A cow of an airport – Zurich

Those of you that have read my post earlier this year about the Swiss Air airport lounge will know there is room for improvement. I can report there was no improvement in the service and this time the whole Zurich airport was an unpleasant adventure. You might think I am ungrateful in that I was lucky to be there in the first place however when my treats are based around my travel adventures I want the circumstances to be pleasant. All of the time.

Swiss promotional plane at Zurich

Swiss promotional plane at Zurich

Interested in how I came to title this blog? I was not going to be so obvious about my complaints regarding the ultra bad airport signage. When we walked down the air bridge to the plane or should I say returned up the air bridge to go down another air bridge to board due to another bad sign……. I saw the plane was covered with coloured promotional paintings including a cow. It is not easy to find photos to include in a blog about bad service so I quickly snapped a picture of the cow to include some graphic entertainment. My photographic skills are adequate however the design was not suited to photograph. So the cow is the pink and yellow blob after the word Zurich.

The title fits that sarcastic tone I can get when annoyed.

The “cow of a-time” just summed up our movements around Zurich airport. Even with an experienced traveller, it was interesting. The airport signage was plentiful however misleading, totally incorrect or lead you to parts of the airport closed off from access to the area you were searching to find. From the beginning to the end we took directions from signs that mislead us. Without the help of security staff activating doors or redirecting us through doors that really looked more like ones for security guards than passengers, we would still be wandering around looking for the lounge and then the gate.

Help from the Security Staff

You could tell the security staff were frustrated constantly being questioned by passengers for directions. Even with the language differences you only had to start asking a question about directions and they understood. I assumed it was from the high number of times they had to help lost passengers. Instead of finishing off conservations with a farewell each conversation ended with “hurry”.  Security staff knew from experience passengers needed to be rushing towards the gates to catch their plane. Was this due to the bad signage?

Zurich Airport

Zurich Airport

You might be imaging an airport with crowds moving back and forth fighting past each other while trying to find their way. Totally not so. It was vast, even empty in parts as we traversed up and down levels and back and forth. Passengers faced looked lost and frustrated.

At one point we needed to ride a train to get from one part to another. It had three carriages. We had a carriage to ourselves. I must admit it was very clean. Clean does not equate to comfort as a traveller. There are other requirements. The sense of security knowing you are heading in the right direction would help.

Fix the Signage

The sad thing was they believed it was the fault of the American security requirements that caused this problem. And yes while the Americans do have requirements these are not new. Other countries/airports with planes going to the USA must meet the requirements so Zurich airport is not in a different situation. At no stage would security demand bad signage around the whole airport including sections handling passengers disembarking, transferring passengers or those embarking for non-American locations.

So get real and fix the signage!