Finally in Portugal

So far, we have had an easy trip. Our 2:00 PM flight from Guadalajara to Dallas was on time. The four hours in DFW allowed us to have a bite to eat before boarding our almost 9-hour flight to Madrid. We were very fortunate to each have a three-seat row to crash on. With our blowup seat and neck pillows and plane’s blanket, we were pretty comfortable.

I got a few hours of sleep, which is pretty good for me. The inflight entertainment had lots of options, so awake time wasn’t too horrible. Flying a US airline (American) meant crummy food for dinner and breakfast this morning. When we return, we fly Iberia from Lisbon to Guadalajara via Madrid and Mexico City. I am convinced (or at least hoping) that the food will be an improvement over the long flight here.

For those who have been in the Madrid airport, it is huge, architecturally attractive and has amazing restaurants, food stalls, and shopping. Just looking

Long hallways to gates at
Madrid Airport

at the food, the Iberian ham, salads, and tapas, make your mouth water. We had a couple of hours there, which is sufficient to pick up bags and re-check them to Porto. However, it was not necessary, as our bags went straight through. We love Madrid and recommend it highly as a vacation destination.

Walking this airport is definitely a challenge, though. We didn’t see any golf carts or other mechanical means of getting to the distant gates. I guess you either hoof it or use a wheelchair! As you can see, our Porto connecting flight is at Gate 87 and they went up to Gate 95.

By the way, I used my brand new Czech/EU passport for immigration in Madrid. It was the speediest way to go. Jim went through the regular line with the other hundreds of travelers, taking over a half hour. Woo hoo!

And for anyone traveling to or through the US, definitely get the Mobile Passport app on your phone if you don’t already have Global Entry. It isn’t available at all US airports, but most, and it eliminates the waiting lines for immigration.
Nothing exciting during the one hour flight from Madrid to Porto. We didn’t have to go through immigration again, even though Portugal is a different country than Spain. Once you are in the EU, you are in everywhere. The Brits will have quite a shock after the end of October if they are out of the EU then.
Porto was pretty foggy. The 20-minute taxi ride to our hotel, practically overlooking the Atlantic (if we could really see it), and we are finally settled into our room. Jim is exhausted due to lack of sleep but we will go to bed at our normal time, even though we are six hours ahead of Guadalajara time.
We will have breakfast in the morning and then meet up with our guide and the group for a tour of Porto. The temps are cool, 68-70F for the high. No problem, because as we go south, the temperatures will be warmer.

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