Tuesday Travel Tips...If a flight is cheap, there is usually a reason...

In what is to be my first of many Travel Tip Blogs.  This is what I learnt from my flight from Sydney to Zurich via Mumbai:
1.  If a flight is cheap, there is usually a reason... search for it until you find it.
Flying through Mumbai (and probably most of India) requires a fair degree of faith.  Six hours in Mumbai Airport almost completely destroyed my faith in travel at all.  Arriving at the airport we were herded into "groups" of transit travelers.  4 other Australians and myself were placed in the "British Airways, Swiss Airways" box.  Our passports and onward tickets were taken from us and we were told to wait at Gate 15 for "a few hours - maybe one, maybe two".  Through Indian construction and at times the monsoon rain we walked, eventually arriving at Gate 15 to wait.  And wait we did - for 3 1/2 hours.  I had visions of Shantaram in my head.  Imagine what could be done with my passport (with my US visa!) and ticket in 3 1/2 hours?  I was beginning to think I might never leave Mumbai and it was only my new best-friend, a 50 year old Croat-Australian who kept me sane.  Anyway, our passports did turn up and then the second part of the journey began - an excursion to "identify" our checked through luggage.  Down lifts, across more construction, through corridors, into a shoddy mini-bus and eventually to an external hanger and there in front of us was a shopping trolley full of our luggage.  In the middle of essentially an empty hanger.  More visions of Shantaram, this time with drugs involved and a touch of Shapelle Corby, raced through my mind.  Bags identified we were desposited back at Gate 15 for another 3 hour wait.  Mumbai Airport is not Singapore, or even Sydney during renovation.  There was nothing there but ooggling Indian men and some very uncomfortable seats.  But I made it.  And the ticket was cheap!

But I made it to Zurich, which is almost the antithesis of Mumbai Airport.  Clean, quiet and importantly quietly affluent.  There is not a begger on the street, the water is drinkable and the weather a deliciously sunny 20 degrees.  Perfect for warming up my winter skin before Italy!

1 comment:

katie@weheartbooks.com said...

A great post bear - you are already an ace blogger!