Woke up pretty early to get to the Munich airport. Marie & I purchased the Bayern ticket again which allowed us to use one single ticket for the trip to the airport. My flight was at around 8am and we arrived at the terminal at around 7am, so I was rushing. Marie had a couple of hours to spare since her flight to Zurich was not until 9am. At the counter, I was offered 400 euros in exchange for a my seat. Apparently, the Istanbul flight was packed up to the rafters. Who am I to refuse? So, I signed up & crossed my fingers. The immigration counter took a while in Munich, so by the time I arrived at the gate, the passengers were already boarding and my “volunteer” spot had been given away to another volunteer. Darn! It would have been awesome to receive a free ticket from a free ticket. (I’m using my miles on this trip so I only paid no more than $100 for everything.)
I have no complaints flying with Lufthansa. The service in couch was fantastic, plus wine was served in all of their flights. I arrived in Istanbul after around 1pm, and the lines to get out of the airport were ridiculously long. It was essentially a melting pot. Flights from Asia, Europe, Africa, U.S. and the Middle East converged in this historic city that spurred the human civilization. I was in line for more than an hour.
I was fortunate to be picked up by my friend, Faris. He dropped me off at my hostel in New Istanbul (Hostelon) after he showed me his place.