Sunday, May 20, 2012

Travel Day: The Endless Journey

My meeting ended about 1.5 hours early around 1:30p, but my flight wasn't until 6:15pm. I checked to see if there was an earlier flight and there was one at 5:00pm. So I had the Ramada call a cab to the airport so that I could get there by 4:00p. They sent a car service and I was so glad they did because I did not want to sit in a sketchy taxi. The best part was that they are a flat rate and only ended up being $5 more than the cab from the airport the previous day. Totally worth the price. Traffic was bad so the driver took side streets the entire way. When I arrived at SJC I used the kiosk to get on the standby list for the earlier flight and my bags were tagged and I was set to go. I waited by the earlier flight's gate but I was never called. It turns out that my original flight was about 20 minutes delayed. So my wait was even longer.

My flight was packed to the gills and the flight was really short. I think it was only about 50 minutes. The weird thing about this flight was that our plane kept climbing and climbing and we leveled-off for only about 5 minutes before starting the descent. I thought it was odd because the plane kept increasing power and I could feel that we were ascending. Even looking out the window it felt unusually high. The captain said we were at 39,000. I think most intra-California flights are less than or around 30,000ft. Also, we didn't fly down the coast like most flights I have been on from Oakland and San Francisco. It's been over a year since I have flown in or out of San Jose, so I have no idea if that was unusual or not. It's a much shorter flight when they don't fly down the coastline.

Anyway, the drama didn't start until I landed. My bag made the earlier flight so I didn't need to wait at all. I just went to the Southwest baggage office and there was my bag. Since I left for only 1 day, I parked in the new lot adjacent to the terminal. They have this parking ticket kiosk thing that you have to pay before you go to your car and I put in my ticket in, paid with my credit card, then the ticket didn't come out. I could hear a grinding sound like it was spitting the ticket out, but it wasn't coming out. The screen said to take the ticket. Soon after, the screen went from "take the ticket" to "cancel" to "closed". Now I was screwed because I couldn't leave the parking structure without my ticket and without paying. So I pressed the little phone button on the machine and explained my situation. They first sent 2 women up who didn't have the correct key to open the machine. Then they called the supervisor and he didn't have it either. He leaves and then comes back without the key again. He tells me to just go get my car and go down to the cashier booth. So I leave hoping that they would sort it out by the time I reach the exit in my car. Well they hadn't. When I got to the cashier booth they were still trying to figure it out. The same two women were on the phone with some man. One woman kept going on about how I couldn't have paid, "There is no way you paid," she said and I told her that I put my card in and everything, otherwise the machine would not have been giving me back the ticket. Not the brightest. So they had to track my credit card number to see that I actually paid in order to let me out. I told them that I needed a receipt so I needed the proof too. Eventually the figured it out all the while they had to divert traffic away from my lane because of my situation. By the time I left the parking structure, it was about 45 minutes after I had landed and none of that time was devoted to waiting for my bags. What a crazy day.

1 comment:

  1. Hahaha. They probably wasted more money on wages than on the actual ticket there. They should've refunded you for your time.