Getting stressed for delayed flight?? That’s nothing compared to all of our airport dramas, imagined spending the night sleeping in the airport, spending time at your holiday destination with your luggage missing for 3 freaking days, or missing flight TWICE??

Hong Kong

Holiday is always exciting, But there’s one thing that I hate the most, it’s all the hassle in the airport. Having many unpleasant travel experiences always left me feeling anxious whenever we’re in the airport.

Imagine how much time wasted to drive to the airport, waiting for the checkin process, queuing for immigration, taking off you watches, taking out your laptop, putting off you jacket for A FEW TIMES for security check?? Too much hassle, too much time wasted, too tiring, too stressful. I wish we have Doraemon’s magic “Anywhere Door”.

In this post, AnakJajan are going to share with you unpleasant experiences we had, hopefully it can help you to avoid such drama or at least be prepared and know how to deal with it. Countless of delayed flight dramas are not included in this post since it’s pretty normal already๐Ÿ™„ and you won’t find it juicy to read hahaaha. Sooo LET’S START THE DRAMA~~

Kuala Namu Airport – Medan

Case: Change of boarding gate, resulting too late to reach the boarding gate.
AnakJajan still remember it clearly it was our first airport disaster. We were supposed to fly to Bangkok for another trip after our holiday in Singapore. Well in this case, we were still too young and inexperienced, we arrived at the new boarding gate too late.

In normal case we would have made it since we arrived in the original boarding gate just in time before they close the gate, but it turned out that we were not aware that they have changed the gate into other gate that was located FAR FARRRRRRRR away from each other, so by the time we reached the new gate, they won’t allow us to go inside anymore, and we can see our luggages being thrown out from the plane.

What to do??
There’s nothing we can do other than buying new plane tickets aka “terima nasib”๐Ÿ˜‚, luckily we had enough of SGD left + extra USD cash to buy another tickets.

Lessons Learned??
– Be aware of your boarding time, remember that boarding time is different with departure time.
– Allow enough time for check-in, security check and immigration process since it can be very time consuming.
– Always check announcement in case there is a change of your boarding gate.
– Make sure to always have enough “emergency fund” (be it cash or credit card) for unexpected incident.

Case: Wrong timezone.
It was totally our fault, we forgot about the time difference (Singapore’s local time is 1 hour ahead of Jakarta) and set our alarm based on Jakarta’s timezone. By the time we reached the airport, the boarding gate was already closed (I know the drama is still lame, wait till the next episodes below, they are WAY MORE JUICY๐Ÿ˜‚). Now you know why I have a love and hate relationship with Changi Airport.

What to do??
Take responsibility and purchase new plane tickets. In unexpected event like this, having Credit Card with enough limit is totally lifesaver.

Lessons Learned??
– Be aware of timezone differences.
– It would be nice if you keep extra USD bills in your wallet or you can prepare credit card with enough limit for unexpected events. Do you know that you can always call Bank’s Call Center and ask for Temporary Limit Increase (pengajuan kenaikan limit sementara) before traveling?? It’s best to request it 2 weeks before traveling, they usually will grant your request and the new limit will be valid for a few months.

Case: Aircraft with smaller capacity.
The aircraft that was supposed to take us was out-of-order so the airline has to use other aircraft that has smaller capacity. For example Plane A can take 150 passengers but they have to change it to Plane B with 100 passengers capacity, and yesss you’re right, we were the unlucky 50๐Ÿ™„

What to do??
Initially the junior staff was going to move us to midnight flight if I’m not mistaken we have to wait for 12 freaking hours in the airport, THAT’S CRAZY!! Luckily me and Mr. Jajan were not alone, we got travel mates that were furious and keep pushing the airport staff.
In the end, the senior staff took over and got us business class seat on afternoon flight plus airport lounge access since we have to wait for 5hours if I’m not mistaken.

Lessons Learned??
– Online check-in might help you secure your seat.
– There’s nothing wrong with being a little more pushy in demanding your rights but know your boundary. In our case, if our travel mates weren’t pushy, we would have been given midnight flight.

Case: Aircraft cannot reach the airport due to storm.
There was a huge storm in Tokyo and it got worse in Narita airport. Our flight was delayed only being told that IT WAS CANCELLED on midnight 01.00AM!! To make it worse the staff told us they’re only able to fly us back in the next 2 days, CRAZY!! We have spent the last of our Japanese yen, how can we survive in Tokyo for another 2 days??

In the end after all the hassle, after following one of the passenger’s advice to call their boss with higher authority, they got the seats for us on partner airline on the next day 18.00 + lounge access, literally 24 hours from initial schedule.

Apparently 90% of flights during that night got cancelled since the aircrafts were not able to reach Narita due to storm and the whole airport was full of stranded passengers with no airport hotel room available, luckily it happened in Narita where everything is already being planned. All stranded passengers were given sleeping bag, air mattress, food, water and the whole airport has turned into shelter. It was such a tiring yet one of the most memorable travel disaster.

What to do??
Stay calm because anger won’t get you home faster. Keep yourself updated.

Lessons Learned??
– Sh*t happens.

Case: Cancelled flight with no notification.
This one was still fresh in our minds. We book a flight from Jakarta to Christchurch which includes 2 places to stop over, Singapore and Sydney.

Upon arriving in Singapore, we were told that our flight got cancelled but they have moved us to partner flight with practically the same schedule with new route, from Jakarta-Singapore-Sydney-Christchurch become Jakarta-Singapore-Melbourne-Christchurch. Luckily it was drama free but IT LED US TO WORST NIGHTMARE.(check the next episode)

Case: Luggage got lost due to change of flight.
Upon arriving in Christchurch, we couldn’t find our luggages.
Apparently after moving us to partner flight, instead of printing new luggage barcode, they only put notes in it and it got lost somewhere.

After reporting our missing luggage, Me and Mr. Jajan were given care-packages consisting of 1 thin t-shirt, deodorant, sunblock, toothbrush and hairbrush, that’s all, IN THE FREAKING WINTER! Luckily we put our winter jacket & phone charger in our hand-carry luggage.

There were 2 missing luggages, one is mine and one is Mr. Jajan’s. Upon arriving in our hotel, we immediately notify the hotel staff about our missing luggage. Gotta give the staffs in Ibis Christchurch DOUBLE THUMBS UP in being sooo helpful. The staffs were very attentive, one of the staffs even tried to cheer me up, they helped us to call, follow-up and push the airport staff in finding our luggage as soon as possible.

The first luggage (Mr. Jajan’s) was found and delivered to our hotel on the 2nd day, and then mine was found and delivered on the 3rd day. Both came in a sad condition, one was cracked broken on the edges, and the other one with missing key parts.

Luckily we were not alone in this trip, we travelled with sis and bro, so on the first 3 days, we survived with borrowed outfits from head to toe hahaha ๐Ÿ˜‚.

What to do??
– Ask for contact number and the person in charge. Keep yourself active in following-up the status of your luggage. There’s nothing wrong with demanding and pushing the staff to find your lost luggage as soon as possible, but ask them nicely and you have to give them space and time to do their job properly.
– Notify the receptionist of your hotel about your missing luggage.
– Enjoy your time and don’t let the drama ruin your holiday coz being stressed won’t help you find your luggage. Many of you suggested us to demand compensation from the airline but we don’t even know who to blame since there were 3 partner airlines at 4 freaking countries/ airports involved, and no we’re not planning to spend our holiday at the airport finding out who to blame and asking for compensation which may not necessarily exist. We rather have fun exploring the beautiful New Zealand.

Lessons Learned??
– Sh*t happens, we should have purchased travel insurance.
– Should have just being a b*tch and demanded a LEGIT NEW LUGGAGE BARCODE.
– It would be nice to have a clear picture (in your phone) of your luggage and the brand, to make it easier for them to find it.
– Keep all your important belongings in the hand-carry suitcase such as charger, plug converter, money, medicine, jacket, etc.
– Divide your items in two luggage, we usually bring 2 luggages, 1 luggage filled with Mr. Jajan’s items, and the other one filled with mine. Now we try to divide half and half of our items in each luggage just in case one of it goes missing.

Case: The airplane left 25 luggages.
After having fun in New Zealand, we continued our holiday in Sydney. Upon arriving in Sydney from Queenstown, the staff announced that they have left 25 luggages and VOILA!! WE HIT THE JACKPOT, ONE OF IT WAS MINE!

Well it’s not as complicated as the previous episode since the luggage was not missing. The staff delivered the luggage on the next day.

What to do??
– Immediately contact ground staff, fill the form and ask about the delivery time.
– Ask for contact number and the person in charge, in case you need to contact them to follow-up.

Lessons Learned??
– Sh*t happens.
– We have divided our luggage with half mine and half Mr. Jajan’s items so we pretty much can survive with one luggage missing.

Well, I think that’s all, many things have happened, many lessons have been learned. Hopefully you can learn from our mistakes and misfortunes. Ohh and YOU’RE WELCOME TO SHARE YOUR EXPERIENCES on the comment section below as well, we would love to read that.

Okay, that’s all, next we’ll share Complete Travel Planning Tips, so stay tuned!! Last but not least, PLEASE WISH US SMOOTH DRAMA-FREE TRAVEL IN THE FUTURE๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜…

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10 thoughts on “AIRPORT & FLIGHT DRAMA DIARY (+Travel Tips & Trick)”

  1. Thank you for such a nice post!!
    Luckily so far I have never experienced those dramas but I had encountered really bad turbulence.
    I travelled from Jakarta to Surabaya in the heavy rain night and tunderbolt was quite severe.
    The first 10 minutes of the flight was so scary as hell that it almost made my heartbeat stopped and think I was going to die that day !! When the airplane started to take off, there was quite heavy rain and I thought it was okay. But when the plane started to climb, the torture begin. ๐Ÿ˜… I remembered the plane was trying to ‘fight’ the heavy rain and storm by excelarating its speed resulting very severe turbulence. The plane started to move up and down like crazy and made all the passengers scream loke crazy. They all started to pray. I travelled with my mom and she startrd to pray as well. Holy shit !! I tried to calm down but when I looked outside it was all dark electrified by severe thunderbolt, I started to think that the plane will crash. Lol. Finally after 15 minutes of torture, the plane reached ots safe altitude and the turbulence went away. After that scarymoment, whenever possible I try to avoid night flighy as it tends to be more scary. ๐Ÿ˜ฃ๐Ÿ˜ฃ๐Ÿ˜ฃ

  2. Oh dear God, that must’ve been very stresfull. My bad experience is on a connecting flight from Narita to KLIA then Jakarta. The first flight was a bit delayed so when we arrive at KL, we have to run for our life. Managed to get on the plane on time (I’m fat and running like that is a total nightmare) then the luggage is missing (maybe the luggage can’t run as fast as me) but it arrived safely the next day delivered straight to my house

  3. I went to Japan last July and I had to run for my dear life at the airport because my friends and I were on THE LAST CALL for our returning flight to Jakarta. We didn’t know the schedule of the train to take us to Narita, so most of the time was instead wasted on waiting for the train. When we got there, it was only 45 minutes before the plane took off and the check in counter was already closed, but thankfully the attendants at Narita were very nice and still let us in. Then, of course they told us to run cause every other passengers were already in the plane. And the gate was at the absolute end of the international terminal. Luckily we got there on time, even after the usual security hassle and the queue at immigration.๐Ÿ˜ถ
    Dan akhirnya gak ada waktu buat belanja di airport!๐Ÿ˜ซ
    Lesson: PLEASE learn the time schedule for the airport train if you go to Japan! They only go once per hour and the time travel takes more than an hour. It’s also better if your hotel is near to a station.

  4. In beginning of this year, me and my friend missed our flight from Singapore to Jakarta because we forgot about time difference between Singapore and Jakarta. The staff told us to buy another tickets andddddd Unfortunately that day all flight to Jakarta already sold out and we only can take the next day flight.
    In that situation we need to stay calm and looking for another tickets, because they not allowed you left the airport before we buy another tickets, because you already pass the immigration.
    After you purchase the tickets you need to take care your luggage first and then they lead you to immigration again for permission to visit Singapore for another 1 day.
    That day, we spend the night at Changi because we take the first flight and afraid to miss the flight again.

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