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Horrible staff at Barajas airport

london
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for Nile River Valley
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Horrible staff at Barajas airport

We recently changed flights from LHR hrough to Havana at Barajas, Madrid, without comming out to the landside. We had to go through an additional security scanner in a tiny space in the basement. The staff were really rude and unpleasant. They took away the water everyone had just bought for the plane thinking they were already through security, and would not even let us drink it. They took away duty free and subjected it to tests for some reason. They had to call someone down from elsewhere in the airport to do this and there was a considerable delay which could have resulted in someone missing a flight. There was no explanation at all. Same thing happened in both directions.These were the nastiest airport staff I have met for a very long time, very unpleasant indeed. It left a lalsting impression on me. So don't buy water or duty free when you land in Madrid.

London, United...
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1. Re: Horrible staff at Barajas airport

How were they nasty unpleasant and rude please? I've been through Madrid and never encountered that. The staff I encountered were just doing their jobs, particularly in light of the fact Madrid has more terrorism concerns than most other Western European countries.

You seem to have forgotten to tell us how they were nasty whilst you were ranting about your water being taken and throwing insults at them.

I assume the duty free was given back and no one missed their flight, so other than your water being removed at security, which it nearly always is, maybe you can explain how they were nasty etc?

Thanks.

Helsinki, Finland
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2. Re: Horrible staff at Barajas airport

The protocol would be the same in every airport. At least in Heathrow and Helsinki (where you can take duty free liquids through the security only if they're in a sealed bag and bought from certain listed countries/ airlines and even then they will be examined in a specific machine designed for analyzing liquids). The airport websites explain the whole thing.

Dublin, Ireland
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3. Re: Horrible staff at Barajas airport

<<putting Barajas on my list of airports not to connect through

london
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for Nile River Valley
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4. Re: Horrible staff at Barajas airport

Why should you imagine that I ranted or thrw insults? I explained that I had bought the water airside and asked them politely in Spanish if I could drink my water. They said no very rudely. They did the same to another lady on my return trip. I have been through a lot of airports recently, and have accordingly been subject to a lot of random tests. I know when people are being rude, and these people were. They were sullen, aggressive and offensive.

London, United...
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5. Re: Horrible staff at Barajas airport

I meant ranting and throwing insults in your opening post,,,not at the airport! Lol.

Bangkok
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for Bangkok, Air Travel, Thailand
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6. Re: Horrible staff at Barajas airport

Hi,

"We had to go through an additional security scanner in a tiny space in the basement. The staff were really rude and unpleasant."

==> There isn't a whole lot up to here that really says what exactly they did, or didn't do, that created this perception of "rude" or even "unpleasant".. That said, I think there's a balance here.. Security needs to be done, so whether anyone may like it, or agree with it, is largely immaterial - it needs to be done.. On the same side, I also think that is can be done in a professional manner; and it should be done as such.

"They took away the water everyone had just bought for the plane thinking they were already through security, and would not even let us drink it."

==> Two different issues here. It sounds as if the confiscation was proper -- so any negative related to that isn't really going to have merit (again, so long as the seizure was in line with existing policy).

As to the not being able to drink it" part goes.. I think that IF you wanted to drink it, eat it, consume it, then you should be free to do so -- but -- I also think that should be done outside of the actual screening area itself, and once you're done, that you must re-submit to screening again.

While not a true apples-to-apples case, I've seen this occur in Honolulu, Bangkok and San Fran before.. and in those cases the passenger was allowed to retain the item, exit security (with all their possessions) and consume it; then return (and queue again) to be re-screened.. I think that this could be an option in many cases - but I recognize that not every airports security layout permits this.

"They took away duty free and subjected it to tests for some reason. They had to call someone down from elsewhere in the airport to do this and there was a considerable delay which could have resulted in someone missing a flight."

==> Again, sounds like the proper procedure was in place for the inspection of STEBS bags.. but I also think that there's a reasonable expectation of sufficient security staffing relative to the workload/passenger load in place at that time.

Overall, as I read it, it doesn't sound as if MAD airport security did anything overtly "wrong" or outside of applicable rules per se, only that perhaps the *how* things were done could have been better.

Travel Safe,

Edited: 03 May 2014, 21:32
London, United...
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7. Re: Horrible staff at Barajas airport

That's the point though.

So far the staff have been called " sullen, aggressive, offensive, nasty, unpleasant, horrible and rude" by the op.

With no explanation of what they said to unleash this torrent other than " said no rudely" to the op and another lady, to drinking their water. I'm not sure how you say just that one word rudely, to be honest though,

Anyway, verity, please post again and clearly outline what was said and by whom to cause you to publicly say these things.

Manchester, United...
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8. Re: Horrible staff at Barajas airport

Transferring at many airports (especially European and US ones) is seldom anything but a miserable experience.

OP should try transferring at LHR and she will soon realise that the British are just as bad - if not worse - than the Spaniards (though most LHR security staff are not actaully British, but nevermind).

This is just a brief part of the journey where numpty staff will make up the rules as they go along. What was acceptable last week is suddenly forbidden, but over in Line 12 it is ok. If Al Qaeda achieved anything after 9/11, it was to ensure that airports are a terrible experience. Of course, there are some exceptions (HEL, as mentioned before, is lovely) but generally the major transfer hubs are a nightmare.

Shropshire
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9. Re: Horrible staff at Barajas airport

Hi. I had similar unpleasent exprience at Madrid airport last year. We had not expected any additional security check as we were in transit. We had all water and soft drinks just bought taken away and whole place looked for me very gloomy and I just thought that we got lost. Staff was not helpful and when the lady in a front of me forgot to take medicines they just throw it out to the bin.

10. Re: Horrible staff at Barajas airport

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