Sunday, October 11, 2009

Final Adventure Before Furlough

Departing Uganda on the morning of September 16 allowed one last opportunity for an adventure.  As we were checking in at the airport, all ready for our 3-month furlough to begin, we were informed that the computer showed only 4 tickets for our family of 5.  Yikes!  We assured Megan (the one whose ticket was missing) that we weren’t going without her, but we did tease her a bit.  Several airline agents searched and searched for an explanation.  Finally they explained that we would have to go upstairs to purchase a new ticket for Megan and we would have to do so quickly, because check-in time was almost closed by this point.  Having checked in the rest of us, including our luggage, Amy waited with the kids near the immigration lines.  I went upstairs to talk to the British Airways agents there, looking for a quick resolution to the problem.

We had a reservation showing all five names and the itinerary.  We had paid the travel agency in America for five tickets.  However, it appeared that the travel agent inadvertently failed to ticket one of the reservations.  It was a simple oversight; but now we needed a quick remedy!  At the recommendation of the airline agents, I bought a one-way ticket for Megan.  We determined that we would have to resolve the situation with the travel agent after arriving in the states.  They processed the ticket as quickly as they could.  When I asked for printouts of all the booking reservations (wanting to have as much written proof as possible to show to the travel agent), they told me, “Your flight is leaving soon.  Go check in quickly and we will bring the printouts to you!”  I called Amy so she could send Megan to meet me at the check-in counter with our passports and my boarding passes.  Dashing downstairs and heading to the nearest agent, Megan met me with the documents and Amy took the other two toward the flight.  Megan & I quickly got her boarding passes and rushed to immigration.

As it turned out, we caught up with Amy and the other kids in the immigration lines and the boarding process was going slowly.  So we were fine on time.  Having been in the states for 3 weeks now, we have been able to resolve things with the travel agent.  They were very apologetic for the mistake.  They are reimbursing us for the $1,350 ticket we had to purchase in Uganda and they are making another reservation (at their expense) for Megan to return with the rest of us on December 16.  We are grateful that it has all worked out fine.

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