Sooo… Yesterday was quite day…
I got to the Sydney Airport and had about an hour to kill before my flight. I decided to get some snacks for the trip and also buy a little bottle of Johnnie Walker. I get to the cashier and she smiles at me, looks at my Johnnie Walker then back at me and asks to see my boarding pass and passport. I figured that was a normal request so I complied. She kept looking at me ,however, and my passport like she was trying to decode something which I thought was strange. She told me to wait one moment and had another cashier come over and look at my passport and boarding pass. At this point I was very confused as to why they wouldn’t process my airport treats. The first cashier then explained they had to ask their manager to come out and verify my ID because I apparently looked like I was too young to be buying liquor. The manager came out and ask if I had my American license or any other form of ID (like my passport and boarding pass wasn’t legit enough). I showed them and they apologized, making the whole thing light hearted and saying I just looked so young.
I’ll take that as a compliment Sydney. So thank you.
My flight was less than 2 hours long, a very short and smooth plane ride. Once I got off the plane I started to make my way through passport control. I didn’t have anything to declare or anything so I figured my process getting out would be easy…or so I thought.
Right before You left the baggage area and head to arrivals, you have to put all your luggage through a detector. I did, then realized I only had two out of three of my bags. I looked up and saw security ask me if a black small bag was mine, which it was…
They opened the bag and tore everything out of it, asking me if I had declared anything. I said all I had was coffee and cashews. Nothing else food related that would matter. Then at that very moment I remembered that I had honey from Bali in that piece of luggage just as they pulled it out of my bag.
Apparently that is a BIG no no… So I was immediately taken to their holding room where I was asked a list of questions. After 30 minutes of being questioned, I was told I was going to be fined $XXX amount of money. And if I refused to pay I would not be able to enter into the country of New Zealand.
Of course I paid.
The sad part was…they threw away the honey.
That whole situation took up my afternoon, so I got to my hosts home in the evening. I went for a jog and then crashed. Going to bed by 8pm.
I plan on exploring the city of Christchurch. Visiting a few museums and maybe finding some live music.
Update you soon! Cheers!