Tuesday, October 14, 2008


It seems unreasonable that coming to Amman from Damascus should take longer than coming from London. But that’s what happened to hundreds of travelers last week, three whom I know personally who waited on the Jordanian side from one and a half to six hours. Yes, it was the time that many Kuwaitis and Saudis visiting Syria needed to get home and many of them did that via Jordan. Still, knowing this is a peak season every year, you would expect at least our side of the border to be better prepared. Alas, it wasn’t so.

There were only two lines for the cars and not enough people to check and stamp passports. Even returning Jordanians had to join the crowd in front of a counter manned by only two men. They did their best but, as there are no winding barriers to form narrow queues, it was basically a free for all. Four to five people would arrive at the counter at once and thrust forward their passport or passports while two or three others would approach from the side, having skipped the line entirely, and throw their passports up onto the counter.

A simple solution of just having a couple more men on duty and a few winding barriers for the queues, including one for women, would help to keep an orderly line and would do much to solve the problem.

Parking could also be improved with a few lines on the pavement and a few people directing the parking, lest one wait all that time and then find his/her car blocked by others parked in totally random positions as is the case at present.

I’m all for e-government in Jordan but first let’s just get the basics in order...................z


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