In 2015 I spent a lot of time in airports. I shared my thoughts on those trips with you in a series of posts. I managed to get through 2016 with my feet firmly planted on the ground, but it looks like I’ll be collecting a few frequent flyer points this year. I think I was in seven airports in February, waiting for a plane. There’s not much else to do in airports except read or write, so I jotted down my thoughts as I traveled. Once we finish my airport reflections I have some travel posts about what I saw.
Small is the operative word. Coming in it took longer to walk from the gate to the baggage carousel than to clear Customs.
The sign over the carousel said 13 minutes until baggage arrived. Didn’t take that long. All they wanted to know at Swiss Customs was if I came from Munich. I think we were the only flight arriving at that time, where else would I have come from? And that was it. Welcome to Switzerland.
Heading home on an early morning flight to Ottawa by way of Toronto and Frankfurt. The airport is bustling. Lots of business people I guess heading to France, Germany or other parts of Switzerland. We checked in on the Swiss side, but went through security on the French side because the lineup looked shorter. By the time I thought of taking a picture of the terminal it was too late – through security and into this waiting area.
This truly is an international airport – Basel-Mulhouse-Freiburg is how it is designated; three cities in three different countries. I’m told when the airport was first built, in the 1930s, France donated the land and the Swiss paid for the building. Now all three countries (Freiburg is in Germany) share the upkeep. Coming in we exited on the Swiss side. On my previous visit we used the French side. I’m not sure it makes much difference – except that airport parking is cheaper in France.
It’s the start of the trip home, and I can feel the long day ahead of me. This first flight will be short, barely enough time to go up and start coming down again. The flight from Toronto to Ottawa will be like that too. I don’t remember if you can get a direct Basel to Ottawa flight, but I know there is one from Frankfurt. Going through Toronto though reduces the cost considerably. As a fiscal conservative I approve of that, even though it is going to make my day longer.