So, once we finally get to the airport, say our goodbyes, and get on the airplane, you would think that it would be smooth sailing from there. False. We sat on the airplane wondering when we would take off for about 3 or 4 hours. Hong Kong weather was going haywire, and our captain had no idea when we would be able to leave. Heck, air traffic control didn’t know when we would get to leave. Eventually, we got into the air and made it into Hong Kong at 5pm.
We got our carry-on bags and hurried off the plane to try and make it to our next point – someone who would tell us what to do next. As we talked with some of the attendants, another American that was trying to get onto the same connecting flight to LAX informed us that when our plane had landed, our connecting flight had taken off with standby ticket people in our seats.
We followed two different ladies, and our group ended up being split into two separate lines. We moved to the line for Cathay Pacific. Once we got to the front of the line, we were told that they couldn’t do anything to help us because our starting ticket was through Dragon Air, not Cathay. So, we moved to a line at Dragon Air. Some waited in one line, and I waited in the other. Chaos ensued. We all got to the point of..just give us a flight back to the States. New York, Chicago, LA…just get us back there. And give connecting flights to get to where we need to go from there. Just get us back to the States. We almost got somewhere. And then the booking system crashed.
They apologized profusely and said that they would be putting us up in a hotel for the night. We got stickers to put on, and we got to go through customs. Another Hong Kong stamp for our passport. We followed this lady to where the hotel shuttles are, followed a guy to another place where we would wait once again. Our hotel shuttle finally showed up, and an hour later we were in a Royal Garden hotel. It is 9:50pm. We are given meal vouchers for dinner, breakfast, and lunch along with our room keys. They front desk informs us that dinner would be served on the 3rd floor at 10:15pm.
Steph and I went to our room, dropped off our stuff, and then we headed downstairs to meet up with everyone for dinner. Dinner was amazing. There was all sorts of food – good food. And dessert was amazing. Tiramisu, mousse, brownie things, a huge chocolate fondue fountain with marshmallows and cream puffs to dip in it, as well as a Haagen Daz ice cream bar. I think that everyone had at least two plates of food and then one or more plates of dessert. It was a great way to end the night and have all of us relax after a crazy day.
We woke up early and met downstairs at 5:30am the next morning. When we checked out and turned in our remaining meal vouchers, they handed us sandwiches and orange juice since we would be missing breakfast on the 3rd floor at 6am. We rode back to the airport, and thus began day two of trying to get home.
Chase and I gave up on the lines after a while. We sat on the floor with everyone’s bags and recorded several videos as a form of stress relief.
After 4 1/2 hours of running around, being sent in circles, and standing in multiple lines, all of us FINALLY got tickets to LAX on a flight that would be leaving at 12:55pm.
We made it through security, got another stamp in our passport, emailed our families, got some starbucks for the wait, and then *finally* made it onto the plane which landed up in LAX on April 21, 2012 at 10:40am. It was an extremely long day.