After an enjoyable nine-hour flight in BA First Class at the pointy end of a 747, we gathered up our rollaboards and made our way through the scenic Vancouver Airport to the NEXUS machines, most of which were working (not always the case).
We experienced more of a lineup turning in our customs forms than we did at the NEXUS machines, but still got through in good time to catch the next hotel shuttle back to the Hampton Inn where we'd parked our car.
Our luck continued as we made good time down Highway 99 on this beautiful night to the Peace Arch border crossing, after a quick stop to pick up some duty-free booze.
Once the ICE inspector in the NEXUS booth found we'd just returned from Europe, he wanted to know if we were bringing back food (chocolates from the ship only), large amounts of cash (nope), or antiquities. Brian said the only antiquities in the car were the two of us, and he almost smiled and let us go.
We stopped at Edaleen Dairy in Blaine to pick up some milk and treat ourselves to a mocha before arriving home and going to bed almost immediately.
We got off our plane and made the long walk to the subway. We rode it to the final stop, the transfer point for connecting flights in other terminals.
We made another long walk with more escalators to take the 12-minute bus ride from Terminal 5 to Terminal 3 (the bus arrived just as we did!).
We made it through "Fast Track" with our dignity and belongings intact. All in all, the transfer took us about 60 minutes, far less than the official estimated 90-minute minimum transfer time.
Because we upgraded to British Airways First Class with points, we're entitled to use Cathay Pacific's First Class Lounge. As one of our favorite travel bloggers, Lucky of One Mile at a Time put it, we'd be fools not to go there instead of the BA Galleries Lounge.