Tuesday, October 14, 2014

What I thought was the end of the story...

... Wasn't.

We got to the airport in Taipei on Sunday and waited for our flight to Manila. The time to board came and went and then we were told that the plane would leave an hour late, which was a problem because we had about an hour layover to get our flight home. Ugh. (Incidentally, they told us that the lateness was due to the plane coming in late from the last flighty, but it was already there! Virgin America can turn over a plane in 15 minutes, so I have no idea why it took them an hour and a half to do so!).

Ok, so we board and fly. Then we get to the gate and just sit there inside the plane for 15 minutes because 2 planes were trying to get to the same gate at the same time. You can imagine me and Erin at this point, doing the same dance that you do when you have to pee... We then jam up the ramp and are told that we have to go to the transfer desk because we have to go through security. Whatever. We go to the transfer desk and are told to sit in their holding pen while we wait for someone to walk us to security (why???). We are super late at this point and stressed so we are just staring at the woman and keep asking to please be let to go. Finally they take us to normal, vanilla security (we could have just gone there ourselves) and then AGAIN through the exact same security 10 feet inside of that, at the gate. It's as if they just don't trust those guys standing literally 10 feet away...

Anyway, yay!! We made it. Lots if stress, but we are there! Once again, our board time comes and goes and then our fly time comes and goes. Nothing is said.

Finally, someone comes on the PA saying it will be delayed 45 mins.

Wash. Rinse. Repeat like 3 times.

Finally at 12:30am they start reading out names. My name and Erin's name are both read out, so we go to stand in a huddled mass of concerned people who are told by a totally terrified and incompetent girl that we must go back to the transfer desk with no explanation of why. This is a bunch of Americans, so obviously no one moves and people start asking for a manager. We have one lady who takes charge, who speaks Phillipeano, and gets the skinny: the flight is cancelled and we have to go through immigration because they are putting us in a hotel.

Long story slightly less long, at like 1:30am we are taken to a casino hotel in Manila and given rooms and vouchers for food. We are shuttled back to the airport at 8:30 the next morning for a noon flight, which turned out to also be an hour late, but whatever. We finally got home at 10 am on Monday...

The actual accommodations on the plane were delightful with screens and actually really great leg room (the same amount I had paid Cathay Pacific 2.5 x that amount for on the way out), and the food was decent! So, I'd say, if you are totally fine with a random departure and arrival time, Phillipeans airlines is actually pretty ok. Just don't have a connecting flight!

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