Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Off to China

Who knows if you will get to read these real time or if I will only be able to post them when I get back to Europe - but for those of you who don't know, which is probably most of you, I am heading to Beijing, China for a week. I have told a few people about this, mainly my parents, closest friends and my colleagues at work, but I haven't been overly vocal about it. Let's put it this way - I haven't put it on Facebook yet and depending on whether or not I will be able to access Facebook or not, people might not find out until I get back.

I think travelling through Schipol (the airport in Amsterdam) is going to take some adjusting. Now I am a Star Alliance girl, in fact I have my Altitude 100K with Aeroplan (the old Super Elite) and Schipol is a KLM/Sky Miles airport. Fortunately KLM has status matched my Aeroplan so I also have my Flying Blue Gold with them but I digress. I am flying Lufthansa via Frankfurt to go to Beiiing. I had the option of taking the direct KLM flight, however I opted for Lufthansa for a few reasons. #1 - my aeroplan points. I want to hold on to a high level of status with Aeroplan b/c for me, they have the best benefits (upgrade credits and the best baggage allowance). This flight should net me about 10 000 aeroplan points or so. #2 - I wasn't happy with the KLM business class seats when I moved to The Hague - they didn't seem to recline that far. For this flight I could have flown KLM, Lufthansa, Cathay Pacific or Austrian. I researched out each one's business class, as that is the class that I can fly and although I have heard great things about Cathay Pacific, their points are with oneWorld, which is British Airways, American, etc - and I have been status matched with BA to their highest as well, but it just isn't a good program, so why waste good mile accurage on them. Being that this is a KLM hub, the Lufthansa counter was relegated to the back corner and unless you really look, you can't see the dedicated First/Business/Star Alliance Gold check-in. Now I am a bit of a princess when I travel - I know, surprise, surprise, but this is one of the perks that I enjoy - dedicated check-in. I want to go up to a person and I want to see them tag my bag. I don't want to have to go to a kiosk and do it myself. Well I like I said, the dedicated check-in was buried in the back and I almost used a kiosk to check in but at the last minute spotted the dedicated check-in. I had thought that surely there must be check-in for business!

The my next little bit of hell was the security line-up. In Canada I had my Nexus card (oh how I love you) and as a priority member person with aeroplan, you could go in the "quick" line. Imagine my horror as I joined the regular line up today! It was busy and crowded and once again I thought - surely there must be a line for us special people. I kept looking around for someone to ask but couldn't find anyone. After standing in the line for about 2 minutes, I once again spotted a sign up ahead for Priority Members, so I had to make my way out of the line and quickly entered the Priority Line - much, much better and much, much more what I am used to! :-) The only crap thing was there was this little kid who needed a good spanking. He was about 2 1/2 years old and throwing a huge fit, that lasted a good 5 minutes b/c his monther wouldn't carry him. How could she - she also had a set of 5 month old twins in car seats that she was also trying to get through security. Fortunately she did have her dad with her (or at least I hope he was her dad). Even after they go through security and into the main hall, the kid kept on screaming for no apparent reason. Spanking if you ask me!

Now security here - you have to take out EVERYTHING that is electronic, including iPads, phones, cameras, computers and all chargers and plug-ins. Normally it's not a biggy as I pack with my laptop close to the top - easy to get in and out but the rest of it, it was buried here and there. I think to be quick and efficient at security and this time I wasn't as I had to dig through my bag to find everything, and then put it back when I got through. I am going to have to rethink my Schipol security strategy.

Getting back to being the 2nd class citizen in this airport, I am currently sitting in the Serviceair lounge which

1 comment:

JB said...

So here we are stuck in mid sentence is some hoity toity lounge in the Netherlands