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Tell everyone you know never to fly out of Edinburgh at 6:30am. Yesterday, my son drove us to the airport; we left Gullane at 4:50am and got to the turn-off into the airport approach at 5:25am. There we found ourselves in a mile-long tailback of cars and taxis, mostly the latter, and crawled all the way to the drop-off zone. That took 15 minutes. I had fast track security clearance, which you can buy on the airport website; it wasn’t fast because many others had bought it too, and because the entire security area, which is large, was thronged. We got to the gate just after 6 o’clock, as they began to board the flight.

What can the airport owners do about it? A separate Taxi zone with an approach through Ingliston? I don’t know, but they need to do something.


And one more thing; when you’re tight for time, it’s more than a little annoying to be sent on a winding route through the ‘duty free’ zone, before you actually enter the terminal.

Categories: General
  1. Diana
    September 2, 2015 at 10:29 am

    Of course you have to go through the duty free zone – for all those overpriced non-essentials they hope you will buy that are far cheaper at your destination.
    By the by, a friend of mine was refused permission to carry peanut butter and jam sandwiches through to the gate area at Heathrow. It was claimed that they might be a form of explosive, even when she offered to eat one. To think such idiots are in charge of our safety. Grrrr.

  2. September 2, 2015 at 10:31 am

    Peanut butter is a form of explosive, delayed action, if you lay it on too thick.

  3. September 2, 2015 at 10:36 am

    Actually Diana, as a rule I don’t have a problem with airport security. Yes, there was a beardless twerp in Newcastle last year, but he wasn’t actually in charge of anything, other than being at the centre of his own little zone of disaffection with his life and expressing it through sullen officiousness. Even in the US, where the TSA did some crazy stuff post-9/11, they all worked to the same rules and were unsmilingly polite.

  4. Diana
    September 2, 2015 at 2:38 pm

    I agree with you that airport safety is, on the whole, a good thing. The worst non-smilers I have found were in Los Angeles. Hooston – we were cracking jokes! A smile wouldn’t hurt, though. Immigration officers are, after all, the first people you meet in a new country. A scowl, a hand held out and “Passport” snarled at you does not give a pleasant impression.

  5. George
    September 2, 2015 at 4:41 pm

    Hi Quintin, I think you were just unlucky. We arrived at airport at 7am yesterday, 5 mins waiting for drop off area and then just 10 minutes to get through security. Third time through the airport in last three weeks and it’s been fine every time. Seems to be hit or miss.

  6. September 2, 2015 at 5:23 pm

    I went for another 6:30 flight last month and had exactly the same experience. Sorry George, that’s not luck. It’s inadequate facilities, bad planning, uncaring management, or all three.

  7. Catherine Booth
    September 4, 2015 at 6:05 pm

    Hi Quintin
    I have read all your books and I have really enjoyed all of them. Do you think you might get up to Aberdeen for a book reading?

    • September 5, 2015 at 8:08 am

      I was in Aberdeen last November, for Scottish Book Week. Trust me, you don’t want to hear me read. I’m a writer, not an actor. Jim Bryce does it far better than I ever could, on the audio books.

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