Myanmar doesn’t work like most countries in the world and it took us awhile to figure that out. After some bad luck with our initial hotel booking, we learned that the best way to book a hotel in Myanmar was to email the hotel directly.
So now we were home free? But no, we still had to figure out how to book a flight in a country that didn’t yet accept credit cards.
Date: Tue, 19 Nov 2013 12:48:20 +0630
Subject: Re: Booking RSVN-WEB
Welcome to Air Mandalay!
Your booking is confirmed.
6T402 Y 21NOV’13 MDL-HEH – 0845 / 0920 KK2 (USD 60 for one person)
The total airfare for this booking is 2 persons * 60 USD (inclusive of insurance and fuel surcharge) = 120 USD
Upon arrival in Yangon, you can pick-up your tickets at Air Mandalay Office and pay in cash USD. We would like to inform you that credit is not acceptable at this moment.
Please pick-up the tickets at our head office at least 3 days before of your travel date – in case this is not possible for you (because of late arrival in Myanmar) please let me know what date and approximate time you will come and pick-up the tickets.
REMARK: If you do not pick up your tickets 1 day before of your departure, your flight reservation will already be canceled. Our head office opens from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm (weekdays) and from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm (weekends).
Thank you for your booking with Air Mandalay – I do hope you will enjoy your visit to my country!
What a disaster! I almost succumbed to hysterics.
But Al carted me back to the money-changing place, which also turned out to be a travel agency.
The agent booked us a flight on a different airline and handed us our paper tickets. I should note here that we had to pay cash for the tickets in the form of pristine US dollar bills. We haven’t yet seen the only ATM in Mandalay, and having to pay cash for everything has us a bit worried about whether we have budgeted enough for this portion of our trip.
The next day, when we arrived at the airport, a flurry of eight attendants booked us in. We each received boarding cards and stickers to attach to our shirts.
We were flying with Yangon Airways, whose logo is a flying white elephant.
“Do we really want to get on a plane whose company logo is a flying white elephant?”
“Well”, Al commented, “at least it’s not a flying pink elephant…”
In lieu of a functioning weigh scale, one of the attendants picked up our suitcases and hefted it a couple of time to determine the weight. And we were off…
…arriving safe in Heho Airport with another flurry of attendants.
And then into our waiting cab, which had been organized by the Teakhouse Guesthouse where we were staying.More about our 2013 trip to Myanmar.