Thought for the day….”Success is more aptitude than attitude”
“Heaven on Earth is a choice that you must make, not a place that you must find.”
As part of my job, I get to travel a lot, and you tend to notice the differences between countries. At Singapore Changi (code SIN, and possibly the best airport in the world) recently the drinking fountains were closed for maintenance. Being Singapore, with its fantastically well run services, the airport managers had thought to provide bottled drinking water at the water fountains so that passengers were not inconvenienced. Travel further up to Norway, which you would expect would also be a well run country and things are the opposite. In the Scandic hotel in Bergen, the orange juice machine was out of order, but nobody had thought to provide juice in jugs next to it. Next hotel (again a Scandic hotel) and the coffee machine was out of order. Just a handwritten sign on the machine saying that it was out of order. Again, nobody had thought to provide a thermos of coffee to make up for the failure. And as part of the ‘improvements’ to standard rooms, they do not now provide tea/coffee facilities in the standard rooms. Gone also are tissues in the rooms, individual shampoo and conditioner and soaps.
And as if that was not enough, the Scandic hotels in Bergen (not cheap, as nothing in Norway is cheap) have decided that they will not put cutlery, cups or serviettes on the tables. It is the same as the airlines, customer service is disappearing. Scandic hotels may be happy to ask high prices in order to stay in their hotels. The prices rise, but the service levels fall. There comes a point when you say that enough is enough. Why pay high prices for less service?? Perhaps they should let Singaporeans run the hotels in Norway??
And to end the day, a photo of the sunset near Alesund on the 18th July 2016….wonderful end to the day..
and another photo from the archives…..happy boys in Albania
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Thought for the day….”Success is getting what you want. Happiness is wanting what you get.”
A photo that is history now….a Singapore Airlines 747-400 taking off from Zurich airport in Switzerland. Known as the Queen of the Skies, almost 400 tons lifting off for the 11 hour flight to Singapore. Zurich (code ZRH) is a great place to take aircraft photos, as the authorities there actually encourage people to take photos, and even organize special photo tours. Great that the managers there have seen the value of photographers, and make it easy to take photos, rather than trying to prevent it like so many airports do today. Not only that, but Zurich is actually a good airport to fly into or transit, run with the usual Swiss efficiency. The photo below was taken during one of the organized photo tours, although even from the normal viewing decks, it is easy to get some great photos.
and some faces from the harbour market in Helsinki, Finland……
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Thought for the day…” I used to have a handle on life, but it broke”.
” I am not a complete idiot…some parts are missing”.
Over the years, I have experienced lots of airlines, and lots of airports. I recently go to fly with the Brazilian budget airline GOL, who promote themselves as Gol Intelligent Airlines. Actually a pleasant experience, as they had clean aircraft, good customer service and sensible check in procedures. Nice to find a budget airline that is cheap but good, and also one that seems to be trying. The same cannot be said for Berlin airports.
I had the misfortune to have my first experiences of the 2 Berlin airports, Schonefeld and Tegel. It is very clear why Berlin needs the new airport, although in the news this week is seems that it will not open until 2018 at the earliest. Would you believe that at Berlin Tegel TXL airport, that they are using a tent as a departure hall for flights heading to places like Belgrade and Minsk?? Admittedly, it is the sort of tent that they use for exhibitions and functions, but a tent it is. Hard to believe that the capital city of Germany, an advanced nation, is forced to resort to using tents at its main airport. And the fiasko of the new Berlin airport, greatly overbudget, extremely late and seemingly, not near to ever opening……not very German at all. The good people down the autobahn in Munchen, Bayern, know how to run a good airport, as do the Swiss with Zurich airport.
But still at the top of the list must be Singapore Shanghi Airport SIN. Normally top in all the surveys of the world’s best airports (and for good reason t00), it is a real pleasure to use. It is one airport that I am happy to have a long stopover in. I cannot say the same about the tents in Berlin Tegel !!!
Two photos of Brazilian birds for the pictures today, and both taken with the Fuji X-E1 camera.
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Thought for the day….” If you cannot be thankful for what you achieve, then be thankful for what you escape”.
” The more that you live, the less that you die”.
There are good airports in the world, and there are bad airports. Singapore (Changi) must rate as the best airport in the world, and changing aircraft there or just waiting is actually a pleasant experience. Well managed, clean and also lots of good facilities for travellers, such as free cinemas, gardens and even a swimming pool. And plenty of comfortable seats. Compare that to the Oslo Gardermoen (OSL) airport. They have taken away most of the seats in the terminal now, so that often the only option (apart from sitting in an expensive restaurant (which may be closed at night/early morning) is to sit on the floor. Their reply to my complaint was that it was due to pressure of space, so their answer is to take seats out. But it will be reviewed again in 2017 (yes, you read correctly, 2017!!). What are travellers supposed to do if they have to wait before they are able to check in? I sometimes wonder about the people managing airports such as Oslo Gardermoen. Not only is the lack of seats bad, but if you arrive off a long flight, then try getting a shower in the airport. Oslo Gardermoen (OSL) airport has facilities more like a 3rd world country, instead of a Scandinavian capital.
Staying in El Salvador again for the photo today, and a photo from the market in the town of Naza. Again, a very expressive face. The photo also makes a good crop as well, have a look at the small photo below and see if you like it better.