Friday, February 03, 2023

Travel Woes - Flying with Precision

Travel just isn’t the same when everything goes well!

Part 1 Airline

We were flying overnight from Cairo to Arusha with a short layover in Dar Es Salaam. Seems simple enough and we confirmed that our luggage would go straight through although we couldn’t get boarding passes for the 2nd flight until we landed in Dar  

We land in Dar Es Salaam and go begin the immigration process, fill out the landing card, show the lady our Visa, show another guy our Visa, get in line. Not just any line but the slowest line in the entire airport!

Then we notice our bags on the carousel - oh I guess they didn’t get checked through. Pick up our bags and go to find the checkin gate to get our boarding passes. Nope - that’s at another terminal 200 meters down the road. Get to the other terminal, oh our flights have been cancelled. But they’re putting us on an earlier flight to a different airport (Kilimanjaro instead of Arusha)! And it’s already finished boarding! Hurry!

Hurry out to the tarmac and stand for a bit till a bus picks us up to take us to the plane. Oh no someone's picking us up at Arusha and we have no way to contact them. 

We land about 4am and they have buses to take us to the Arusha airport. There are about 30 of us. The bus holds 15. So they order another bus. From the Arusha airport. 2 hours away. 

After about 45 min we get the idea to use a local's phone to call our lodge to let them know what’s happening. Another flurry of activity and we’ve now hired 2 taxis to get us to the lodge. Almost the end of the story but one of the taxis did get pulled over by the police and fined for having bald tires!

Oh the name of the airline? Precision Air!

This is not Kilimanjaro (couldn’t get a clear pic) but her little sister nearby Mount Meru. It was a surprise to see mountains other than Kilimanjaro since that’s all we hear about. 

Part 2 SIM card

It’s pretty easy to get a SIM card for your phone. In most countries. Here in Arusha, 2 guys from the telecom came to the lodge to arrange for our SIM cards. First they took all the information from my passport, then a thumbprint and a photo. This took about 1/2 hour. Then they had to register the SIM card and wait for approval. I’m not sure who approves it but after about an hour we found out we weren’t approved. So they had to register the card in the name of one of the workers at the lodge. This took another 1/2 hour.  I thought I was done then and my phone was at 1% so I went to my room to plug it in. A little while later Ross came to get my phone. Although the SIM card was registered now they had to add the data!

I love travelling. 

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