June 18, 2010
We arrived at the airport at 5 am. We paid our exit fees and got in our respective airline lines. Scott at American Airlines and me at Taca. I quickly got my boarding pass and went through security and waited for everyone but they did not make it until everyone was boarding their flight. With still time to board they were told there was a problem with immigration and could not take this flight. American Airlines obviously overbooked the flight because the boarding passes they were given were not their original seats. To make matters worse, American Airlines would not take responsibility and made them take a later flight to Miami (1:40 pm) in the day and their connecting flight to St. Maarteen the next day. And charged them $750 for their inconvenience.
I am so proud how they handled the situation. They got their new airline tickets, got an inexpensive hostel on Miami beach, and will take an inexpensive bus to the hostel from the airport. They had done an incredible job adapting to the backpacker lifestyle of traveling during the trip. However, today at the airport they earned their Backpacking Wings. I could not be more proud of each of them for confronting to the situation and solving it.
Traveling, whether 1st Class or backpacking, has its up and downs. It is knowing how to handle the situation that makes everything okay. Adapting is a part of everyday life and traveling is no different.