Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Vietnam Holiday One

Day 1 of my holiday in Vietnam. We left a day late because my passport expired less than six months from my departure date Jetstar refused to let us board. I had to apply for an expedited passport renewal from DFAT. This caused us a great deal of anguish and worry as DFAT will only guarantee delivery with 48 hours and I needed mine fr a flight the next day. To their great credit the passport was ready the following morning. Kirrily and I were ecstatic at this news as we thought our holiday would be ruined.
We flew Jetstar to Ho Chi Minh City via Darwin. This was a very cheap flight but let me warn you it us cheap for a reason. We had been switched from an A330 to an A320. Jetstars A320s were designed and built for short hops between Brisbane Melbourne Sydney etc., NOT 4 1/2 hour over water international flights. The seats are close together, bolt upright and not reclinable meaning it is impossible to sleep. Jetstar dont provide outgoing immigration forms or even tell you you are supposed to fill them out at Darwin so there is a mad scramble there. There's nothing to eat at Darwin and you can't take any water through customs even though you bought it in the secure area in Sydney. I was patted down to ensure I didn't have liquids concealed on my person. I felt like emptying my bladder on the guy just to be sure. Basically the flight is a little short of torture and I would never do it again.
But we arrived in Ho Chi Minh City safe and on time which are the most important things, passed through immigration worried they would reject my new passport and send us back and finally made it to the Majestic Hotel in Saigon, exhausted, hot, smelly, dirty and thoroughly pissed off at the world. Off to a great start.


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