My Airfone Adventure on United

Sometimes I could kill myself for not anticipating problems before they occur.
Last Thursday (after my redeye nightmare) I flew from Chicago to Frankfurt on United. My upgrade to business class cleared, I had an aisle seat assigned, and I had worked the previous seven hours straight in the ...

Scary Flight Experience

I've written about the scariest in-flight experience I have ever had, but I think last night may have been even worse. I'm still trying to process how much was reality and how much was nightmare.
I was on a redeye from Los Angeles to Chicago and had nodded off to sleep using my new sure-fire ...

Malaysia Airlines 747 Hijacks My A380!

Malaysia Airlines has six three A380s that are utilized to operate two daily flights between Kuala Lumpur and London, though apparently that is logistically impossible for the troubled carrier. To wit, the carrier has brought a 747-400 out of retirement with a dated business and first class product ...

Malaysia Airlines CEO Christoph Mueller Resigns

Malaysia Airlines CEO Christoph Mueller -- the man with 25 years of airline experience who turned around Aer Lingus -- is leaving Malaysia Airlines "due to a change in his personal circumstances" less than halfway through his contract. His departure throws the carrier's restructuring plans into ...

Delta Slashes Telephone Booking Fee and Business Class Award Prices

Times are good for U.S. airlines and times are especially good for Delta Air Lines, which continues to report surging profit. In this era of low oil prices and profitability, Delta is rolling back some of the odious fees levied when times were less optimistic...and also appears to have cut award ...

90 Years of United History in One Minute

Yesterday I shared 15 Cool Facts About United Airlines and today I want to share a cool video UA put together tracing back the many companies and subdivisions that eventually coalesced to form the United Airlines we know today.
Logos and corporate branding are a particular interest of ...

15 Cool Facts About United Airlines

United Airlines celebrates its 90th birthday today and has been my airline of choice for more than a decade. I've flown over a million miles in "the Friendly Skies" and have no plans to shift that loyalty.
While contemporary United is mocked derisively for mimicking Delta rather than ...

It's Official! Alaska and Virgin America Announce Merger (FAQs)

Alaska Airlines and Virgin America have formally announced a merger agreement in which Alaska will acquire Virgin America for $2.6BN. No, April Fools was four days ago.
I'll try to sum it up through a series of frequently asked questions (FAQs):
Q: Why are Alaska and Virgin ...

FTU Signature Event in Las Vegas April 29 - May 01, 2016

Frequent Traveler University (FTU) is coming to Las Vegas later this month and there is still time attend this event if you have not already signed up. From April 29 through May 01, 2016 you can hang out in the (other) city that never sleeps with people who eat, sleep, and drink miles, points, ...

Alaska Airlines Blames "Travel Hacking" for Emirates Devaluation

Alaska Airlines has taken a ton of heat today for its decision to raise prices for business and first class tickets on Emirates by as much as 100%. Now it is defending itself on its blog, claiming that its old award chart was unsustainable and blaming "travel-hacking" for the change. It also ...

Emirates First Class Awards on Alaska DOUBLE in Price

Overnight and without notice, Alaska has massively devalued first class award cost on Emirates. 
This is unbelievable for an airline that has a such a good reputation.
The award charts are not even fully updated yet (Emirates to Europe still shows the old level) but what is ...

Hijacked EgyptAir Flight Lands in Cyprus

In a throwback to the "good old days" of pre-9/11 hijacking, an EgyptAir domestic flight traveling from Alexandria to Cairo was commandeered by a man claiming to have a bomb strapped to himself and forced to divert to Larnaca, Cyrpus. Most hostages have been released and according to the Cypriot ...

Last Day to Burn Your AA Miles Prior to Devaluation!

Monday, March 21, 2016 is the final day to use your AA miles at prevailing rates. On March 22nd a massive devaluation kicks in for premium cabin awards in nearly every region, making your AA miles much less valuable. But there is still time -- one more day -- to take advantage of some great deals on ...

Starwood Bidding War Begins

Breaking news this morning -- Starwood has accepted a bid of $78 cash per share by Chinese investor group Anbang, throwing a wrench into the Marriott - Starwood merger.
How could this be? Wasn't a contract with Marriott already signed?
Yes, Marriott and Starwood had signed ...
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This Rule is Vital for Maximizing Your AA Award

A handful of clients have contacted Award Expert this week requesting help "maximizing" AA awards prior to the devaluation on March 22, 2016. I don't mean the couples trying to get to Bangkok on Cathay Pacific or families booking summer vacations to Spain. Here, I am talking about the people who ...

American Tourism in Cuba is Now Legal

In a sweeping Executive Order ahead of his trip to Havana next week, U.S. President Barack Obama has essentially made tourism in Cuba legal for all Americans. And you thought Marco Rubio was shedding tears over losing Florida!
Up until now, independent travel to Cuba was "legal" only ...
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Two A380 First Class Flights for 40K AA Miles

AA is devaluing its award chart on March 22, 2016 but you've still got a week left to take advantage of the old chart. For 40K miles you can experience two of the world's finest first class products on the world's largest passenger aircraft.
Etihad Airways flies its A380 featuring first ...

United Airlines Shuffles Board as Oscar Munoz Readies Return

Two news items from United Airlines. First, Oscar Munoz will be back soon. Second, three new independent members to the Board have been appointed. Is there a link?
Munoz is already back in a decision-making capacity but will resume his CEO role on a full-time basis on March 14, 2016. In a ...

Singapore Will Resume Nonstop Flights to Los Angeles and Newark

Singapore Airlines has announced intentions to resume non-stop service from Singapore to New York City and Los Angeles with its newly-delivered Airbus A350 aircraft in 2018. 
Singapore Airlines spokesman James Bradbury-Boyd told View from the Wing:
Missing the ...