Tuesday, 7 October 2014

The Not-So-Seasoned Traveller

We finally managed a family holiday on Hamilton Island. 

For the three people that read my blog, you will know that the last time we went to Hamilton Island, it was fairly disastrous with fever, tonsillitis and babies falling off steps. We spent more time at the island’s medical centre than the pool. While most holidaymakers don’t even realise there is a medical centre, my six year-old can give you directions.

So these holidays, rather tentatively, we tried again and it was a rip roaring success. No dramas, all-round good health and many nights of unbroken sleep. These days, it doesn’t get better than that.

The airport however was an eye-opener. It’s been a while since I travelled by plane (probably last trip to Hamilton) and things have changed. Not the flying bit - still a big heavy object that manages to stay in the air. Rather the bits prior to that. Like when I bought four plane tickets online, obviously for a family. One credit card transaction. Four transaction fees. Still don’t get that one…

When we arrived at the airport, we grabbed a couple of trolleys. We didn’t have to go far but I have fond memories of being pushed on airport trolleys as a child and thought the girls would enjoy it.

Never again. Four dollars each! Non-refundable! One poolside drink gone on about 50 metres of transportation. I’ll carry them all one by one next time.

Next we had to check in and get boarding passes. That was fine. Done that before. But we also had to physically check in our own luggage. No longer do you wait until a cheery face behind a desk does it all for you while they chat about where you’re going on your holiday. As I said, it’s been a while.

Needless to say we didn’t know what to do. We caught the attention of an assistant who was not at all cheery. In fact she seemed rather annoyed.

‘What seems to be the problem?’

I tried to make a joke about my lack of experience in baggage handling but couldn’t crack a smile. My husband attempted to put a bag on the conveyer belt.

‘No, not that way,’ she snapped.

Yes well that’s why we asked you. That’s why it’s better to have people trained to do this rather than replacing them with machines.

I shouldn’t complain. We had a great holiday. Next time I will know exactly what to do. Hopefully the same assistant will be there and see me achieve a successful check-in and be proud. She might even smile.

But the holiday itself was fantastic.

Apart from losing the three-year old not long after we arrived. We did find her so that worked out well.

After that, it was fantastic.

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