Last week, I was in Kuwait for a quick trip, and this trip was filled with a lot of confusion. First it was the hotel which claimed to have given me a suite but turning out it was a room and so on, but the best was saved for the end.
I’ve been to Kuwait enough number of times to know how the airport functions there. You are supposed to go through a security check at every step with your belongings (check-in, passport control and boarding gates). At the boarding gates, usually my flights usually are from an aerobridge, so there is a big holding area. Since most of the travellers in this region are not frequent flyers, they usually have to be told what to do and they’d do it in a herd together. So, the airline announces boarding, and everyone wants to get in together.
This time however, it was different. The airport also has bus gates, which are smaller, made apparently on the assumption that people will go through and sit in the coaches directly. After killing a couple of hours in the lounge, me and a travelling colleague arrived at the airport, fully aware that the incoming plane had been delayed by 25 minutes. We were flying Jet Airways back to Mumbai, and they just hate to reschedule the flight to depict the correct time of departure.
We were met with a mile long queue at the gate, which is the usual because everyone wants to go through the gates quickly. But the problem was that the gate was not occupied by Jet Airways, but Oman Air whose flight was 20 minutes later than Jet Airways (scheduled time), and had started boarding.
Jet Airways ground personnel arrived later, because only they knew their flight was going to be late due to late arrival of incoming aircraft, and they wanted to take over the gate. The glass capsule of a holding area was already full like a sardine can, and there was no space to get in more people.
At this instance, while there should have been calm, there was disquiet. The security personnel who was supposed to scan the baggage threw in the towel and walked away from the gate because he refused to get in more passengers till these ones were cleared. The Oman Air and Jet Airways personnel followed him as well and there was a big discussion for 10 minutes in another part of the airport, delaying both the flights further. Eventually, the security person came back, and only Jet Airways passengers were supposed to go into the glass enclosure. However, all the rules were disregarded and everyone was just asked to pass through the metal detector and this place was now choc-a-bloc full.
You can imagine how the situation would be when some crew members (pilots) using the same gate to reach their flight had to hop on top of seats to make it to the front. And while this confusion played out, a Syrian Air flight passengers lined up at the same gate to barge in as well. Oh No!
Anyone gone through multiple flights boarding at the same gate? Do share your experiences.