February 19, 2008
Flight from Israel on Continental - Ben Gurion Airport - Israel Trip 2008
I wrote about the Flight to Israel on Continental, so I figured I write about the flight back.
We leave about an hour or so after shabbos is over. We get to the airport on time. The security in Ben Gurion Airport is incredible. About 5 different people ask you a bunch of questions along the way. The check your bags a few times with you and then ask you more questions. They are constantly checking you to make sure things are safe. Guess what, it is all done incredibly quickly and it felt much quicker than being at a New York airport's security line.
After getting through security, we set up shop temporarily in the center circle. My wife and mother go shopping, duty free, while my dad and I go on the free and fast wifi. A guy behind me asks how I connected. He had a Mac and was unable to connect. I explained that you need to agree to the terms of service but the agreement page does not work in Apple Safari, so you need to use Firefox. Once you agree in Firefox, you can use Safari again. He sadly only had Safari on his Mac.
At that time, I look around me to see if we have any people who look like they might be sniffing my Internet traffic. Like I would really know anyway. I then finish up my emails and RSS feeds and close my laptop. The 'girls' come back and we are greeted by friends who are flying back on El Al. They said they have access to the King David Lounge and asked us if we want to go. I said sure, but we also had access to the Dan Lounge, because I flew Continental and had an AMEX card. But we decided to go with them to the King David Lounge. Let me tell you, it blew me away. It was incredibly clean but the best part was the food was kosher. I grabbed some tuna, bread, cookies, drinks and had a meal. It rocked! I wonder if the Dan was that nice, maybe next time I'll check that out.
Note, Ben Gurion Airport is pretty new. I was actually in the airport the last night before they switched over to the new airport. It was November 1, 2004, almost November 2, 2004, when I had my flight back to New York after SES Sweden 2004, where I decided to go to Sweden via Denmark, then back to Denmark to London to Israel. Then on the way home (a few days later), I was the last flight out of the old terminal in Ben Gurion Airport. So the lounges are all pretty new and awesome, so is the airport. So it is hard to compare the Continental lounges to brand new lounges anyway. Learn more about the airport at Wikipedia.
We boarded our continental flight and I noticed we were on a really new plane. The TVs and seats and everything looked shiny - looked pretty new. Unfortunately, the air conditioning did not work until we took off and there was a slight delay on take off. So it was very hot and uncomfortable until we took off. But once in the air, it was smooth sailing. The TVs had on demand shows, so you can start a TV show, movie or whatever when you want, and even pause it if you need some shut eye. That is how airplane TVs should work.
We landed and my brother Ronnie picked us up. He drove us home at about 5 or 6am in the morning. Nice brother. It was Sunday morning.
When he dropped off my parents, it was there I noticed we were missing a bag. Missing a bag!!! To be continued....