January 17, 2011

Strange numbering system in Jakarta

As a fairly seasoned traveller I tend to be on auto pilot when traversing the local airports here. On Sunday morning whilst travelling back from Jakarta to Singapore I encountered a situation that totally stumped me.

For those of you who have not been to Soekarno-Hatta airport before all the check in desks are laid out consecutively from 1-100+. As usual I entered the airport around half way point and found that Tiger airways were using desk 101. Its a fair walk to the end and after passing desk 98 the next few were closed and had no number. I continued to walk and ended upon the domestic section without any luck finding the Tiger airways check in crew. Walking back the other way musing to myself wondering if the previous night had affected more than I thought I still couldn’t find the desk. After walking back almost to where I started I gave in and asked for help. The kind Thai airways staff pointed me towards the start of the desks. Despite highlighting that my desk was at 101 and not number 1 they insisted it was correct.

Sceptical  and wondering if they were trying to inflict more pain on tired looking bule I forced quick smile followed by a terima kasih I carried on walking. After a few minutes I finally I found my desk #101.

Mystery solved, the numbering system at the airport is as follows:
  • 1,2,3-24
  • Followed by 99, 100,101. 102
  • Followed by 25-98 then followed by a few unnumbered desks

Is it a ploy to make people late so they miss their flights thus making more money for Tiger?  

I doubt it so help me here understand why some idiot designed the system like this?

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