Imagine; your bags packed, caffeine in your system, you arrive at the airport, bright-eyed and chipper, excited to begin a new adventure. Then you hear a most unfamiliar phrase, “You are at the wrong airport.”
You probably cant. For most of us, this will never happen. Rarely are we in a city that has more than one (major) airport, unless you are the living in a beast that is the Big Apple, for example.
But many large metropolitan monstrosities do, and if you are not careful; somehow one small detail is missed, and, there you are, miles or even hours away from the correct airport.
This happened to us when we began our first leg of this traveling journey. We had flown into Louisville, Kentucky, and then drove to Richmond, KY, to stay for the week. We assumed we were flying out of Louisville as well, and drove there the night before to stay at the casino nearby and gamble. Unfortunately, we were so wrong. Our flight was actually out of Lexington, a city, much closer to Richmond than the one we drove to.
Thank goodness for layovers, rental cars and time differences. We were able to rent a car and start driving north to Chicago, our next layover. Because of the time difference we were able to get an extra hour which put us at the airport with just enough time to enjoy a celebratory drink! We were actually going to make our international flight to Dubai and onwards to Thailand.
This was a fun way (although I wouldn’t recommend it) to spice up our travels, but it wouldn’t be the last.
The next time we did this was just a few weeks later, when we decided to go to Bangkok over Memorial Day weekend. I had read that Bangkok had two airports, but as we were leaving the city I forgot to differentiate which airport we were going to our taxi driver. Somehow, he didn’t think to ask, although we did have a huge language barrier. He even called an English-speaking friend to conclude that we wanted to use the expressways over the regular roads. *The expressways are much faster but are tolled.
By luck of the draw, I forgot a watch I bought off a vendor on Khao San Road inside the taxi. It was a Rolex knockoff, but a pretty good one, good enough for our driver to think it must have been real. (Or he was very honest, or the flying Gods were watching our backs) He followed us inside the airport to return it, at the exact same time that we found out we had arrived at the wrong airport, AGAIN!
What a blessing. He understood the severity of the situation and used his speedy good driving skills to get us across town to the other airport. We were able to make our flight and I tipped him heavily.
What an adventure and lesson all in one. Always make sure you are heading to the right airport!