Sunday, June 15, 2008

Bucharest, Romania June 2008: Departing the Henri Coanda Airport

15jun08 Henri Coanda International, Bucharest Romania (OTP)

It was exactly 5:00a when we arrived at the airport. We paid our cab drive in a combination of USD and LEI. It was pretty clear that he charged us more than he should have, but I let it slide. He had actually had the meter running as he was waiting for us.

Despite the rain, the airport was bustling with activity. There were the flights to Paris-Charles de Gaulle (CDG) at 6:50a, the 6:00a to Amsterdam (AMS) on KLM and Lufthansa’s A321 service to Frankfurt (FRA) at 6:00a. We could take anyone that had room, our first choice was Air France at 6:50a, but that was full so we decided to try our luck with KLM at 6:00a. We knew that the Lufthansa flight at 6:00a was a sure thing in case the KLM flight crapped out.

We checked with the Menzies agent who checks in both the Air France and KLM flights and he said that both the Air France and KLM flights were overbooked, but we should wait and he will advise. We waited until 5:30a at which point, they said that we would get a Business Class seat. A few minutes later, we got the bad news that due to a glitch, Economy class was the best they could do today, which for us is just fine.

We immediately made it through security without any incident noticing that the Lufthansa flight to Frankfurt was an Airbus A321 that was painted in the old Lufthansa livery of the early 1900s; it was a beautiful sight to see.

Sadly, we had no time to stop in the stores and get last minute gifts at all. As we were walking to the gate, our names were being paged over the PA system. The same agents who had just checked us in were at the gate as well.

We showed our boarding passed, they took the larger portion and then we boarded. There was actually one other passenger who was behind us as well.

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