Yesterday the 19th was the start of a day filled with constant traveling! Our first flight left the Kansas City airport around 8:15am, which meant an early morning for everyone because we needed to be at the terminal two hours before the flight to check in and get our tickets. The short two-hour flight to Atlanta was the easy part…waiting over four hours for the eight and a half hour flight was not easy. To keep us entertained and active we explored the various terminals at the Atlanta airport and then played card games. I have to say a good piece of advice for a long flight is to bring a variety of things that can hold your interest whether it is a deck of cards, a book, or an IPod.
The overnight flight to Frankfurt was a very pleasant one thanks to Delta airlines. Other than a few fuzzy passengers, all very young children, Delta made this flight easier with the extra leg room and the many different types of in-flight entertainment they provided. I would definitely recommend flying Delta if you have a choice for an airline when flying overseas! For even more legroom, try and store your carryon in the overhead bins, this will let you stretch your legs out underneath the seat! Also bring a set of earplugs… I wish I had grabbed mine from my bag before it was shoved in the overhead bin they would have really helped with the noise.
Upon arrival in Frankfurt, we had a relatively easy route through customs. If you are not fluent in German, don’t worry!! They have plenty of signs with the English translations and the airport staff was very helpful if you have questions. My advice if you are traveling through the Frankfurt airport is to plan ahead of time how you will get from one terminal to the other if you are connecting flights there, as the airport is massive and was a bit confusing at first.
We then rented several vans to begin our drive through Germany! Another travel tip, book your car ahead and let your credit card know what you are going to be doing as we had to wait over an hour because the KSU card was being stubborn. But we were then on the road to our first stop Bingen. Our hotel is lovely, though be sure to check on check out times so your rooms will be available when you arrive and you won’t have to wait to check in.
While waiting for rooms, we explored the town and found a great local place to eat. Even though there was a slight language barrier, we didn’t let this intimidate us or sway our decision of were to eat. The food was delicious and the atmosphere was very inviting; it offered us a great introduction into local culture. We later went for a boat ride on the Rhine River and learned a great deal about local history of several near by castles and the wine vineyards that dot the hillsides surrounding the town. The boat ride offered descriptions in English, German and French so there was no need to worry about missing out on important information.
Later in the evening CSM Global hosted a ‘Welcome To Germany’ dinner at another local restaurant. There was dancing, a live band, and more amazing traditional food. We ended the evening with the knowledge that tomorrow will be yet another early day but we will begin more exploration of Germany and are off to a new city!! So here’s to a new day…and some much needed sleep!