Arriving in Jamaica

 
This is my third time here, and it went as smoothly as always. Arrival in the airport is much like many other international airports. About 30 minutes before landing, we each received a Customs Declaration form to fill out. Having a pen on the airplane saves you from having to ask around.

The process afterwards was rather straight forward. Deboarding, getting your passport checked, picking up luggage from the carousel, then going through customs all took about 10 minutes combined. I was lucky having arrived when the airport was empty (7:30PM on a Tuesday evening), and I’ve heard that the process took about three hours for Stacy McConkey who arrived only a few days earlier.

I lounged around in the Couple Resort Airport Lounge which was on my left as I walked out of the Customs area. I happened to be the only one there. I told the cheerful man at the desk that I was going to Tower Isle resort, he tagged my luggage, and offered me a Red Stripe. I waited for about 20 minutes and then my bus was off. It was an hour’s ride to the resort.

Checking-in is much like checking into any other hotel, except you are greeted by a “welcoming committee” with cold drinks and a cold wet towel. I took my key to Villa 9 and was escorted to my room. I met up with Stacy McConkey and Diane Pollard in our villa. I knew the mission was off to a good start when I saw our accommodations – two-bedrooms, each with its own bathroom, and a large living room and an attached kitchen and dining area. Three 32-inch flat screen TVs, a fridge, and free wireless internet access made our home away from home much more comfortable than I expected. I’m told a microwave will be made available, but I’m not sure if one is necessary since food is offered at the resort pretty much 24-hours a day.

We are even given an option for having breakfast delivered to our room. This will be a welcome option when we are scheduled to leave the resort earlier in the morning than the 7:30AM buffet opening. And this is a rather strict time. Most everything in Jamaica runs on “Jamiaca time” where things are often, and unapologetically, delayed 30 minutes or more. But when it comes to breakfast, 7:30AM is strict and not a minute before. It’s fun seeing the breakfast servers grumble at guests who try to hit the buffet a few minutes earlier.

Sleeping after the long day of travel will be easy. Tomorrow we leave to Port Maria at 8AM.

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