After security I went directly to the transit counter. I was the last passenger that was missing, but because of a delay I am send to the Air New Zealand lounge. And a nice lounge it is. Very stylish, food,drinks, nice seats – all you need. But for me just some drink and bread.
The gate is close to the lounge, so no need to hurry. A lot of people waiting for the flight. Only bad thing is, that Air New Zealand’s B787-9 was (because of needed check of the engines) exchanged with a A340-300 from HighFLy Malta. I heard and read only bad things about the plane, the service, the seats… But the only way to get the last leg done.
Boarding is fast an I got the booked seat which is not that bad as I heard about. A lot of legroom, comfy in a way (not as on Thai air, but OK for 3 hours). The pursers are definitely not up to standard. We get a sparkling vine that tastes cheap compared to what I had before (and what I heard about the Air New Zealand catering). They are also quiet snappy and not as polite as before.
Takeoff with 30 minutes delay. As soon as we are up in the air, they start to hand out adapters for the headphones. The Air New Zealand headphones are not noise canceling lite the Thai airway ones and don’t sit good on your head and ears. But that is unimportant, because the in flight entertainment system is the worst. 7 movies and 1 episode of two series. And the connection with the headphones do not work. Losing the sound all the time.
When we came on the plane, there was a menu for Air New Zealand’s Premium economy class. As asked, I order the lamb in hope that it will taste god. The service was a little bit chaotic. There didn’t seem to be a way how to do it, so the food put out in random order. Then the food has been reheated one by one and came out in the same random order. It was eatable but not close to what I had before. The lamb was ok, but everything was dry and not as I hoped.
Landing in Auckland after about 3 hours of flight. Old looking airport. First thing after we are out of the plane is to get the luggage. Everybody filled out the immigration form on the plane. Al the things we shouldn’t have with us. At the luggage reclaim I suddenly hear an announcement that *putmybutcherdnameinhere* please contact the service desk. I went and got the information, that my luggage did not make the flight from Sydney and will be delivered to my hostel the next morning. After some sheets of paper I get a male overnight kit to cover the basics and am send off to passport control.
I wanted a stamp in my passport. But German passports have to use the electronic gates and so I immigrate after 30 second without talking to someone. Next stop bio security. They are very afraid of diseases entering the island. As I am wearing my hiking shoes and I have used them in the mountains I checked the according box on my form. I am referred to a closer check, where they take my shoes and spray them with chemicals. My luggage will be x-rayed before delivery to me.
And out of the airport. I have to get a ride to the hostel, so I chose SuperShuttle that offers service to the door for 14 Euro. Much better than a taxi and much easier than by bus. Friendly staff and we are on the way through the biggest rush hour. I am the last to get to my hostel.
Check inn is easy. But they are 10 years back in time. No free WiFi. Bullshit. Who does that in 2018?? YMCA hostel cannot be recommended for that. Room like a normal 4 bed room. Security lockers under the bed. I share the room with a Chinese and an Austrian. And I am feeling that I get tired, very tired.
After some talking I just fall asleep. Now my body has to adjust to a total different time zone. Good night.