Heathrow Airport London Long Immigration Line

Having left the quiet Frankfurt Airport, our son encountered the opposite situation at Heathrow Airport, where the immigration queue was manned by only two people. This left people waiting in line without food or water for up to seven hours. It took our son six hours in the queue. We will have a chat with him this evening and we will surely hear some more details as well.

More about this here from the BBC News Business with the headline: “Heathrow Airport seven-hour queues ‘inhumane’, say passengers”

This was the immigration queue at Heathrow Airport on 28 Feb 2021 around 9pm.

Thomas had to be at the Frankfurt Airport by 2pm, no snacks are being served on flights, and yes, one can go without food or water until midnight. That is when he got back to his flat in London.

Some of the hold-up was caused by passengers not fully prepared for entry with the new regulations. One of them being having booked the two COVID-19 tests beforehand, and showing proof of it.

His two COVID-19 tests for entering the U.K. came to a total of £ 210 after some comparison shopping. Some test centers charge as much as £250 per test. All this, among other required entry forms, was done well before his flight.

His airport taxi reservation, which is usually around £40, tacked on another £5 for each additional 15 minutes. I’m sure he will let us know what his total bill came to.

He also had to miss his TESCO food delivery as none of his flatmates were home.

He made it back to London. That’s all that matters for right now.

Notes from Bhuj Gjarat in India

My best Japanese friend, Nobuko, is at it once again – traveling around the world and sending updates. I have decided – with her permission – to put her updates on my blog to help fellow travelers navigate and learn from her experience.

21 June 2012  

I am in Bhuj, Gjarat (India) since this morning. I am doing fine. I have some interesting stories to tell you. Hope you will be entertained.

On my first day, in a queue line at a train station in Mumbai, I happen to run into a Brazilian guy and his wife I had met in 2009 when we did a meditation course in Rio!!  How crazy and a good omen is this. Small world.

By the way, a big train station is a very good place to practice what I would like to call patience with assertive flavor (if you can name it better, please let me know). They are not mutually exclusive. It can be done.

I had to change queue lines three times due to me not having a form filled out or being in a wrong line (local vs long distance, etc), each costing me about 20 – 30 minutes to get to the window. All the while, others are breaking into the lines or squeezing themselves in at the window when someone else, like myself, is being assisted. I learned quickly that I had to glue myself to the person in front of me to prevent people from getting in between – I am sure men enjoy such close encounters on their back. Or in the front, for that matter.

Anyhow, without me being shuffled around from one line to another, I would not had bumped into the Brazilian couple, so I guess everything has a reason.  I have a cell phone now because a 24-year-old, very nice young Indian man I met on a train gave me a SIM card as a present. Here, one needs a local residence proof to buy a SIM card. So without him giving me a SIM card, I would not have been able to have local cell number. Lucky me. 91 is the country code.

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