My trek to Colorado Springs for Boarding Area’s BAcon conference is going to be an interesting case of planes, trains and automobiles. Wideroe, a regional airline in Norway and the largest regional airline in the Nordic countries, went on strike today. The strike is expected to continue for the next day or two. (This just happens to be a few days after SAS’s announcement that it is selling off Wideroe – coincidence??)
My flight from Kristiansand, Norway to Colorado Springs starts on Wideroe (or was supposed to), connect in Copenhagen for flights to Dulles and finally Colorado Springs. Now all that is changed.
I could try to switch to KLM/Delta and go through Amsterdam, though I’d like to stay with my current Star Alliance ticket since there should be no change fee due to the strike. Buying a roundtrip ticket from KRS to COS on SkyTeam for tomorrow is a cost I do not even want to think about. The best bet is to get to Oslo somehow (5 hours away). It is also pouring rain today to add to the fun. At least it’s not snow like on my recent Wideroe flight:
So I looked at these options:
Take a train to Oslo. Well, lots of folks did this before me so all of the 4-hour routes are sold out. I could book a 6-hour train ride and make two train changes or even book an 11-hour ride and get there in the morning. The good news is that would save a hotel night stay; the bad news is I’d have to change trains throughout the night.
Rent a car and drive to Oslo. This has issues, as well. Finding an automatic transmission is tough. Finding a rate without a drop-off fee for this one-way trip is impossible. Total cost with the drop-off fee – over $600 – and this doesn’t yet cover insurance or a GPS, both of which I’d need in Norway.
Take a taxi to Oslo. This may sound ridiculous at first, and it certainly did to me, but I reconsidered when I got a rate of $1,000 and they do the driving and I can work and sleep in the back seat and I won’t need to worry about refueling and finding the rental car facility at midnight. $600 for a rental car versus $1000 for a taxi are both so outrageous that by this time another $400 almost doesn’t shock me. The taxi is starting to look good.
Saved by the bus! When I arrived back at my current hotel to pack up to head out, they suggested the bus. I didn’t have time during the course of my client meetings today to even look at this option. A bus was scheduled to head to Oslo in 60 minutes and at a mere cost of $60. Great news, though gotta pack up fast and get out!
Regardless of how I get to Oslo, I’ll still need to take a train in the morning from the City Centre to the airport (about 40 minutes or so).
* * * * * *
I am now on the bus for a minimum five-hour ride in this very rainy evening after a short taxi ride to the bus station. I had my choice of sitting in the front of the bus next to an infant or sitting in the rear of the bus next to the bathroom and near the necking teenagers. I choose option 1. As a mom, I can tolerate the cries of a baby and I have my headphones to help. But I do not want to experience the smells of the bathroom or the shaking of the seat behind me, so up front I sit.
Anyway, this is the beginning of my trek to Colorado Springs for the Boarding Area blogger shindig. It’s starting to sound like Planes, Trains, & Automobiles. Or in my case, planes, trains, taxis, buses and who knows what else?!?!
For now I’ll just focus on getting to Colorado Springs.
Later, I’ll worry about the Wideroe flight that I’m scheduled to be on early Monday morning when I return to Norway. I’ll be praying to the airline gods that the strike is over by then.
P.S. My re-routed trek from KRS to COS is now taxi –> bus –> taxi–> train –> OSL –> EWR–> ORD –> COS–> taxi. If I’m caught napping at this conference, this may be a clue why.