Thursday, October 13, 2005

Final Four - 3

No photos for me to upload for this leg of the journey - when I arrived in Korea I had no idea what to expect of my overnight layover - but in the end it turned out well. After the plane landed - a 10hr flight from Sydney - I went through the usual immigration/customs stuff and gave my voucher to the Korean Air service desk at the terminal. I'd predicted that it would be an airport hotel us layover passengers would be plonked in, and I was right - we got on a bus and were driven for about 3mins to the Hyatt Regency Incheon Airport. I suppose it was a bit far-fetched of me to hope we'd be bussed to central Seoul so I could have a wander around and see a bit of Korea, but seeing as it was all free I'm not complaining.

When I booked my ticket here (and it seems like 5yrs ago that I did) I got the cheapest (of course) flight I could find from Heathrow to Sydney - and Korean Air had a crazy cheap deal, so I signed up for that. Only downside was a long layover at the airport on the way back - but I've slept in airports before so I knew I could do it again. When I went into the Korean Air office in Sydney to reschedule my ticket home, they told me I'd be put up in a hotel and driven to and from the airport, free of charge. Fantastic - much better than a bench at the airport. As it turned out, it was much much better (I'm writing this at an internet terminal waiting for my flight to London). The Hyatt is a typical swish hotel - just the same as the fancy hotels I'd been enjoying in Japan for the last couple of weeks.

Problem was, Incheon airport is built on an island off the Western coast of Korea, so by the time I'd checked in and had my free dinner (very nice it was too) it was almost 9pm and I had no time to try and escape to the city. I didn't fancy walking around the airport boundary fence, or swimming for the mainland, so I just stayed in the hotel room and used as much free hotel stuff as I could. This morning, it was a free breakfast buffet and the bus back here for my flight. So not as exciting a stopover as I'd hoped for - but considering what I got for free it was extremely good service. I guess I've been flying with budget no-frills airlines for too long. Anyway, it's another whopping flight soon and then in several hours I'll be back in Europe - my third continent in three days. Just look me up in the dictionary under jet-setting...