The website of Tim Chambers, strategic advocate for the rest of us, living in Malvern PA.
Top Ten Reasons not to travel with Tim
10) Leave for airport in pouring rain. Drive 10 miles with water so thick on roadway sounds like it's scouring the undercoating off the Murano.
9) Trip from car park to terminal is longer than usual since driver mistakenly takes me to arrivals and not departures. Driver apologizes for not being awake yet. Comforted that he has the wheel.
8) Tug breaks while backing out plane. Delay of 20 minutes while it is fixed. (Is this the only plane tug available in the whole airport?)
7) Eight planes on runway waiting to fly south - right into large thunderstorm. After 15 minutes all planes are re-routed out over New Jersey and onto the ocean before turning south - delay of 30 minutes enroute. (45 minute layover?)
6) Arrive 1 hour+ late for connecting flight and enroute to gate from runway arrival gate changes 3 times. First and third time are same gate, but inaccessible due to runway construction - must go to other side of concourse. Original concourse was same as connecting flight - now different concourse. Tim does an OJ.
5) Arrive at airport early for return flight - 20th passenger in line. No sweat. Counter not open for Delta but is for all other airlines - line extending. As counter opens announcement that all computers are down and we will be issuing handwritten boarding passes. Uh-oh!
4) Earlier flight than mine takes precedence at counter - my 20th spot in line is passed by 100+ people trying to make an earlier flight with counter operating on manual. Faxes (yes faxes) with the flight seating arrive late from main office. Computer still down. Finally make it through line only to go to 100+ person line waiting to enter the security line which is 50+ people. Queue formed to prevent escalator from dumping people at the top into a pile. Arrive at actual gate within 30 minutes. captain and co-pilot taking handwritten boarding passes at gate for entrance to plane (Hmmm... they are multi-faceted).
3) Flight on time after connection - relax for 87 minute final leg. No first class available even though screen shows 4 seats not reserved. Darn. Arrive in good weather early and are positioned in farthest corner of airport off runway to await a gate. 4 gates for Delta - 1 AIR FRANCE plane at Delta gate, 1 flight due to leave in 25 minutes and 2 planes with mechanical problems unable to be towed away from gate to allow us to arrive.
2) Whoopee! 25 minute delay for departing flight gives way to a 10 minute call to return to gates. Moving towards gate and awaiting entrance to concourse. Why are we turning away? A- Concourse has had a security breach - all planes not leaving till resolved. Back to square 0. Return 30 minutes later - here we go! Uh-oh , why are we turning away again? E Concourse has had security breach - all planes grounded. back to square 0! 30 minutes later back again to concourse area - enroute ALL the planes are backing out in front of us! 7 planes later we negotiate our planes way to gate. Finally on home turf after 1 hour 45 minutes on ground after 1 hour 27 minutes in air.
1) Terminal E on Friday afternoon packed due to all delays (including our arrival which should have left by time we arrived at gate ON TIME). Exit area next to security has been re-built with a corridor now 4 foot wide. Exiting passengers from concourse bottleneck at exit. 15 minutes to negotiate leaving concourse.
(Above occurred all in one round-trip)