Our journey to Chile, the first country in our RTW, began at the Tampa International Airport on February 25, 2013.
I tweeted the airport:
@bethanylooi Enjoy your RTW adventure. Bon voyage!
— Tampa Intl Airport (@FlyTPA) February 25, 2013
Our first flight was to Miami with American Airlines which is really only a 35 min flight.
@bethanylooi We hope you have a great flight, Bethany!
— American Airlines (@AmericanAir) February 25, 2013
We took off and I started reading the magazine that airlines always have in the seat pockets. This one was totally in Spanish, maybe because we were heading toward Miami where a lot of people speak Spanish.
Before I even got to the end of the magazine, we landed.
We had about a 7 our layover in Miami. This was a perfect time to get some stuff done for some of my clients. I thought it was interesting that the Miami International Airport doesn’t have free WiFi, so we went to Club America lounge where they had internet and some snacks.
While working, I noticed every single person at the lounge spoke Spanish. They were probably going home from vacationing in the US.
Finally, it was time to board at around 9 at night.
This is me leaving the Club America lounge (with the eBags backpack!)
We flew with LAN Airlines. When we got in line to board the plane, I think every passenger was going home, except for us. When we got to our seats, everywhere around me, people were speaking Spanish. It was almost like being in South America already!
While on the plane, when the flight attendant came to give us drinks and food, he first spoke to me in Spanish. And even though I’ve been learning Spanish for a while, when the flight attendant said buenas noches, I must have looked confused or something because then he asked in English "do you speak English?". This was my first time hearing Chilean Spanish!
(We’ve been in Chile for almost a week and have come to a conclusion that they speak very fast and also seem to not pronounce the ‘s’ in words. So when the flight attendant said buenas noches it sounded funny to me because it was more like buena noche and spoken super fast.)
I really didn’t get any sleep because of a kid that cried literally the entire flight but either way we landed safely. As Americans, we had to pay $160 reciprocity fee per person. The rate had changed recently because we saw on the list of fees for countries that had to pay that there was a sheet of paper covering the previous fee.
Overall, the journey of over 5000 miles has been worth it so far!