We got home 12 days ago from our trip over to Canada and we we survived the United flights...just! I was worried about being airsick and it turns out I was right to be worried. I was very very ill on the planes. The first leg of our trip was a Qantas flight from Perth to Sydney and I vomitted about 40 times. I ended up sitting in the toilet for most of the flight (with permission from the cabin crew). I felt a lot better after our 3 hour layover in Sydney and then we were onto the longest leg of our journey. 14 hours on a United flight from Sydney to San Francisco. We now agree with most everyone else....DO NOT FLY UNITED. We have learnt our lesson and we will never do so again for love nor money. I was very obviously ill on the flight and at no time was I asked by a member of the cabin crew if I was ok or needed anything. I wasn't offered anything to eat or drink on the plane either. When I did ask for help 7 hours into the flight I was told to go and find someone else as the crew member was about to go on his break. I am trying to word a letter of complaint to United but I am trying to be polite in my wording and am finding it difficult. Any suggestions?
We are going back to Canada (and taking 4 kids) for christmas 2010 and we are flying Qantas all the way. We have also learned to go a different way with our carry on bags as we both had satchels that went across our body and they were a pain in the bum. We will be taking backpacks next trip and I will be taking a backpack style handbag too after the pain of a satchel style this time. I will wear the handbag on the front of my body while I am carrying the backpack on my back. We also learnt not to bother taking stuff to do on the plane (for ourselves) as our carry on luggage wasn't touched while it was on the plane. So we lunked around books and PSP's for no reason.
When we go next year the boys will have things to do in their backpacks as two 16 year olds, a 12 year old and a 9 year old have to have something to occupy them in such a confined space for such a long period of time. I will also be taking something to help the kids sleep while on the plane but I will only give it to them if they can't sleep. I fully expect the two 16 years olds to try and stay away but I know the two younger ones will need to sleep and will have trouble.
So I have about 14 months to get passports for my kids and some suitcases for all of us as we borrowed suitcases for the last trip. We also have to figure out how to get the two suitcases I borrowed from my family in Canada back to them while still having our own luggage. I am wondering if I can put their cases inside ours. The two cases we borrowed from them fit into each other so maybe I will put them into each other and take them as a second case. We are allowed two 23kg suitcases each on the flights.
I thought I should add we had an absolutely awesome time in BC and we are now thinking of immigrating there. We are hoping to be looking at some houses when we go back next year. We found the Canadian people to be wonderful and they were so friendly which made things so much better.
The American weren't quite so friendly but on the most part they were pretty good. Be aware though if you have to travel through Spokane International Airport, there is an evil woman there who works for United and she is just a cow. She was trying to tell me I wouldn't be able to fly back into Australia as I didn't have a visa (I am a NZ citizen but a permanent australian resident)....Duh! I have lived in Australia for 37 years, am married to an Australian citizen, have 4 Aussie kids, have a mortgage, driver's licence, Medicare card etc etc. She kept saying because I don't have a residency card I wouldn't be allowed into Australia. She wouldn't listen to me when I explained that we aren't like America in that we don't have to have a green card to live in Australia. She ended up saying she couldn't be bothered arguing with me and she would let Sydney sort it out. Suffice to say it took me less than 30 seconds to get my Australian Visa at the airport in Sydney....insert E passport, answer 3 questions on the touchscreen and look at the camera thank you...you have been granted an Australian Visa. Some people...sheesh.
[ Edit: Edited on 29-Sep-2009, at 18:24 by Daviesgang ]