We got to Bangkok via Tokyo, on the strangest ticket we’ve ever seen. It was bought from Expedia and involved many unrelated airlines. SFO to Tokyo was on Northwest (codeshare with Continental). The second flight to Bangkok was United with another bizarre codeshare. The trip started off rough as we arrived in SFO to pick up our electronic ticket. Expedia hadn’t let us pick seats and we were informed there were no seats left, the flight was oversold and we’d have to wait until 30 minutes before departure to get our seats.
We were then told that, "There are no seats available, but if you are interested, we can offer…" Ian cut her off. "I am not interested. I bought tickets for this flight, and this is the flight I want. No other flight." "But Sir you haven’t even heard what I am going to offer you". "I don’t care! I bought tickets for THIS flight, I am going to be flying on THIS flight!" Anyways, eventually we got seats. We hate all American airlines. Overselling seats is immoral, but a somehow accepted practice in the travel industry. And it’s not even like they will credit you for missing your flight for whatever reason – they recently stopped that practice, but continue to oversell seats. Imagine showing up at a hotel that you’ve already paid for to be informed that all the rooms are gone, but that they can offer you a room tomorrow night, plus a free night another time? Anyways, we’ll get off our soapbox.
Narita Airport in Japan (A common stop-over on the way to Bangkok) gets a failing grade from us. Yeah, it’s modern and clean, but it’s about as exciting as watching paint dry, it’s small, and it’s inefficient. On both our outgoing and returning trip, we had to take incredibly slow buses out to the plane, then wait forever for the plane to be towed to the runway, etc. The international transfer waiting area has no shops at all except for a small stand selling $2 US chocolate bars. There is no construction happening that we could see, so I guess the lack of real gates for all the American airlines connecting to points in Asia isn’t going to get any better any time soon.