Florida Guide > Travelling
We are on our way to Fort Lauderdale Hollywood International Airport via Charlotte, flying with US Airways from London, Gatwick. The first leg of our journey is over and we have landed in Charlotte. Having been through Immigration and Customs, we must recheck our luggage onto the next flight as our aeroplane is waiting.
Friday, September 3rd, 2010 Charlotte Douglas Airport 13. 55 Local
The carousel is still empty when we arrive – it’s only been 10 minutes since leaving the ‘plane, which is really quick. But we stand and watch and wait for our suitcases. Suitcase after suitcase passes us by, being heaved off the carousel by thankful passengers, but no sign of ours. What on earth will I do if all my clothes have gone missing? We are going on a cruise, and that would be a disaster. Practically everyone has now gone and we are feeling quite anxious – but we remember that we checked in really early, so our luggage is likely to be at the bottom of the pile – and sure enough, just as we are giving up hope, we see the colourful straps on our suitcases as they swirl along the conveyor belt. Oh what a relief it is!
Paul heaves the heavy suitcases off the carousel and onto a trolley, and we are off to Customs, where they take our completed white form from us and beckon us through. We must now send our suitcases on their way to the next flight, to Fort Lauderdale, and as we leave Customs we can see a busy area where suitcases are loaded onto a conveyor belt. Once again we heave our suitcases off the trolley and two very helpful ladies pitch them onto the conveyor and they disappear from view. Phew! Now we must wait to see if they reach our destination, so it’s not over yet!
We continue along the corridor and find ourselves in a huge area with a domed ceiling. Along one side there are lots of take-away restaurants and on the window side white wooden rocking chairs set amongst delicate trees, where people are relaxing. Unlike Gatwick or Heathrow, the various concourses all meet in a huge central area which is the other side of security. This means that all the concourses are accessible, as Security is beyond this area. We therefore don’t have to go through Security again, which will save time.
The area is buzzing with people and their luggage. Some sit and relax in the rocking chairs, some are eating or drinking, others, like us are looking a little bemused. We have a little time before our next flight so we must find our gate and hopefully get a bite to eat.
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Page added on: 9 March 2011
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