Monday, February 7, 2011

Waiting Room

When you have a stopover somewhere on a trip and change airlines, generally, you can leave the airport and do whatever you like until your next flight. This is what usually happens to me. You go through customs, collect your bags and then lug them around until you can check into your next flight. This is especially pleasant when you have to carry a bike around.

This time however, I made a fatal error. My first flight was to Singapore via emirates, then after a 10hr stopover, I continue on to Mumbai with Jet Airways which, to be honest, I had never heard of. So that I didn't have to take carry on luggage, I checked in everything except my laptop, assuming that I could collect my bags in Singapore. This way, you can go for a quick exit off the plane and don't have to battle hundreds of other people searching for their stuff in the overhead lockers.

The problem is, apparently, Jet Airways is the same as Emirates and my luggage is checked in all the way to Mumbai. This now means two things. 1: I have no fresh shirt, socks or deodorant. 2: I am trapped within the airport for the next ten hours and can't leave.

Sure, The Singapore airport is pretty big and if you like to buy duty free alcohol, electronics and chocolate, you would love it, but if you have very little currency and can't take more than 100ml of liquid on a plane, it is a little boring.

So far I have identified a few things: Dunkin Donuts does not make good coffee. Dunkin Donuts does make good donuts. Starbucks makes better coffee than Dunkin Donuts (but only just). It can take almost 30min to walk the entire length of the 'B' gates, of which you are indoors the entire way. Free Internet is extremely slow and duty free really isn't that cheap.

So now I am half way through my ten hour wait and looking for things to do. I am considering buying another shirt to replace my checked in luggage and am wondering how long I can ride around on the trams between terminals before someone kicks me off. Alternatively, I could take up plane spotting as I have seen several come and go in my time here.

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