As I wheeled my little hand luggage cart well past midnight through the terminals at Singapore Changi Airport for a third time last night, it occurred to me that the way in which I travel could quite possibly drive someone else nuts. Because it’s certainly driving me potty.
The problem is, when you have convoluted travel arrangements, part booked by others, and not enough time to think things through sensibly, it’s easy to make one simple decision that has a ridiculously wearing knock on effect.
My flights to & from Singapore were booked externally, and I was responsible for getting myself to Bali & back in between.
So I booked an 0925hrs flight to Bali, thinking that would give me an extra day on the island. HUGE mistake: I was so tired from only 4hrs sleep (stayed too late at the dinner for Roland Mouret) that when I arrived in Bali that I ended up sleeping most of the afternoon. I should just have booked a later flight.
That one error was was then compounded as, instead of of flying later on KLM with its generous allowances, the early am flight was on AirAsia, the local budget airline, which only allows one hand item of 7kg.
When I arrived at Changi for the AirAsia flight I knew I was already overweight in my big case (presents etc.), so because of the strictly enforced one case/7kg limit, I cldn’t do my normal trick of taking the heavy stuff and splitting it between my handbag & cabin case and hoping no one weighed them. That meant I had to leave my stuffed Tumi cabin bag at Changi Left Luggage.
That all makes perfect sense, right? Except that last night I landed from Bali airside in Terminal 1, Left Luggage is landside in Terminal 1, check in for Singapore Airlines to London is in Terminal 3, and the Transit Hotel I had booked for the night was Terminal 1 airside (because I wanted to use the Terminal 1 swimming pool in the morning).
So, instead of packing in the comfort of my W Bali hotel room, then checking my bags through to London from Bali, staying airside at Changi as a transfer passenger, and then taking the skytrain from the transit hotel in the am to my plane, I spent an hour and a half last night like a flipping hamster on a wheel.
I had to collect my big case, clear Customs & Immigration, retrieve my Tumi from two floors below in the basement, repack everything on the floor in a corridor next to the car park, cunningly stashing the heavy stuff in my handbag, – I was up to 40kgs, on a combined 27kg allowance after a present buying session in Seminyak, zoom over to Terminal 3 on the airtrain, check-in for my flight, go through Immigration again, catch the airtrain back to terminal one airside, then run for 10 minutes through terminal 1 to the Transit Hotel to check-in – arriving a hot & sweaty mess a mere 3 minutes before my booking expired. (Because I was wearing all my heavy jewellery, any accessory I cld drape over me, and a lot of clothing to keep my luggage weight down.)
All that hassle for one simple decision. Please: do not be me. Think about tired-ness, and budget airline luggage allowances and not trying to be flipping superwoman.