I figured since I am flying Air China and I am a Star Alliance Gold member why not book directly with Air China instead of www.ctrip.com. Wrong idea!!! After spending close to 3 hours trying to meet the use of a non-Chinese credit card I gave up with the bureaucracy of Air China. I must say they had an English help line and all that did was add time. They asked for a fax of the front and back of my credit card and a form with info from the card along with other info and my signature. Who uses faxes any more? I figured I could take a picture with my iPhone and e-mail to myself and fill in the form, then attach to an e-mail. The card pictures were okay and they could not open the file I filled in and returned. They did not call to say they had an issue I had to call them and they told me the file would not open. It was suggested I take a picture of the screen of my computer to send a picture. I don’t know if you have ever tried to write your signature with a mouse? It does not look normal and my signature is a scribble and rarely looks the same twice, I wrote rotten.
I figured I would try using Pages on my iPad as Mac software sometimes is easier and the iPad should be easier to write on for my signature and it is more flexible than the slightly larger than a Netbook I carry. So bought Pages from the App store and it started loading. With a pause in the middle the app was loaded in over 3 hours. Long after Air China would hold my reservation. I have to say I do have a relatively fast Internet connection at the hotel I am staying at. Maybe China traffic or server issues?
So after close to 3 hours I canceled the reservation I had with Air China and they ended up paying a commission to Ctrip for my flight.
So much for Star Alliance!!! At least in China. They were very helpful rerouting me after losing a connection on the way here.