Tuesday, September 6, 2016

The Problems of a World Traveler: Part Une

Arrived in France - 04 Sep 2016

Sunday morning at Charles de Gaulle (CDG) Aeroport in Paris is definitely something everyone should experience. I can only imagine what it is like on a weekday!

Prelude to my arrival.

My student visa arrived on 28 Aug, and so my cancellation of my flight on 31 Aug was needless, but I felt that it was not going to arrive when it did. So I booked another flight out from Reno to Phoenix, Phoenix to Dallas, then Dallas to CDG. My airline was American - BIG MISTAKE!!!

Problem 1: Phoenix flight is overbooked so people (like me) with Group 4 tickets had to "check our carry-on".  This is common sense, which American Airline employees apparently lack...but would you not ask people who are just flying to Phoenix to check their bags to ensure bags are delivered properly. You see where I am going with this right?

Mood at this point of the trip: Confused

Problem 2: Phoenix was over an hour late...not what someone wants to experience when their lay-over was only for 50 minutes. Tardy plane = missed plane. Okay, this is getting better by every airport I arrive at. So, I ask where my luggage is. I explained her AA staff asked me to check my carry-on so I have nothing now. She checks her screen, and tells me that my baggage is downstairs, 'in the dungeon' were her words. I asked her why are they there? She had no response. Then I asked her an easier question..."Will my baggage arrive with me in Paris?" Assured my baggage "SHOULD" be there. Oh, thank you American Airlines for your compassion, professionalism, and dedication to making my life hell.

Mood update: Frustrated and annoyed

Problem 3: American Airlines (AA) decided to fly me to Chicago O'Hare to spend the night at a Comfort Inn (far cry from the Hilton). I was to leave the following day at 3:40PM to CDG. Great, except I have no toothbrush, tooth paste, night shirt, change of underwear, comb, brush, makeup....you get the point! So I have to buy a charger - only $49.99 at Chicago O'Hare, and of course few personal hygiene items. My shuttle loaded with other AA flyers in the same boat but WITH their baggage are bitching left-and-right about how they will never fly AA again. I get it, but no one is perfect - right? The kicker is I was not asking for perfect, just a safe and comfortable trip.

Mood by this point:  Pissed off

Spent the night at this Comfort Inn, after this idiot at Dallas tells me there is a Hilton right at the airport. Oh, American Airlines....I have no words right now! The motel I am at is on the Bed Bug Registry website = a night of checking the bed every 15 minutes. My legs itched all night at the thought!

Mood Update: If I were the Red Queen, I would be yelling 'off with their heads'.

Flight to Paris actually takes off on time. Impressed. The flight attendant and the gal next to me made the flight very pleasant. So thank you Evy of AA and my seat partner Beth for an enjoyable flight!

Problem 4: Landed after some turbulence that made me nauseous. Got to baggage claim...carry-on is there...good sign. Wait for it.....yup, no checked baggage - nothing, nada, zelch, zero. Go to American Airlines Service Desk and spoke to a kind lady named Lucie. Lucie states on Sunday that my bag should be delivered by Tuesday. I explain my situation in that I am starting school on Monday and going on two mandatory field trips to the Le Boulonnais and Ardennes for six days starting Monday. How am I suppose to go anywhere if I have nothing???

Mood: I better stop here before I say something ugly again about AA. More to follow.