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  1. #1
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    Anonymous Coward's Avatar
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    LAX - What A Mess

    I departed Monday evening (LA Time) via EVA from LAX's Bradley International Terminal. The place is a disorganized mess. I arrived at the place via the FlyAway bus from Van Nuys. Of course, there was no bus parking near the entrance so I got off a few hundred meters away and lugged my shopping and Christmas gift-laden bags to the front door. I entered the door and saw a lady holding and EVA sign. I went up to her and told her I was on EVA and she directed me to a baggage screening line that snaked back out the front door and up the road as far as I could see.

    She estimated that the wait was about two hours; just enough time for me to miss my flight.

    So, I walked out the door and just as I rounded the corner the line parted; a Biblical miracle or sorts. I slipped right in. No one noticed. Still, even though I was only about one fourth of the way back in the line, the wait took nearly an hour. Those TSA screeners are so slow. This is exacerbated by the fact the the screening line runs right across a busy walkway causing horrible people-traffic control problems. When you get to the head of the line you turn your bags in and are told to wait at the other end of the CTX scanner for your bags to come out.

    I went to pee and came back only to see that people behind me in line were already retrieving their bags while mine still sat on the floor awaiting screening.

    So, I went up to have a beer on the floor above. By the time I got back some hapless TSA guy was frantically looking for the owner of my bags. "They're mine," I said. At this point you are not longer allowed to touch your bags so a TSA contract employee has to go with you to the check-in counter where he parks your bags in a "secure" area. Of course, the bags pile up in there and when you get to the front of the check-in line it takes some time and effort to locate your bags. And, since you can't go in and look for them you have to describe them to the TSA drone who searches based on your description. This causes massive check-in delays as both the airline agent and the passenger have to await the arrival of the bags from the "secure" area.

    (I put the "secure" in quotes because the area is wide open. Anyone with nefarious thoughts could easily slip an unscreened bag in there or tamper with one of the already-screened bags. At one point one of the TSA guys was struggling with an overloaded baggage cart and caused half a dozen bags to spill over out of the "secure" area. At times improperly supervised children will wander into the "secure" area and are subsequently retrieved by panicked parents who illegally enter the area to fetch their kids.)

    The EVA lounge is closed for renovation so the nice agent gave me a $15 meal voucher instead. This bought me exactly one cheeseburger ($12.95) at one of the airport's overpriced watering holes. (16 oz draft beer: $6.95.)

    Next comes the carry on screening. Of course, no liquids or gels allowed. Laptops have to be removed from the case and put in a separate screening box. All shoes off and in a separate box. Jackets off and in a separate box. None of this is explained far enough in advance for people to prepare so you have big tie-ups at the x-ray machines while people doff shoes, unpack laptops and discard $2.00 bottles of water that they bought moments before.

    In the end my flight was delayed about one hour because passengers who had checked in were that late getting through the hand-carry screening process.

    Remember when flying was almost fun? Not enough close now.

  2. #2
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    blackgang's Avatar
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    God Damn, I am sure glad that when I came over was before any of this shit was taking place and I had already decided that I would never return to the USA in this life time, and pobly not in the next either.

    I don't look look a raghead, I ain't a raghead, so why treat me like one, If the US wasn't so PC and could racial profile it would take a lot of the load off the screening process and even at that a lot or ragheads are not terrorists either, but most terrorists are.
    Maybe let everyone carry a gun, like issue at the boarding gate, then if some asshole acts funny and gets out of line a bunch of folks would shoot the prick, and even if some were terrorists they would be out numbered and things would work out.
    Be better than taking 4 hours for a 30 minute job.

  3. #3
    I don't know barbaro's Avatar
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    LAX sux; American airports suck.

  4. #4
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    LAX is one of the slower airports in the US to get in and out of. And I always feel like a criminal when I go through there. That's how they treat you.

    I flew on September 14th, 2001. I think that's the first day flights resumed. Talk about a cluster fuck at BWI!! (Lucky I was traveling 1st class on a FF ticket, otherwise, I would have missed my flight.) But, given the circumstances, it was understandable.

    But in some ways, over 5 years later, it hasn't gotten much better. They've hired a lot more people and come up with a lot more regulations. But lines are still long and not processed efficiently.
    Everybody needs money, that's why they call it money.

  5. #5
    I am in Jail
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    The US - the most advanced civilisation in the world, the only country where the individual's rights and liberty is valued above the collective!

    Protected for you by Orwell Ltd. security contractors.

  6. #6
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    NY is no better I have been told. And all this won't stop terrorists from boarding planes. We went through that mess in the last 70s and early 80s and it still happened. The liquid rule is simply ridiculous and show how desperate those measures have become.

    They are planning to have people go through the CTX scanner, not only the bags. Would be much faster apparently and more efficient.

    A recent reportage on TV proved that it was still easy for terrorists to slip in anything to a plane, including knives and guns. If you have to go secure, what they are doing now is not enough, they have to go all the way, that is put us in Orange suits with chains on our feet.

  7. #7
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    Or make all the nice chickys under 45 strip naked and pick up their cloths when they leave their destination airport terminal..

    That should save some time and make the trip a lot more enjoyable,, and do not let any whales fly.

  8. #8
    I am in Jail
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    Quote Originally Posted by blackgang
    Or make all the nice chickys under 45 strip naked
    Make that 25 and it becomes viable

    Quote Originally Posted by blackgang
    and do not let any whales fly
    That's when the "secure" area becomes handy

  9. #9
    Thailand Expat
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    Quote Originally Posted by Milkman
    LAX sux; American airports suck.
    ... and USA sucks .

  10. #10
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    I try to choose a mid-day flight, even though that usually means a day or 2 in BKK. Things run much smoother at that time of day, I've found. The initial bag checking system is not very good at all. I also budget in some time at the airport, bringing a book and anticipating some down time prior to take-off. You can also check wait times on the TSA website. Lastly, I call my airline the day prior and the same day of my flight to inquire regarding what time to get to the airport for my flight.
    I found Rome a city of bricks and left it a city of marble. Augustus Caesar

  11. #11
    The Pikey Hunter
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    ^ I never go anywhere. Much easier.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wallalai View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Milkman
    LAX sux; American airports suck.
    ... and USA sucks .
    What the F does that mean ??

  13. #13
    たのむよ。
    The Gentleman Scamp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anonymous Coward View Post
    Anyone with nefarious thoughts...
    nefarious : adjective (typically of an action or activity) wicked or criminal : the nefarious activities of the organized-crime syndicates. DERIVATIVES nefariously adverb nefariousness noun ORIGIN early 17th cent.: from Latin nefarius, from nefas, nefar- ‘wrong’ (from ne- ‘not’ + fas ‘divine law’ ) + -ous .

  14. #14
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    ...could easily slip an unscreened bag in there
    slip:
    v.intr.

    1.
    1. To move smoothly, easily, and quietly: slipped into bed.
    2. To move stealthily; steal.
    2. To pass gradually, easily, or imperceptibly: “It is necessary to write, if the days are not to slip emptily by” (Vita Sackville-West).
    3.
    1. To slide involuntarily and lose one's balance or foothold. See synonyms at slide.
    2. To slide out of place; shift position: The gear slipped.
    4. To escape, as from a grasp, fastening, or restraint: slipped away from his pursuers.
    5. To decline from a former or standard level; fall off.
    6. To fall behind a scheduled production rate.
    7. To fall into fault or error. Often used with up.

    v.tr.

    1. To cause to move in a smooth, easy, or sliding motion: slipped the bolt into place.
    2. To place or insert smoothly and quietly.
    3. To put on or remove (clothing) easily or quickly: slip on a sweater; slipped off her shoes.
    4. To get loose or free from; elude.
    5. To give birth to prematurely. Used of animals.
    6. To unleash or free (a dog or hawk) to pursue game.
    7. To release, loose, or unfasten: slip a knot.
    8. To dislocate (a bone).
    9. To pass (a knitting stitch) from one needle to another without knitting it.

  15. #15
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    Does this mean my thread is going to be moved to the "Games" area?

  16. #16
    Thailand Expat
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    When travelling with friends I book as disabled, EVA know me quite well, have my wheelchair waiting and we whizz through at both ends, including immigration.

    When I'm flying alone I tell them at checkin that am feeling better today and trying not to inconvenience anyone, which has earned me two free upgrades, never a plobrem with extra baggage, and the greenie of access to their lounge before it was due.

  17. #17
    KID
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    L.A. is just a mess

    I started back driving a 18 wheeler and go there about 1 time a month.( leaving for L.A. and san fran tommarow morning ) I can't even find a place to park my truckfor the night.

    The only good thing about the city is the variety of food to be had !!!

  18. #18
    Member The_Dude's Avatar
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    Ahhh yes, but they do have Thai Town. It's a fix until one can get back to civilization.

  19. #19
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    Thai town does O.K. There are some cool places local Thais gather to kick back. Also, there are 2 very cool Thai Wats you can visit to get a taste of LOS in L.A.

  20. #20
    Member The_Dude's Avatar
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    Yes the Wats are very nice, they have great food on the weekends. It's worth a visit if you are in the 77th province!

  21. #21
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    LAX and Bradly airport- Misery loves company. I agree. They are the worst. I have to pass through several times a year. They are absolutely the worst. The personnel who work there are rude and indifferent. The pedestrian traffic flow was designed by Alfred E. Newman, "Who, me worry?" I dread it. I'll have to do it again in March.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Milkman View Post
    LAX sux; American airports suck.
    That's an understatement!!!

  23. #23
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    Much the same everwhere in the world I am afraid.

    Took me almost 4 hours to clear Heathrow check-in last time and yes the plane was delayed because of the fact all the passengers were delayed.

    Just goes to show that 9/11 is still with us and will be forever.

    The terrorists cry poor claiming they are the victims but really the ongoing result of that attack on US soil is still costing everyone in the west time and money every day.

    I guess they will work out better systems one day but for now I am happy that they try their best to keep the bombs and terrorists off the planes.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Loy Toy
    Took me almost 4 hours to clear Heathrow check-in last time and yes the plane was delayed because of the fact all the passengers were delayed.
    And people moan about Suwannapoom, when it takes me an hour to get from disembarking to putting the kettle on at home!

  25. #25
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    When I was travelling one of my regular runs was Heathrow - LAX - and then either El Salvador or Lima - booked right through on American Airlines - business class.
    Each time here was a 2 hour stopover in transit.
    I used to actually look forward to it !!
    Service and food on the flight was great - whisked straight off to the Exec lounge (Admirals Cabin??) as soon as my feet touched the ground - aquired a taste for Early Times ( with unlimited bar snacks free) and in vast quantities-called for flight 5 mins before the gate shut.

    This was in the mid 80's.

    Met the chap, a couple of years ago, who took over my job and is still doing the same run every 6 weeks and from what he told me it would appear that the sentiments expressed in this thread are 100% on the mark !

    Sad

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