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Firstly, thanks for visiting my blog! Secondly, I should explain the logic behind the posts. Some posts I'm doing 'on the fly' while others are posts relating to past experiences. I'll try to title them accordingly or you can search using tags.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Bruce's Airport Nightmares

Airports (mostly) SUCK!

I passed through security, bought 2 small bottles of water for Jack's formula at $6.00 US at the store and had them taken away 2 minutes minutes later, only 10 meters from boarding the airplane. You never know what to expect in airports.

On a recent trip to and around Argentina my family and I passed through a number of airports:
  1. Ottawa, Canada
  2. Newark, New Jersey, USA
  3. Orlando, Florida (free WiFi)
  4. Sao Paulo, Brazil ($$$ WiFi)
  5. Montevideo, Uruguay (free WiFi)
  6. Jorges Newberry, Buenos Aires, Argentina
  7. El Calefate, Argentina ($$ WiFi)
  8. Salta, Argentina
  9. Iguazu, Argentina
  10. Miami, Florida, USA
  11. Washington D.C., USA
From the most disgusting airport of Sao Paulo, Brazil to the most amazing Carrasco Airport of Montevideo it certainly helps to be prepared when traveling with a child. I've learned that airports & airlines hardly ever have similar protocols and that you should NEVER assume things will be the same. For example, some airports will make you go through security even if you're taking a connecting flight within the same terminal and others won't. Some airports will make you dump all of your water (used for making baby juice) even if the bottle hasn't been opened and other airports won't. Some airlines will make you pick your baby stroller up at the baggage claim (huge pain in the ass) and others will have it opened up and ready to go when you get off the plane. My point is that you should expect the worst and prepare to practice patience when traveling through multiple airports. There are also a WHOLE BUNCH of 'grown up' issues (departure fees, lack of clocks, etc) as well but I won't get into the details.

What I would really like to talk about is the stark contrast between the Sao Paulo airport in Brazil and the Carrasco airport in Montevideo. Sao Paulo is hot, smelly, poorly organized, has disgusting bathrooms, is ugly, has overpriced disgusting restaurants, annoying security placements, long walks between terminals and mediocre duty free stores. On the other hand, Carrasco has beautiful architecture with beautiful views, floors so clean that you can see your reflection, modern restaurants at respectable prices and an amazing duty free shop, calming music and most importantly it has happy people everywhere.

Carrasco also had a nice light show in the mezzanine, an upscale McDonalds restaurant (only coffees, deserts and homemade sandwiches) and FREE Wifi (I think Sao Paulo charges 10 USD / hour). Check out the pictures of Carrasco below. There are no other airports worth mentioning... they are all somewhere in between the two mentioned above.

(more pictures if you follow link)