Otázka: Travelling by plane
Travelling by plane hangout
- Preparing for flight
- How to travel to the airport
- Finding the terminal, checking changes
- Flight check-in
- Common check-in
- Self check-in
- Online check-in
- Passport and security control
- Gate and boarding
- On board
- Flight safety instructions
- During the flight
- The descent
- Passport control
- Baggage claim
- Transport to the city
Travelling by plane is the fastest type of transport in the world, especially when you travel to a far distance. If you want to fly, you must book a ticket at first. You have several possibilities how to manage it. The most comfortable is e-booking, when you book your flight online on the Internet. Another way is booking in a travel agency office, where you can book any type of flights. And finally, you can book the ticket directly from the carrier.
Air tickets differ according to the way of booking. Traditional air ticket keeps the form of a card. Electronic ticket, or e-ticket, has the form of an e-mail letter. They both contain information such as your name, flight number, times of departure and arrival, names of departing and arriving airports, and boarding gates numbers. An e-ticket, moreover, contains the reservation number.
Before going to the airport you should control possible changes in departure time of your flight. You can do it by checking web sites of your carrier or airport. You should also check the validity of your documents (passport, ID card, visa, etc.) To most destinations you must have passport validation lasting minimum half a year after entering the country. And some countries (e.g. USA) also require having a visa.
In Prague we have several options of travelling to airport. The most comfortable way is taking a taxi, but it’s expensive. The same problem occurs when parking the car at the airport – it’s too expensive. Municipal city transport to airport is the cheapest, but it takes very long time to get to the airport. You can travel from metro station Dejvická, bus line № 119, from metro station Zličín, bus line № 100. At present negotiations about a high speed train to airport or a metro station at the airport are held.
After arival to the airport you must find your departure terminal. In Prague, for example, there are three terminals, but only terminals one and two usually operate international flights. Terminal two operates flights to countries within Schengen Area (area of most European countries, where people can cross the borders without a passport control. Contractual states are predominantly European Union countries, and also some non EU countries). Terminal one operates flights out of Shengen Area (e.g. to Great Britain).
At the airport first check the departures information screen to find the information about a check-in procedure for your flight. You can find there: number of your flight, time of departure, number of check-in desk, and check-in status (e.g. check-in, go to gate, boarding, last call, gate closed).
There are three possibilities of check-in at the airport. First, flight check-in for your flight is open at two or three check-in desks. Second is a common check-in, where all check-in desks from your carrier are open. There you recieve your boarding pass (or boarding card) and drop off your luggage. A disadvantage of these ways of check-in is that you often have to queue. The last possibility is a self-check at the automatic kiosk, where you can check-in yourself. There you print your boarding card and go directly to a drop-off desk where you leave your luggage. Many people nowadays prefer online check-in. You can do it in advance on the Internet and print your boarding pass at home. At the airport then you only have to drop off your luggage.
When you fly outside the Schengen Area, after check-in you have to go to a passport control, where the police officers check your passport and visas. When you fly within the Schengen Area, you can go directly to a duty free zone, where you can visit shops and restaurants. At about half an hour before departure you have to go to your gate and wait for boarding. But before that all pasengers must go through a security control, where your hand baggage is checked with X-rays, and you walk through a gate detector. You are not allowed to bring some things on board, for example weapons, ammunition and explosives, liquids and fluids of more than 100 ml, sharp or flammable things and other potentially dangerous things. You might also be asked to open your bags to be manually checked.
After boarding put your hand luggage into an overhead locker or underneath the seat before you, sit and fasten your seat belt. Very important is to turn off all your electrical appliances before take-off (mobile phone, tablet, pager, radio, remote controlled gadgets…). You also can’t smoke during the flight, including toilets. Then the cabin crew introduces the safety instructions, that is very important information, what you have to do during emergency landing or facing another problem on the board (emergency exits, using oxygen masks and life vests…). Be sure to read the safety instruction card located in the pocket of the seat in front of you.
During the flight, according to the length of the journey, you are offered meal or refreshments and you can do some shopping as well. Inflight magazine, put in in the pocket of the seat in front of you, gives you information about your flight destination, the carrier, as well as offers and products sold on the board.
At the beginning of the descent, the crew asks you to put your seat backs and tray tables in their full upright position, to fasten your seat belt and to place all carry-on luggage underneath the seat in front of you or in the overhead bins. You also have to turn off all electronic devices until the plane is safely parked at the gate.
After landing, wait for the tube opening or go to the airport bus, that takes you to the terminal for passport and visa control (if needed). Before entering the arrival hall you surely want to pick your baggage. Follow the signs marked as baggage claim, or baggage hall. It is the place with many transport belts, where you wait for your baggage. Very often not only one airplane lands, that is why there is a great mess in the hall. For better orientation you can find a screen linsting last several flights. Each flight is marked with a number of belt where the baggage is to be transported.
When you have your baggage, you can go to the arrival hall and leave the airport. Before that, nevertheless, you have to go through the customs office. There you have to choose between a green exit (nothing to declare) and a red exit (something to declare).
From the airport you can go to city by the city municipal transport or by a taxi. Of course, you can rent a car from the car rent company at the airport.