You land at your destination tired from the flight, get through immigration quickly enough and look forward to grabbing your bags and heading home. But wait, they haven’t announced which carousel to go to to pick up your bags even though the flight landed about 20 minutes ago. Finally, the information screen tells you to go to carousel / baggage claim number 8 to pick up your bags. You go and you wait ….. and wait ….. and wait. Eventually, some bags come out but not yours. Then after a few minutes, the conveyor belt breaks down, no really, it breaks down and comes to a complete stop. Maintenance men arrive scratching there heads and after about 10 more minutes, they fix the problem and the belt starts moving again. It’s another 5 minutes before you spot your suitcase, finally.
Yes folks, welcome to London’s premier airport, Heathrow! If it had been Shanghai, I’d be at the baggage reclaim about 10 minutes after stepping off the plane, and my bags would probably already be on the conveyor belt. Within 15 minutes of landing, I’m usually in the taxi, well on my way home. But then Shanghai’s a modern, developed city and London, well, it’s London!