First experience with flight cancellation
Late on Thursday night we finally arrived in Auckland after a few flight delays, a cancellation, and being put on the next available flight. I know we are lucky not to have been among the people whose flights were delayed due to floods, or who were stuck in the airport because it was unsafe to leave. I am thankful that we are safe, but feel so terrible for the people who were in a much worse scenario and now also have their homes destroyed from the floods.
Our flight was due out of Sydney at 9:55am, but it was delayed by an hour without much of an explanation. We used one of the lounges and then received a notification about another flight delay, this time to 12:00pm. After some time we were a little concerned that we were missing announcements as we weren’t in the gate lounge, and the lounge we were in didn’t have any. We decided to leave the lounge and see what was going on. The flight was actually already at the airport, so we were wondering why we couldn’t board yet. There was an “engineering issue” that caused the flight to be delayed. As an apology for the inconvenience, the airline gave us $15 refreshment vouchers that could be redeemed at selected kiosks. Unfortunately they didn’t go very far because it was a public holiday and there was a 15% surcharge.
We finally boarded, and seemed to spend a lot of time on the tarmac before we really moved. We were soooo close to take-off before the crew announced that we could not fly because the engineering issue persisted when they turned the engine on. Just moments before the announcement that the flight was cancelled, some of us noticed via the airline’s app that we were automatically placed on another flight later that afternoon. We got moved to one at 3:30 while some people were put on a 7:00pm flight. 😰
It wasn’t necessarily stressful, but since we had gone airside, we had to come “back into” Sydney, and go through customs, then check-in again, and go through airport security again. All of this took time. But we had enough time to pop back into the lounge. Initially we thought we might not be let back in, but after we told the lady at the front desk that our flight had been cancelled and we had to check back in again, she covered her ears and said, “oh go on in, I’ll pretend I didn’t hear that”. 🙃
Nick and I were separated for the flight, having been assigned middle seats a few rows from each other. We couldn’t change our seats, but I wasn’t bothered by my seat neighbours as they were polite, and the lady sitting next to me was especially friendly. The flight was delayed by almost an hour but we just dealt with it. The flight itself was pretty smooth and the food was alright—an adequate dinner, since it was about dinner time.
I passed the time by focusing on and working on a blog post. There was free wifi which I mostly used to check emails. Once I was connected, I tried to contact Nick through iMessage and even tried to message him through the in-flight “SeatChat” feature, but got no response. 😂 Later I found out that he couldn’t connect to the internet and just passed the time by playing a game on his iPad.
Once we arrived in Auckland we bumped into the man who had been sitting next to us on our original flight that got cancelled. He had been moved to the same flight. We both exclaimed, “you made it!” He wished us a good trip.
It didn’t take too long to have some of our declared items checked—they just wanted to have a look at our hiking shoes, which were clean—and get SIM cards for our phones, then we jumped into a taxi to get to our Airbnb. I remember saying to Nick when we passed through security for the second time: I feel like I’ve just gone on a trip but I haven’t even left Sydney! Our check-in to our Airbnb in Auckland was quite easy, as the host had given us very clear instructions. I urged Nick to take a photo of my outfit in the Airbnb, as it’s something I’ve been trying to do every day (and honestly have been almost every day for the past few years, to have a record of all my outfits and log patterns and what I wear the most). 😆
We were not hugely impacted by the floods in Auckland, other than attempting to travel on foot during the very rainy Friday, and having soaked shoes and socks. It became rather inconvenient for us and was a bit of a bummer since the trip had gotten off to a “bad start”, but we remained positive and tried to make the most of our time regardless. We didn’t have anything locked in, so didn’t miss out on anything, but for most things we had to play it by ear.
Of course, we missed a whole afternoon and evening in Auckland due to the flight delays and cancellation, but we made it eventually. Another post on our short time in Auckland soon. 🥝
I’m blogging every day in January 2023. Let me know if you’ll be joining in and trying to blog every day. 😊 The hashtag you can use on social media is #blogeverydamnday.