How did we not win?!

Last week I attended United Airlines' fleet week at SFO which included a plane pulling competition. An Airbus A320, recently saved from TED hell, was on the apron with a long rope attached to the pull bar.

Along with 19 (26?) other FlyerTalk readers we lined up for a quick photo:


Somehow we finished second.

Special thanks to Joe Jusai ( for taking the photos.



Northwest Airlines NWA bag tag - collectors item?

I ordered a Northwest luggage tag after reading Gary's post as a memento before the airline disappears. As I have no particular affiliation to NW and I foolishly printed my own name (instead of something generic I could sell on ebay!) what should I do with it? Should I keep it pristine in the drawer or use it today on my flight since my (also defunct) Ansett bag tag is wearing thin?


Elite Qualifying Miles (EQM) vs Redeemable Miles (RDM)

When you are new to the frequent flyer game there is always some confusion regarding earned miles for redeeming awards (RDM) versus the miles used to qualify for elite status (EQM). From a listener:
"I was planning on going for Executive Platinum (EXP) this year.  Question: I have just ...

Aadvantage 500 Mile Upgrade "Stickers"

A reader wrote in to ask:
"Do you have to use 500 mile coupons for every upgrade?"
As an American Airlines Aadvantage Gold (GLD) or Platinum (PLT) member you need 500 mile upgrade coupons (more affectionately known as "stickers" from the days when they were actually stickers applied to ...

Dear [email protected] - Where's the beef?

On the occasion that my upgrade does not clear (gasp!) I have the treat of purchasing some in flight deliciousness including the current Boston Market (BM) sandwiches and salads. A few months ago I bought the pre-BM turkey sandwiches for $6 which were dry and bready, but I didn't realize how good it ...

Searching Airfares by Fare Class

So you've decided to take the American Airlines challenge and need to book your flights. Remember the challenge is based on points not miles. So we need to search for specific fare classes - unless you are indepentently wealthy, of course.

American is one of the few airlines that still ...

American Airlines Challenge

In the last post we mentioned the American Airlines challenge. This challenge allows someone without elite status to fly a reduced number of miles to reach status more quickly. Normally one must fly 25,000, 50,000, or 100,000 miles per year to attain Gold, Platinum, or Executive Platinum status on ...

American Airlines Points versus Miles

In the next few posts I will be explaining some technical differences in the way American Airlines counts miles towards status and rewards.

The American Airlines AAdvantage frequent flyer program uses two different counting systems to reach elite status. First, there is the traditional ...
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The Upgrd Podcast One Year On

It's been a year since I met Ben and Fozz in San Francisco and said "somebody should do a podcast". Little did I know how quickly we would work on it and how much content we would produce.

A few weeks and a few emails later we were in business. Almost 40 podcasts later we have ...