So one way the US are trying to help fund their economy is by charging $14 to every person entering, I couldn't believe it when I found out. I was told at the airport that I had to fill in a ESTA form and pay the fee before I could even check in. I dumped my luggage and Beth (my best friend) and I frantically filled out the form online…this is typical me; always rushing and un-prepared. After intense drilling by the airline team I was finally allowed to check in, 40 minutes after I had arrived.
I had just enough time to grab a quick cake and coffee at trusty costa with my family, before departing to the gate. We all stood up to say goodbye. Mum and Dad, my brother Mark and his two kids as well as my teenage sisters and my best friend. Tears as streaming down my face. Despite the hard work they create, I would thoroghly miss them.
I boarded the plane, thinking of my fifteen and a half hour travel ahead of me until I arrived in luxury Costa Rica. I know Delta airlines are no BA but let’s face it, service with a smile when the drinks trolley comes down probably wouldn’t have killed the staff. It even made the service that other budget airlines such as Ryan air and Easy Jet’ look fantastic. Never again will I fly Delta. Small seats, no leg room and while the first meal was satisfactory (chicken with roast veg) the second was a burnt piece of microwave pizza; clearly it takes a genius to correctly heat one of those bad boys.
However, when I reached my stop-over in Atlanta my biggest problem was still present; I had yet to book a flight out of Costa Rica. The majority of the time you have to have an outgoing trip, may it be train, coach or flight, out of the country within three months in order to gain initial admittance. Anyways, I had heard of a bus company called Tico busses, this is company that have a bus all the way from Nicoragna, through Costa Rica and down to Panama. I tried calling the company three times and no one answered. On the fourth and fifth time a man who did not understand any English shouted at me in Spanish and slammed down the phone. Right, I thought, I must find someone who speaks both Spanish and English who can book this ticket to Panama , looking around everyone only looked English apart from one tanned couple in the corner, they looked like traditional ‘Tico’s’ (Costa Rican’s). Ten minutes past and I was still trying to pluck up the courage to ask them to make the phone call for me, I finally approached them.
“What rude people” Mr Tico said as he handed me back my phone, unable to book me a ticket. “They told me you can’t book online you have to go to a depot in Costa Rica and then hung up the phone”. Gracias Senor. I told him back (woohoo, using Spanish – the only words I knew mind). At that moment they called my flight to board. Time had run out, I would have to enter Costa Rica on a one way ticket with nothing booked coming out of the country. Customers are going to have a ball with me, I thought, here goes…. And I held my breath and stepped onto the plane.