American Express Complaint - American Express sends me transit to Beijing, awful
American Express travel agents don't know what they are doing.
Don’t air transit through China, in fact don’t fly in China at all
Had a horrible experience trying to get from Osaka to Cairo. American Express routed me through Beijing. China has not figured out “transit.” First you can’t book your luggage straight through. You need to pick it up in Beijing. The really is not concept of transit, no box to check on the immigration form. Yes you have to go through immigration and out, not once but twice. We had a stop in Quandong first. They did not have a procedure for any of this. I finally got a Visa, was paraded around the airport and got back on the plane. In and out of immigration, customs, security. Then Beijing the same thing, push getting my luggage through customs. No transit desk still. I stumbled around and found people at Korean Air who were so helpful and told me I had to go to another terminal. That was twenty minutes on a bus not build for luggage. Arrived at the second terminal but still no transit desk. Finally found Egypt Air with a sigh of relief. Another round of immigration, health checkpoint, security, customs out.
China Eastern Airline needs its own comment. Awful. Terrible food, no mileage, homophobic and other offensive TV. No where were we told we had a stop between Osaka and Beijing till we checked in. And again the stop was on and off the plane, in and out of immigration, customs, health checkpoint, security, with no assistance on how to navigate this. I felt very sorry for the staff who tried to help, but they spoke no English that helped. The people were very polite.
I am a pretty seasoned travel and have a low bar having traveled so much in Africa but China is the worst. With the glare of the Beijing Olympics behind us we can see China is still totalitarian and does not want to change. Google got it right. Japan is a traveler dream, even if no one speaks English. China is not.
The worst of it all was that American Express is suppose to route you conveniently and efficient. A colleage on this trip traveled directly from Osaka to Cairo on Egypt Air, the same days, two hours earlier. It cost less and would not have created the horrible experience. They had seats. American Express does a bad job. They don’t really have any skill or knowledge. You might as well do it yourself. They are not travel agents, but button pushers. Yuk