On the move again ...

Trip Start Sep 21, 2011
Trip End Mar 21, 2012

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Flag of United Kingdom  , England,
Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Up very early this morning and after breakfast, a final check of tickets etc and goodbyes sister Pam drives us the two hundred yards to the bus stop.  Our coach arrives a little late due to heavy traffic - lets hope thats not an omen - and by 08:05 we are on our way.  An uneventful journey gets us to London Hathrow at just after 11:00.  Head straight to check-in and our bags weighed in at 46kg.  Was a little worried we were going to be overweight so was well pleased.  It turned out that Egypt Air allow each passenger two check-in bags each weighing 23kg so a grand total of 46kg per person.  I have never some across such a large allowance !!  We sit outside the terminal building and eat lunch before heading through security and immigration to the departure lounge.  Immigration held a shock in store with the announcement to Jai that she had overstayed her visa !!  I could see the chaps eyes light up.  The visa had actually expired on 1st September but I explained to him that that was the date by which she had to enter the UK and then could stay for up to 180 days but he was having any of it.  I then suggested a second opinion from his supervisor or someone.  He reluctantly agreed and I followed him to an office where surprise surprise the supervisor agreed with me and we were on our way again - a little shaken but not stirred, well not too much.
We were sat down at 12:00 with a 3 hour wait ahead of us.  We baorded the plane pretty much on time to be greeted by the Captain announcing that there was going to be a short delay in take off.  Apparently the Greek Air Traffic Controllers - God bless them - had gone on strike and we wouldnt be able to fly through Greek airspace therefore we required a new flight plan.  We eventually took off about 2 hours late and when we reached Greek airspace we veered east and overflew Turkey before backtracking into Cairo landing at the same time as our connecting flight was due to take off.  We had been assured that all connecting flights would be held at Cairo and sure enough we hurried to the Gate and boarded immediately about midnight.  We sat for a while with no sign of the plane actually moving and then all of the engines shut down and the lights went out.  They soon started up again but this happened four more times over the next 20mins or so.  Finally our Captain came on air to tell us that we were experiencing 'technical difficulties' - rather here than at 30,000ft I thought !!  Eventually we were told to leave the aircraft and sit at the gate again where we were given drinks - not a good sign suggesting that we were going to be here for a while.  1 hour later we were told that the aircraft haddied and would we go to another gate where a new aircraft was waiting for us.  We trekked about 10 miles - well thats what it seemed like - to the new gate which was still locked and unmanned.  We get around to baording and then sit on the plane for an hour or so before we finally leave Cairo behind us.
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Phil on

Nothing more frustrating than delays, but it looks like you had a similar experience to my return flight from Thailand !

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