United Brings Back Early Boarding for Families with Children


Starting Monday, 15 February 2016 United Airlines will bring back aircraft pre-boarding for families with young children aged two and under.
The new boarding priority will be:
People with disabilities / active-duty members of the military in uniform / families with small ...
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United Airlines Announces San Francisco to Singapore Route on 787-9


United Airlines has announced plans to offer daily non-stop service from San Francisco to Singapore beginning 01 June 2016 on its 787-9 aircraft. The new route will be one of the world's longest at 8,446 miles (second only to Dallas to Sydney on Qantas...for now). Further paring back its Tokyo ...
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Alaska Airlines Brand Refresh


For the first time in a quarter century, Alaska Airlines is refreshing its brand image in a major way, with changes coming to everything from credit cards to aircraft livery.

Why the change now? Isn't one of Alaska's best selling points that while other carriers are changing (for ...
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My Incredible Amtrak Guest Rewards Redemption


Amtrak is devaluing its Guest Rewards program tomorrow, so if you are sitting on any sizable quantity of Amtrak points and thinking about a long-distance journey in the next year, you need to call Guest Rewards at 1-800-307-5000 before midnight ET this evening to book.
Wanting ...
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UberX Finally Available at LAX


After months of behind-the-scenes negotiations with recalcitrant regulators, UberX will finally be allowed to pick up passengers at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) starting today, January 20, 2016, at 8am PT.
Uber has suffered a string of setbacks in trying to bring its low-cost ...

United Global Services and 1K Members Now Get Free Food in Economy Class


Rumors have been swirling over the last few days that United Airlines' top-tier elite members would receive complimentary food in addition to complimentary alcoholic beverages when flying in economy class. I reached out to United for confirmation on Monday via Twitter and heard nothing ...
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Amal Clooney Cautions Against Visiting Maldives


Human Rights lawyer Amal Clooney was on Meet the Press on Sunday to discuss the Maldives...not a usual topic for the Sunday morning talk shows. I found the segment fascinating and encourage you to watch it in its entirety--

What really made me stop and think was her statement that, ...
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LifeMiles Mixed Cabin Redemptions Now Possible

In a surprising move that suddenly makes Avianca LifeMiles much more valuable, mixed cabin awards are now bookable! First, business, and economy class can now be mixed on a single itinerary, with the highest cabin establishing the price of the award.
Up until now if you booked a first class ...

Full Hot Meal on a 1hr Economy Class Flight

Hop on an 11.5hr flight from Newark to Honolulu on United Airlines in economy class and you’ll be given the choice to buy a meal or snackbox onboard.  Don’t want to spend anything? Coffee, tea, or soft drinks (and a stroopwafel starting next month) will have to hold you over. On the ...
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In the Maldives, When They Say No Alcohol, They Mean No Alcohol

The Maldives is not the only nation that take a hard-line stance against alcohol, but it certainly is one of the more paradoxical examples. While the nation maintains a strict Islamic façade, it looks the other way as dozens of luxury resorts scattered across its sprawling atolls not only ...
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When is a Vacation Too Long?


I'm back from a very long trip...the longest trip I've ever taken.
I realize some of you will snicker when I reveal my vacation was only 3.5 weeks, but for someone who is used to taking 2-3 day trips, this was a total change of pace.
My introduction to Etihad Airways, with four ...
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United CEO Oscar Munoz Receives Heart Transplant!


United CEO Oscar Munoz, who suffered a heartback and was forced to temproraily step down just weeks into his tenure, recevied a heart transplant on Wednesday.
United isssued the following statement:
Our president and CEO, Oscar Munoz, underwent a heart transplant operation early ...

New "Economy Plus Essentials" and "Economy Plus Enhanced" Bundles on United

Airlines are in the business of profiting from ancillary fees and both Delta and American have already introduced bundled packages for economy class passengers that include perks like extra legroom, lounge access, checked baggage, and priority security and boarding. United has now debuted its own ...
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New Year's Eve Gala Dinner at Park Hyatt Goa


As I mentioned yesterday, my wife and I rang in the new year in Goa at the Park Hyatt, a lush resort complex nestled in a very picturesque part of India. As is the case with many resorts over the New Year's holiday, a "compulsory gala dinner" was part of the package, here at a cost of INR ...
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A Premature Evaluation of 2015

It is the last day of 2015 but I think it is still too premature to evaluate the year. Award Expert and this blog continue to grow, I appeared on TV three times, was quoted in several publications, spoke at a handful of travel conferences, and I even bought a house in LA and got into better ...
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Are the Etihad First Class A380 Apartments Worthwhile?

Etihad has released a generous amount of first class award space on its A380 Abu Dhabi to New York Kennedy flight. Etihad's trend-setting "First Apartments" on this flight certainly set a standard for spaciousness in a first class seat. But is all the hype worth it?
My wife and I flew in the ...
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2015 Airline Christmas Videos


Merry Christmas from Germany! I am spending my first ever Christmas away from Los Angeles with my wife's family. There is something magical about being in Germany for Christmas and I am looking forward to relaxing and recharging for the next three weeks in preparation for a busy 2016.
A ...

LAX TSA Chorus Sings Christmas Carols

A volunteer cadre of Transportation Security Administration (TSA) agents at Los Angeles International Airport has assembled into a singing group, called the LAX TSA Chorus. And they're not bad either...not too bad...
I took the videos below five years ago and never posted them because I ...
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Last Day to Purchase Discounted Alaska Miles

We've seen a renaissance of attractive mileage sales this season and one of the leaders in hawking points has been Alaska Airlines, which has a great loyalty program with attractive redemption partners like Emirates and Cathay Pacific.
The current sale is targeted by individual with a discount ...
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