Wednesday, May 20
Airports are all different, and services and amenities available at airports are all different. The time that I feel most vulnerable when traveling is when I have just landed at an airport in a foreign country and I need to find my way into town and to my accommodations. I am usually exhausted and sore from long hours in cramped conditions, and weighed down with luggage. First you have to go through passport control, then baggage pick-up, then customs. After that you are on your own. Advance research really helps. The internet is a traveler’s best friend. Google the airport’s website to learn about the layout of the port and to learn about ground transportation options. Make note of the location of the ATM machines. ATM’s are your best source for local currency. (Don’t forget to notify your bank that you will be traveling.) ATM’s give you the best exchange rate, for the lowest fees. Some banks (Charles Schwab) reimburse you for any ATM fees.
First stop, after customs is the bathroom. Airport bathrooms are so much better than airplane bathrooms. Second stop is the ATM. For security reasons, make sure the one you use is associated with a major bank.Third stop is the Tourist Information Desk (if there is one) to get a free map of the city. Then you step outside and find your way to the bus, or train, or taxi.
For our arrival in Dublin, I had pre-purchased an airport transit and 2 day hop-on-hop-off sightseeing bus package. So the bus took us to it’s stop on O’Conoll Street. We found a Vodaphone shop, and negotiated a data package and installed an Irish SIM card into Trog’s smartphone. With guidance from Google Maps, it was a fairly pleasant walk to our hostel.