Frequent Flyer Plan

It pays to have a frequent flyer number. What, don’t believe me? If you fly to a lindy event at least once a month, it’s worth your while.

On average, it costs me $30 each way to check a bag. Let’s say I do one round-trip each month for a year: 12 months x $60 = $720. Holy cow, think of what you could do with an extra $700. I can think of plenty….but let’s stay on topic here.

I fly. A lot. Maybe too much. The point is, that if I am already flying, I might as well get the miles. Kevin, on the other hand, didn’t focus on this the past year and now one of us has status on two airlines, and the other has status on none (how very Dr. Seuss of me!). All I had to remember to do was when I checked in, either online or in person, I made sure my frequent flyer number was in the system, and viola, I got miles.

But who should you join? I’ve joined the major groups so that I can get miles on just about everything, minus the puddle jumper while I am in Europe.

Northwest Airlines (now owned by Delta) – SKY TEAM – partners with

I like Air France, but I don’t like the CDG airport (Paris). If you fly through here, make sure you have at least an  hour layover otherwise you might miss your flight because you won’t physically be able to get to your gate in time. I am serious….consider this your warning! KLM is a favorite. I just flew Korean Air and I liked it. The bathroom areas were hidden, so they felt a bit more private, and the soap in the restrooms smelled fantastic! They also offer complimentary tooth brushes! Final note, stay away from Aeroflot if you can. I think I’ve already written a blog about it, but it’s more like Aero-fuck if you ask me. I had a hellish time on them two years ago. Bad food, bad service, LONGass layover in Moscow. Stay away from them if you can. 😀

United Airlines – STAR ALLIANCE – partners with:

I like Lufthansa, SWISS, and Austrian Air, but the others I’ve flown, I don’t really like. US Airways is a little ghetto, United is snobby (yet I still have status with them), and LOT is kinda sketchy. Nonetheless, I have heard good things about bmi, Brussels Air, and Ana.

Alaska Airlines – Mileage Plan – partners with:

Mokulele Airlines
Northwest Airlines
PenAir
Qantas

“The airline’s frequent flyer program is called Mileage Plan. Alaska Airlines is not part of any of the three major airline alliances, but Mileage Plan airline partners include prominent members of SkyTeam, such as Delta Air Lines, Korean Air, Northwest Airlines, KLM, and Air France, as well as members of Oneworld, including American Airlines, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, and Qantas.”

When I lived on the West Coast, I would fly Alaska as often as I could. I really liked them. Once I moved to the East Coast, I started using NWA more (because they were partners) and kept my miles with Alaska. Unfortunately, Alaska values a number of airlines, but the love is not reciprocal. Sigh. My Alaska account primarily gets miles from American Airlines (which I don’t particularly like flying), British Airways, and Qantas.

Long of the short of it is: if you fly on a semi-regular basis, it’s worth joining one of the airlines alliances. Get miles, use them for vacation (I’ve done 3 trips down to Argentina on miles), check your luggage for free (yup, that’s a perk….perhaps the best one), get priority seating, get a special number to call for booking and/or help, and just feel special.

Trying to get Home

It’s the Monday following the 4th of July and I am still in Seattle. Not that that is a bad thing; however, I was supposed to be heading home at about 8am and here now my flight is not until 1:30pm.

I woke up at 7:15am, showered, wolfed down some breakfast and headed to the airport. My mom and I left early because we’d be driving at prime traffic time, and it’s Cruise Season, so most likely there was going to be a bunch of traffic this morning, yet there was not. So i arrive at about 8am and as I am looking at the monitor to figure out what gate I am departing from, I don’t see my flight up there. I went to the touch screen thingy and typed in my info and my flight had been moved to 11:45am. That kinda sucks because I was there so early, but it sucked even more because then I would only have 25 minutes to catch my next flight.

I head up to the Premier Desk (I didn’t belong there, but there was no one in line) and asked what time I’d get into SFO and then gave Carol my boarding passes and asked whether or not I could make my flight. All signs pointed to no. But just as luck would have it, I could be booked on another flight leaving at 11:30am and then transfer in Denver, which would get me home around midnight. Good news: I am still getting home
“today”. Bad news: it’s super later and I have a flight leaving for Sweden tomorrow at 1:15pm. I inquired to whether or not there were any other options and was then booked on the 1:45pm flight. Man, life is good.

So now my mum and I are paling around, running errands, and nibbling on tasty treats. We stopped by Tully’s to grab some coffee and I grabbed a Red Velvet cupcake at Cupcake Royal next door. Tasty goodness!! We headed home and I picked up the place while mummsy check the garage (apparently it had been broken into). What a morning!

Now we are at her office and I am blogging. I wanted to do some painting this weekend, but it will have to be another time.

Hopefully I’ll get home, grab more stuff for Herrang, run some errand, and then catch my next flight. What a life, eh?