By June Ramli
For a country that is supposedly having some kind of cold war with China, imagine my surprise when I had to wait approximately about two hours and 21 minutes just to get discounted tickets to Hong Kong today.
Some six thousand odd discounted tickets were up for grabs this afternoon via Cathy Pacific for residents based in Australia and New Zealand.
I almost got the tickets but when it came to payment the website crashed and I was placed back in line again.
Mind you, this was after I waited for more than two hours just to get to the frontline.
Before the website crashed, I only managed to score discounted tickets to Hong Kong via Brisbane as the allocation for Sydney, where I am based, and Melbourne had been completely snapped up.
Besides Brisbane, there were allocations left for those interested to explore Hong Kong from Perth.
I chose Brisbane because it was closer to Sydney.
But alas, it was not meant to be.
But I did get screenshots of what was supposed to be.
The original ticket price was close to $2,000 one way but the return was zero, and by the time I keyed in the discounted code it had been reduced to $557.32 for both ways.
However, I couldn’t secure the tickets as the system had crashed on me and when I got in again, I realized that the allocation for Brisbane had been fully taken up.
The only discounted flights available from Australia to Hong Kong were those from Perth.
Getting to Perth from Sydney is no problem for me but then when I was ready to key in the dates and make payment, the system froze again and I was left with the very difficult decision to ultimately give up on my quest to visit Hong Kong.
After a couple of minutes of crying myself a river, I started to write this column.
In conclusion, despite the amount of rubbish the Australian government churns out to discredit the Chinese among its citizens and residents, there are still ample people in Australia who are very curious about China.
Hong Kong has always been on my travel list.
I have always had the urge to go and visit the place since I saw a documentary about Hong Kong’s pink dolphins which are apparently on the verge of extinction but alas it was not meant to be.
Perhaps, I would be lucky the next time around.
June Ramli is the editor of DailyStraits.com. To stay in touch with June, look her up on Twitter @junesairaramli