Checking In

I flew by Indigo yesterday (29Dec2013) as I messed up by booking by Coromondal Express (I booked my tickets for 28Jan14 instead of 28Dec13). I was told by Indigo ticketing agent about the baggage allowance of 15Kg for checked baggage and 7 Kg for hand baggage.

I offloaded all the essential stuff I needed carrying from Kolkata (Like my Paper Cutter, Drafter, etc.) to meet the 15 Kg mark. All that remained in the suitcase were my clothes and my Apple MacBook Pro. We weighed the suitcase at home and found that it weighed about 16 Kg. I told my father that if needed I would pay the excess baggage.

On arriving at Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Airport at Kolkata, I went to the check in counter after completing the scanning of the baggage. At the counter, I was assigned to Ms. Sreyoshi Chowdhury. When I kept my baggage on the weigh bridge, the measure was 17.7 Kg. Ms. Chowdhury told me that I would need paying for 2.7 Kg excess baggage. I agreed. Then, Ms. Chowdhury requested for weighing my hand baggage. The net weight of the 2 baggage was 24.4 Kg. Ms. Chowdhury told me that she could adjust between the 2 allowance limits. I again agreed.

However, I chose to tell Ms. Chowdhury that the suitcase from Samsonite that I was carrying weighed about 8 Kg. So, was it correct on the part of the Airlines to expect me to Travel 2000+ KM with about 7 Kg belongings. I did not tell her that I refused to carry 2 Kg of Fish from Kolkata that my mother wanted to fry and send with me as Deepshree’s Birthday is on 30Dec. Ms. Chowdhury nodded and then handed me the boarding pass and did not discuss the excess baggage.

I went for the Security Check. When my back pack was scanned, the Security Officer told me that there was a lighter in the back pack. I told him that it was possible. However, it was there by mistake as I had changed my plans to fly at the last moment and thus did not get enough time to re-pack everything. The Security Officer scanned my back pack and took out the Lighter. It was an expensive Apple Lighter. Besides, he also took out the steel chain which I had bought from Chennai just a few days back while travelling by Madras Mail. He also found the Swiss Army Knife in my key chain and a Screw Driver. These are all part of my tool kit I am carrying now a days.

The Security Officer told me that these could not be carried. I told him that most of these were expensive and essential for me. So, he suggested that I put it in the Checked In baggage. I went back to the Indigo Check In Counter and met Ms. Chowdhury. She said that I need checking in my back pack. I told her that there were many expensive items in my back pack. She suggested that I take them out and carry them with me.

I took out my Mont Blanc Pens, Mont Blanc Cartridges, Purse, Passport, and some expensive stuff my mother gave me. Besides there were many more items which I consider expensive as the amount I paid for them was substantial for me. Besides all that I buy are very dear to me. Seeing me struggle, Ms. Chowdhury got up from her seat and went somewhere. Soon, she returned with a cardboard box. She told me to put the Lighter, Screw Driver, Steel Chain and the Swiss Knife in the box. I did so. Then she told me to get the card board box scanned. I put all the stuff back in the back pack and went to the X-Ray machine.

When they passed this card board box through the X-Ray, the officer pointed to the lighter. Another officer told me that Lighters were not allowed in checked in baggage. I knew this from previous experience. However, I asked him this was so in India while I could carry lighter in my pocket while flying from the Gulf. The Officer told me that in India we were concerned about the individual safety. I was amused. However, I agreed; though my heart was bleeding to let go the Apple Lighter.

I went back to the Indigo Check In Counter and stood in the queue. Ms. Chowdhury completed checking in the passenger and came to me with a fresh boarding pass. There were other passengers ahead of me in the queue. She gave me the boarding pass and wish me a safe flight.

Victorinox Swiss Army knife, photo taken in Sw...
Victorinox Swiss Army knife, photo taken in Sweden. This is a Mountaineer model. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
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