elb's hovel of thoughts

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Business Class - Almost

My luggage was overweight. Or rather, my hand luggage was. They charge around 150 GBP or more for every extra kilo from Lon-KL. Oh dear. I quickly said a quick prayer. The queue to check it was agonizingly slow; they took like 10 minutes to check in each family. Finally it was my turn. The usual procedures bla bla. Just as he was about to give me my ticket, I remembered something.

'Sorry, I forgot to mention, but could I have an aisle seat, please'

He fiddled around with his computer. After a couple of minutes: 'Sir, we have upgraded you to business class. You will receive your upgrade at the gate.' My heart skipped a beat - it has been a few years since I last travelled business, but I did not show any emotion, merely a nod. Its not wise to when you're wearing a suit and supposed to act professional.

Check in completed, I moved off. He noticed the hand luggage and beckoned for me to put it on the machine to be weighed, which I did.

'Its overweight, we need to check it in'. Another nod. I was not charged anything because now, as a business class passenger, I was entitled to extra weight allowance. Otherwise, I would probably have to pay up to 1000GBP extra.

Next is going past the security check. I attempted to go through the Fastrack gate, but I was humbly reminded of my economy class existance and had to join the masses. An old Pakistani lady tried to cut my line, but a loud 'excuse me' and a glare put her into place, so much so that when her husband encouraged her to cut in front of me later on [I fucking HATE people like this], she mumbled something to him with the words 'excuse me' clearly heard. Serves her right.

Please note that VAT return claims have changed since the end of last year. If you still hold a student visa valid for a long time more et cetera, you cannot claim back VAT, unless you have proof that you have ended your stay.

An attempt at accessing the Golden Club lounge did not go well either. Thus I busied myself making phone calls and the sort, only bothering to make my way to the gate when the last call was made.

The lady gave my portion of the boarding pass - with no mention of the business class I was supposed to get.

'Excuse me, but I was informed at the check-in that I would get upgraded'
'We're not upgrading anyone, sir'
'Pardon?'
'We aren't taking on extra people as we originally intended, so we are not upgrading anyone.'

Argh! I was a little annoyed at first, but that quickly changed when I realized that my prayer was answered - for my luggage to be taken care off. So I'm still happy - especially when the customs searched my main luggage for alcohol, but didn't find any (two 75cl bottles were sitting happily in duty free bags), and they were completely uninterested in the four bottles of cologne I had (worth over RM800 - the limit is RM200 worth).

5 Comments:

  • Hmmm. so far as i remember, gate upgrades don't entitle you to extra luggage allowance or club priviledges - unless you are given an upgraded ticket at check in (and even then, I didn't think this applied to extra luggage).

    Perhaps the man was just being nice about the luggage? I don't always get charged for excess weight either. 

    Posted by infinite-bowel

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Tuesday, August 09, 2005 11:17:00 am  

  • infinite: i was given the upgrade at the check in itself, but they changed their mind at the gate. They are very strict about weight limitations in London - in my case, my main luggage weighed 24 kg, with my checked in hand luggage at 8kg or so (limit 5kg for hand luggage). It is a bit too much for them to close an eye, in my opinion, with a weight restriction of 20kg. 24kg, maybe, but over 30?

    Indeed, last year, they wanted to charge me for an extra 4kg because I had chosen to carry my laptop in a cabin luggage - I had to carry it in a plastic bag instead as part of an agreement with MAS officials.

    This does not take into account my laptop, my SLR camera in its own bag, and a tiny rucksack which they allowed me to carry in without fuss. 

    Posted by pat

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Tuesday, August 09, 2005 11:52:00 am  

  • Not sure if you got an upgrade, if you were given one they would have assigned you a seat on your boarding pass. The guy is probably messing with you!

    BTW, a few years back MAS wanted to charge me £90 because I was over 6kg. Lucky for me I spotted a friend who was on the same flight buy flying to Indonesia. Checked in together. Sorted! 

    Posted by Jon

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Tuesday, August 09, 2005 2:12:00 pm  

  • hehehe....donno to say if u're lucky or unlucky after all...

    yay...patrick's back back back *dances around* 

    Posted by dJcarmen

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Wednesday, August 10, 2005 5:52:00 am  

  • jon: well, the people at the Golden Club lounge scrutinized my ticket for a few moments before informing me that upgrades weren't allowed in.

    *shrugs* either way, it doesn't really matter to me. the most important thing was that my luggage went through

    carmen: refer to above. and yes, i'm back for a while :) 

    Posted by pat

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at Wednesday, August 10, 2005 12:23:00 pm  

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