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Vacation Journal
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JetBoo and Other Trip Ramblings. May 25 - June 1 oops 2 , 2008 CONCLUSION

By: allnicksgone (View Profile)
Date: 6/16/2008

Friday, May 30th, went to the baseball field to see if the taco stand was still open. It wasnt. To add insult to injury, we get soaked with a torrential downpour while walking around looking for the tacos. Oh well, have to visit their new place next time I go.

On our last night, we went to Casa Os for dinner.

Upon arriving in our golf cart, we were immediately greeted by two big friendly dogs jumping into our golf cart with us. After letting us out, they jumped backed in and started chewing on the seats. Time for me to not be so nice, so I chase them away.

We each had two mojitos. They were very good here. I had the asparagus salad for an appetizer and salmon with white mustard. Very delicious. She had the lobster, which was good, but not the best. I finished it off with a cappucino. Total bill was about 800 pesos. Not bad considering that 400 of it was for the lobster.

We were the only customers in the restaurant, unless the cat visiting our table paid. When walking back to our cart, another party was arriving by taxi. I was half expecting our cart seats to be torn to shreds. Thankfully they were still intact.

Hurry back to town to cath the rest of the hockey game at the pizza shop on Hidalgo. After the game, I am getting in the cart when three tired ladies from Philadelphia ask me which way I am going. So I take them on a short trip to their hotel near the Northern tip of the island. Looked like a nice place. It seemed quiet there, but yet so close to everything. I wish I knew the name of it to possibly look into staying there myself someday. If these nice girls are reading this, please let me know.

The next day we leave. Our Best Day van is supposed to meet us at the ferry terminal at 9:35 am. So we have to be on the 9:00 ferry. But, El Sol does not open until 9:00 for me to drop off the cart. I e-mailed Best Day ealier in the week to change it to 10:05, but I never got a reply. So I went to El Sol at 8:30 to see if anybody was there. There was, and he let me return the cart. So we make the 9:00 ferry. The Best Day van is not waiting at 9:35, so I guess they did get the e-mail. Oh well, gives us time to grab a bite to eat. At 10:00 the van is there, and once again, it is just the two of us in the shuttle.

We check in at the JetBlue counter, and get through security with plenty of time to spend the last few pesos we have. Boarding starts around 12:00 for the 12:35 flight. Looks like things are running on time.

After we are in our seats a few minutes, the captain announces that one of the tires pressure is at 150 psi when it should be at a minimum of 160. He is sending the mechanic to get a different gauge. I guess he wants a second opinion. A while later he announces that the new gauge shows the same reading, 150 psi. They have to find a new tire. The plane leaves the gate so it can be used by other planes. More time goes by, and the captain announces that they found one tire, but regulations say when they change one tire, they also must change the other tire on the opposite side. So now they are looking for a second spare tire. Also holding things up is the fact the President is now at the airport, and the mechanics movements are limited. It is a very cloudy day, so the satellite tvs in every seat are not working.

Around 2:30, the captain says they have replaced one tire, but are still looking for a second. He is having busses pick us up at the airplane to take us back inside the airport so we can eat and stretch out. Inside, a JetBlue representative tells us we will each receive a $15 food voucher. We waited about 1.5 to 2 hours just for the food vouchers to arrive. During that time there was no information about our flight status. People are getting restless and quite angry at the lack of information. When handing out the $12 vouchers, not $15 like stated earlier, they say another plane is coming from Florida to pick us up. It is to arrive at 7:00 pm and we will be on our way by 7:30. The departure screen at the gate now shows 7:30.

We go off to eat, walk around, and come back to the gate around 6:00 pm. The screen now shows a departure of 8:30 pm. Again, nobody is willing to answer anybodys questions. People are angry and demanding to speak to a manager. I call JetBlue on my cellphone to see what information they can tell me. The operator says the flight coming to pick us up is not coming. It had mechanical problems. I ask if she is sure, the tv screen here shows that our flight is scheduled to depart at 8:30. She says she is sure and it is being rescheduled for the next day at 1:30 pm. She ask if I want to be booked on it. I said no, I will wait and see whats going on here.

When I get off the phone and go back to the gate area, I see the rumor has already gotten out. There is an angry mob yelling at the JetBlue people for more information. They will not say anything. The screen still shows an 8:30 departure.

Around 7:00 pm, a manager finally comes to explain. Our flight is cancelled. It is rescheduled for 1:30 pm the next day. They will put us up in a hotel, and give us more food vouchers.

Everybody is now in *line* for the hotel voucher, dinner voucher, breakfast voucher, and transportation voucher. Not sure if line is the correct term, but it something that sort of maybe resembles one. Anyways, the line is moving at about 5 minutes per person. The holdup is the custom forms. Before they can hand out the vouchers, they have to find each persons custom form we turned in at check-in for our fight. Each person was giving their name, then they have to search through the couple hundred forms which are in no order. It is a completey full flight and at this rate, it will be time to board the flight the next day before we get our hotel vouchers.

So a couple other passengers took matters in their own hands. They grabbed all the forms and was calling out the names on them one by one, with the lucky callee screaming out *over here*. The line was now a mob of anxious people packed together. It reminded me of mail call time on the show M*A*S*H. However, at this time nobody knew what was going on or what they were pasing out. Some people left after their name was called and receiving their form, not realizing they still had to wait in line for their vouchers. I cannot decribe how chaotic this was.

So we finally get all of our papers and have to go back down through immigration to get our luggage and through customs to get out of the airport. I cant believe we are going through this again along side all the other foreign arriving passengers without us ever leaving Mexico.

Outside, we have a short wait while one transportation company loads their vans 10 at a time to take us to the hotel. I dont know which hotel at this point, but I am guessing the Marriott.

We are taken to the Marriott like I suspected. Wow our these guys at this hotel organized! They have a table set up for us away from the main check in. They get each guest checked in and on their way to the rooms in just a matter of seconds. They could teach JetBlue at the Cancun airport a thing or two. They did have to put wristbands on us for our food vouchers. I looked like a daytripper on Isla Mujeres.

When we get into our room, it is 9:00 pm. We arrived at the airport at 10:30 am. It was a long day of traveling without getting very far.

I knew our flight was scheduled at 1:30 pm the next day, but that was to New York. I did not know my connecting flight to Pittsburgh, so I called JetBlue to ask.

The operator looks up my confirmation number and seems confused. She says "where are you, New York?". I tell her no, I am at the Marriott in Cancun with the rest of the flight. She says the information on the computer shows I am still on the airplane. I give her a rundown of the story I just told here. She laughs. Not in a mean way, but in a sympathetic, I cant believe it way. She was actually very nice. She couldnt understand why a flat tire would be such a major problem. Surely a spare couldnt be all that hard to get. I agree, but Im no aviation expert. She puts me on hold to find out exactly what is going on.

She informs me that the 1:30 flight will make me miss my connection. There is a flight at 12:30 and there are only two seats left. That will be enough time to make my connection. However, because the people at the Cancun airport havent taken us off of the flight earlier in the day, she has a difficult time putting me on a new flight. To the computers, it isnt possible to take a person off of one flight that they are currently physically on, and place them on a different one. It kind of makes sense to me. How am I supposed to get off the airplane, parachute? She is finally able to get everything straightened out. We are now on a flight leaving an hour earlier. That call was 44 minutes long. I cant wait to see my cell phone bill.

Around 10:00 we go down to eat. It wasnt the best food I had all week. It was a buffet and everything was bland and kind of dry. Maybe because it was so late. Other than that, this Marriott is a nice hotel. I highly recommend it if you want to stay near the airport for any reason. Nice grounds, nice pool, rooms are great, bed is a little too firm for my taste, free bottled water. Free high speed internet hookup in the rooms, which I used. It was very fast. The breakfast buffett was better than the dinner.

The last free shuttle the Marriott has is at 10:00 am. So we take that, glad to be out of there before our ex-flightmates start getting herded to the airport and we beat the rush at JetBlue check-in.

Everything else after that goes smoothly without any problems. On our flight from New York to Pittsburgh, we did see passengers that were on our original flight, so we could have made it without getting the earlier flight. But we liked having a little extra time.

JetBlue did compensate us for the delays. We each get $220 in vouchers. They base it on how much you paid for the flight. Our original flight was a free reward flight. I was hoping to receive another reward flight. I imagine the other passengers received more, most likely whatever they paid for their roundtrip flight to Cancun. I am thankful this happened on the way home instead of the way there. Would hate to lose a day on Isla. But I dont think a flat tire would cause a 25 hour delay in the United States.

We take one vacation a year. This is the third year in a row that an airline has had to put us up in an hotel. Each time was a different airline. I know it happens, but three times in a row? Am I that unlucky?

In conclusion, despite our hiccup coming back, we loved our first trip to Isla Mujeres and cant wait to go back.

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