#935481 by honey lamb
24 May 2017, 22:11
There was no way I was going to Chile and not go to the Atacama Desert and our flight was to Calama. Oh, we had toyed with other destinations such as Patagonia and Tierra del Fuego but time wasn’t really on our side (and neither was price if I am perfectly honest) so the Atacama it was. We booked with Sky airlines which seemed to be the Ryanair/Easyjet equivalent in Chile. We could have booked Lan Chile but, apart from the fact Sky was cheaper, it was another different airline to experience. As with our other flights we booked simultaneously but on this occasion did not select seats, mainly because of the additional costs. Oh, and the main advantage of Sky was that it had an English language option on its website, so no use of High School Spanish (Chris), similarities to French and Latin (me) and good old Google Translate (both of us). It was easy-peasy, straightforward booking.

Chris had done some research on the origin of the plane and had found that it was a former Easyjet plane. However there wasn't a scrap of orange in sight! :D

So, having had a restful night in the airport hotel after our return from Easter Island, we grabbed a quick breakfast and headed off on the shuttle to Santiago Airport once more. There was a long queue for Sky check-in but the airline serviced multiple destinations in Chile (and beyond) and it seemed to be moving quickly. However as we moved along, we quickly realised that the desks were all described as Bag Drop and everyone had a boarding pass in hand having checked in at the various machines. Indeed everyone who was being admitted to the queue was having to show their boarding pass. Somehow we had managed to by-pass this. Chris took himself off to do this while I minded the bags and when he returned, he sent me off to do the same. It was the same type of check-in kiosk for multiple airlines that you see especially in the USA and once I had selected the English option, it was straightforward. It threw up a seat selection for me which was a middle seat but a quick scroll down the site showed me there was nothing better on offer. Well the flight was only an hour and a half. I could live with that. Of course it meant that Chris and I were separated but we had became used to that at this stage.

The flight arrived and we boarded with the now familiar lines of Y-Z, W-X, V-U. The plane took off, it landed and I didn’t have a G&T! In other words, it was fairly bog-standard with service being BOB. Our bags came out fairly quickly and as this was the only time we had booked a car, we headed off for the desk and were the first there. That was a bonus as there was only one person manning it and after he had processed us (which seemed to take forever) he then proceeded to escort us to our car leaving the ever-growing queue to seethe as they waited for his return. We however, replete with maps and the other bits and pieces one acquires at car rental kiosks, settled in to our car and headed off to San Pedro de Atacama, our destination in the desert.

To be continued...
#935490 by TimCrawley
25 May 2017, 03:19
Really enjoying the ongoing saga of your South American trip earlier in the year (the Easter Island pics from your earlier TR were stunning) thanks for posting & look forward to next instalment (at least we already know you made it home in the end but there are bound to be some, hopefully minor, disasters along the way ?)

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