A Travellerspoint blog

Australia

The Plane Ride from Hell

-17 °C
View Our wedding and honeymoon on jefranklin's travel map.

The day had arrived for our flight to Santorini; arrival time at Sydney airport was 12 midday, and we were kindly given a lift there by Mike, who was going to be best man at our wedding.

The flight route was Sydney to Bangkok - Bangkok to Zurich - Zurich to Athens and Athens to Santorini. Accompanying us as far as Athens was Heather's mum (and my soon to be mother-in-law), Doris.

The leg from Sydney to Bangkok was British Airways and was packed, as always. As we checked in early, we had a row of 3 seats to ourselves but even so, my shoulders were hanging over the side of the seat into the aisle. Total flying time for this flight was about 10 hours, total sleep: 0 hours.

From Bangkok to Zurich we flew Swissair long haul and although the plane was not full, I still managed to have my shoulders hanging over into the aisle (some space would have been nice...). Total flight time: 12 hours, total sleep: 1 hour approximately (although Heather may dispute that figure!)

The Zurich to Athens leg was also Swissair, except whenever you wanted something it was chargeable (unlike on long haul). Still, by this point I was downing alcohol as if I was about to spend a month in the Middle East, so a little thing like money was not going to stop me. Total flight time, 3 hours, total sleep: 0 hours.

The final leg was on a smally turboprop Olympic Airlines airplane and was pretty packed (with locals). Fortunately, it was a short trip of 45 minutes or so.

Total flying time was just under 26 hours, although by the time you add the time that we hung around airports, it was more like 35 hours. Total sleep was about 1 hour, and I am not too sure of the number of alcholic units consumed :)

Anyway, on landing at Thira, we were relieved to see that our suitcases had made it as well (fortunate, as they contained not only our holiday clothes, but our wedding clothes as well). It's pleasing to know that checking through baggage does tend to work properly. We picked up our hire car, which blended in nicely with local cars because it looked as if it had not been cleaned in its life and had some minor damage (loose trim, broken wing mirror, etc.)

DCP_2124.jpgWe drove straight to our hotel, and caught some much needed sleep. Fortunately, we woke up before sunset and saw our first Santorini sunset - a very romantic end to the plane ride from hell.

More to come later...

Posted by jefranklin 08:00 Archived in Australia Tagged air_travel Comments (0)

Wedding and Honeymoon Planning

Well, that was a pretty interesting week...

I had been starting to get a little concerned that the emails I was sending to the Travel Agency in Greece were not being responded to. Very odd, considering that I was offering them money (the balance that I owed them).

On Tuesday night (Sydney time) I dialled the twelve digit number, armed with my trusty English-Greek dictionary. The following is a transcription of what was said...

"Hello, do you speak English?" (said in Greek)
"Yes"
"I have booked a cruise with you for..."
"Not with me, you will have to speak with Miss X. Hold on please"
I waited for two minutes, then the line dropped.
"F*ck it" and I redialled.
"Hello, I spoke with you a moment ago. May I speak with Miss X, please?"
"One moment"
This time I got through...
"Hello, Miss X"
"Hello, I have a cruise booked with you: the High Plains Drifter"
"Did you not receive our email? The cruise has been cancelled."
"No I didn't."
"OK, I don't have your file now but I will resend you the email."
-- hangs up --
Needless to say, I did not receive an email - so I will let these guys sort it out, or at least my Credit Card company.
So now, I was left without a honeymoon and a potentially pissed off wife-to-be (though she would never admit to it).
After some frantic decision making we have settled on Singapore as our honeymoon.
First port of call, is two nights in the Raffles Plaza
Then five nights on a cruise...
Then back to Raffles for a night before returning home.

Posted by jefranklin 06:43 Archived in Australia Tagged preparation Comments (0)

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