Homeward Bound…

After the debacle with Carnival’s “Luggage Express” (which is actually a rather accurate name, since your luggage can get home in a jiffy, but your husband on the other hand cannot), we opted to use self-debarkation. We easily navigated off the ship, through customs, and to the buses for transfer to Miami airport. (Tip: Using Carnival’s Luggage Express is a waste of money and is more trouble than it’s worth. You won’t save any more time, and more than likely, you will end up stressed out and with headache since they apparently still have a lot of kinks in the system…more on that in a minute.)

We arrived at the Miami airport (luggage in tow) within 40 minutes of walking off the ship. We checked in with the lower level airline staff and then proceeded to security. Mind you, Miami ranks high on the list of user un-friendly airports…signage to our gate directed us to the end of an empty hallway. When we finally realized we needed to go upstairs signage directed us to a closed security checkpoint. The information desk was closed. Watching others proceed to the right we followed suit and found another checkpoint, conveniently situated right at the top of our gate (who knew?). We made it through security and to the gate without incident.

It’s worth mentioning here that Delta Airlines had nothing to do with screwing up our flight home. It was Carnival’s system that was screwed up and which caused us all the stress and and anxiety the night before. Again, Carnival’s “Luggage Express” isn’t worth the headache, don’t bother.

Unfortunately for us, our flight was delayed 30 minutes, making the likelihood of missing an already ridiculously tight connection all the more real. Deciding to be proactive, I approached the gate agent to see about possible re-routing…special thanks goes to David Easton of Comair, who directed me to a Delta agent a few gates down…he was able to confirm seats on a later connection should we miss the original flight. Alas, we were guaranteed to get home on Sunday.

We ended up arriving in Cincinnati at 2:56pm. Our connection was leaving at 3:05pm. Mike and I readied ourselves to haul ass off the aircraft, and the other passengers did the same (seems almost all of us were about to miss our connection). Seeing as that we were seated mid-plane, it seemed unlikely we were making our connection. We made peace with ourselves and excepted the inevitable (a midnight arrival home and to work at 7am) …but then the heavens parted and music began to play…

”Would Michael Johnson and Jody Levison-Johnson please proceed to the front of the aircraft to see the customer service agent? She is prepared to escort you to your flight…”

And sure enough, a wonderful woman, boarding passes in hand, met us on the tarmac, ensuring that we made it to our connecting plane to reach home (Mike actually hugged her before we boarded).

Thanks to Delta Airlines and Comair who made getting us home their priority as well as ours. And, well, as for Carnival, you suck…thanks for nothing.

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