Sunday, November 28, 2010

2010 Beijing Trip, Vancouver Again

Wow, US Dept of Homeland Security is a PITA. Transiting in Vancouver on the way to Beijing was really easy. All I had to do was go through Canadian customs and since I was not staying, they didn't really care. On the way back, I had to go through several checkpoints to get to my connecting flight to LAX. At least I'm "in" the US now and don't have to go through the Bradley arrival nightmare.

After landing, you hand all your documents to some guy who checks that you do have a transiting flight to the US. Then you have to go through security again. We just got off the plane and have not been outside the secured area. It's as if DHS doesn't believe that security is as good as TSA or something. After security, you wait in a room until someone calls you to look at a photo of you luggage. Once that happens, you then clear US Immigrations, then hand your blue form in to one more person. That's six people... I think this is probably part of Obama's economic stimulus plan.

Since I had to check in my bag, I only have my backpack with me. I now see how much crap people try to carry-on with them. While walking to my LAX flight, some guy from China (I saw his passport) cuts me off and nearly runs me over with his 4(!) pieces of carry-on luggage (roller, computer bag, and what looks like two trash bags). He seemed to be in a big hurry, asking everyone how far to his next gate/flight. At the security line, it took him forever to get all his crap onto the conveyor and even then, he still didn't remove his wallet and belt, and proceeds to set off the metal detector. Now he just showed up at the same gate as me... if his seat is near mine and he takes up all the tiny luggage space on the Embraer plane, I'm gonna be really pissed.

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