We set off on our United Arab Emirates journey on Sunday morning for JFK airport with the hopes of swinging by the new Freedom tower on the way. Unfortunately, a few missed turns and some heavy traffic later, we abort our mission to the Freedom Tower, only blocks away. We arrived at JFK with plenty time to spare, made our way through security (it’s amazing how easy it is without car seats to schlep!) and into the Lufthansa lounge with much time to spare.
But, the kids were fried. Done. They didn’t want to have to wait in yet one more location for our flight. We managed to get a semblance of a dinner into them in hopes that they’d be asleep long before the dinner service on the flight began. That wish ended up not coming true, however, they did manage to keep it together in the lounge until it was time for us to head to the gate.
We had prepared the kids for what the flight would be like by showing them the video of Austrian Airlines business class and letting them know that their seats would fold down like a bed and that they would be sleeping on the airplane. And even though they both did not nap at all during the day, they managed to hang on for about the first two hours of the flight before finally passing out.
Upon arrival in Vienna, we had a long 4 hour layover in front of us. Normally a 4 hour layover is a piece of cake for us, but the kids did not want to have to wait around anymore. They kept busy by coloring, playing made up card games, and watching a movie on the Kindle, but by the time the layover hit 3.5 hours, they had had enough…
Finally, we boarded our flight to Dubai. Lachlan loved the touch screen videos and games and preoccupied himself with the entertainment. Ainsley struggled to keep her eyes open. And on our taxi out of Vienna, she fell asleep. She slept solidly for two hours while I got to enjoy our inflight meal service but pretty much as soon as the meal service was over, she woke up. No sleep for me! Meanwhile, Lachlan passed out as soon as the meal was over.
After our four hour flight, they were ready to be off the plane. We arrived early, made it through passport control and customs in no time and then found our bags. We had priority tags on our luggage given that we had flown in business class so our bags were the first ones off. However, we had checked the car seats in the car seat bag and that one was missing. We waited until the last bag had come off the carousel before we realized that it had been delivered to another area where the oversized bags go. At least we had all of our luggage…
Waiting for us outside of customs was a representative of the Hyatt. Two minutes later our driver showed up and escorted us to the waiting Audi that would transport us to the Grand Hyatt. Wow. I don’t believe I have ever been in such a nice car before. Normally our hotel transportation is in some sort of van or bus. I guess this was an appropriate introduction to Dubai. They do things differently here.
It was a quick check in, no suite available for our first night but we would be moving to our suite the second night (today). The kids passed out quickly and slept 12 hours straight. We normally like to get up on local time, but given their sleep deficit, we let them sleep in. The plan is not to nap and stay up a little longer tonight.
Anyway, that’s a quick summary of our first day. There have been challenges with sleep deprived kids, but nothing we didn’t expect or haven’t dealt with before! We’re excited to get out and explore the city and will post an update as soon as we’re able!