sunday........Losing my boarding pass in Miami
Washington Travel Blog› entry 103 of 129 › view all entries
Left for the airport at 1/4 to 5 am! Arrived at around 5:30 for a 7:05 flight, to find that it isnâ€™t leaving until 8:30. However Iâ€™m flying American Airlines and there is an Admiralâ€™s Club, the equivalent of the Qantas Club, so I wait there until itâ€™s time to leave.
We get a really good breakfast on the flight. Yoghurt, American equivalent of Corn Flakes, milk, banana, big packet of trail mix, coffee etc. (Business class)
When I arrive in Miami I go through Customs, declaring one packet of shortbread biscuits as food, as required. I have a theory that if you declare something, you get through customs quicker, particularly if youâ€™re a certain age, sex and nationality.
I have some spare time, so ask a taxi driver how much for a 30 minute tour of Miami? We settle on USD27 and off we go. He goes over the 1/2 hour and I tell him that I have to go back right now. I think he thinks that Iâ€™ll pay more for a longer tour, but those whoâ€™ve followed my travels will know that Iâ€™ve been caught out before. This driver gets USD27, no more.
When Iâ€™m about to go through the security screening thereâ€™s this really odd woman who screams (and I mean screams) at me because I go to put my things on the belt before her.
I go to the counter at the gate and tell a clerk, who is totally unhelpful and doesnâ€™t know what to do. We have conversations like:
Where did you lose your ticket? I donâ€™t know, if I knew where I would go and find it.
My suitcase is on the plane. Well, itâ€™s only a domestic flight, your bag will just go without you and youâ€™ll stay here.
Iâ€™ve told two supervisors, I canâ€™t do anything. Is that a supervisor? Yes. OK Iâ€™ll go and talk to her. Supervisor of course doesnâ€™t want to know me.
My problem was that I had a round the world ticket and the ticket had been torn off and attached to my boarding pass, which Iâ€™d lost. So by the airline putting both things together, you lose both. Managua had issued both boarding passes at 5:30 this morning.
Iâ€™ve never lost a boarding pass before, but obviously Iâ€™m not the first person this has happened to.
Ok, so what exactly is the problem? I donâ€™t have a voucher for the flight. But I have a flight from Washington DC to New York on the same voucher. I can use that voucher, but then will be stuck in Washington. So Iâ€™m given two options, stay in Miami and my bag goes Washington (they x ray bags here, so they donâ€™t take your baggage off if you donâ€™t get on the plane), or use the other American Airlines voucher and be stuck in Washington. Obviously I choose to go to Washington; I figure the staff there canâ€™t be as unhelpful as these ones. All the time Iâ€™m cool but assertive.
Hurrah I get another boarding pass! Two guys come up to me separately and then another guy later. Iâ€™m congratulated on my handling of the situation and they obviously didnâ€™t think much about how I was treated. The staff were just so unhelpful and quite rude. The third guy also suggests that I go to the Admiralâ€™s Club when we land in Washington. This I do; they are very apologetic and very annoyed with what Miami has done and tell me that Iâ€™ll be able to fly to NY tomorrow night as planned, without a voucher. Hurrah for sanity and commonsense!
Get a cab for Holiday Inn Capital, around USD9. Book a night tour of the city. Have a salad and glass of wine and keep checking the foyer as tour bus is supposed to leave at 7:15. At 7:20 I sit in the foyer to finish the glass of wine. When the bus hasnâ€™t come by 7:35 I go over and speak to the tour organizer. Oh, sheâ€™d forgotten I was there. Doesnâ€™t matter, I have a tour tomorrow and itâ€™s a very nice hotel with hot water, wifi etc.