Emirates A380 First Class In 10 Pictures

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Hello from Dubai! Ford and I just took the 15hr10min flight on Emirates in first class from Los Angeles (this was a paid first class fare, thanks to an amazing fare sale Emirates published last year, which will earn us a ton of Alaska miles). While I’ll have a full trip report soon, in this post I wanted to share my initial impressions.

While I flew Emirates’ new 777 first class earlier this year, it has been a couple of years since I’ve flown Emirates’ A380 first class, which I typically consider to be the most fun first class products in the world… and this flight reinforced that.

On the surface Emirates’ A380 first class cabin isn’t that private or spacious, as it has 14 seats, but in my experience it’s rarely more than half full (on this flight there were four other passengers).

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18 Beautiful Villages And Towns In Spain To Visit

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Spain is one of those countries that’s totally different depending on which region you visit. I mean, it’s pretty vast (by European standards, at least), with places like the Basque Country, Catalonia and the Mediterranean Coast being some of the most stunning spots to explore. That being said, with so many, it’s quite easy to … Continue Reading

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When Will American Open Three Remaining Flagship Lounges?

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The past couple of years we’ve seen both American and United invest in their premium international lounges, which has been great for passengers. With United having recently made quite a bit of progress with the opening of their premium lounges, I thought it was time to check up on how American is doing.

One of the things that impressed me most about American’s Flagship Lounges is the speed at which they opened them. Airport construction is often delayed, so when you combine that with the pace at which airlines take on most projects, I typically have pretty low expectations.

However, over the course of seven months, American opened four Flagship Lounges, and three Flagship First Dining facilities: 

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My Uber Had A Hello Kitty Theme!

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Usually I take the Metro home from work, but sometimes when I stay late I spring for an Uber. Earlier this week when I opened up the app and requested a ride after a long day, I didn’t know what I was getting myself into.

It was an UberPOOL, and it turned out to be a minivan with two other riders. When I got in, I immediately noticed that something was different.

Had I unwittingly boarded one of EVA Air’s specially themed planes? It was pretty much Ben’s dream Uber – all decked out in Hello Kitty swag!


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Air Belgium Is Operating Flights On Behalf Of Air France This Month

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Air Belgium is a startup airline that intends to operate a fleet of Airbus A340-300s for flights between Charleroi (outside of Brussels) and China (including the mainland and Hong Kong). The airline has business class, premium economy, and economy, and I can’t quite wrap my head around their business model:

— It seems they’re going after Chinese tour groups, though I’m not sure the margins there are great
— The A340 isn’t exactly the most fuel efficient plane, though on the plus side I assume they got the plane for cheap
— Recently both Cathay Pacific and Hainan started flying to Brussels, so they have a lot of competition
— Charleroi Airport isn’t convenient for most, and Air Belgium has no partnerships for connecting traffic

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Pittsburgh Is Paying HOW MUCH For Two China Eastern Flights?!?

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A couple of days ago I wrote about how China Eastern will start flying to Pittsburgh… for a very limited time. Essentially the airport is trying to court more international airlines, and somehow they’ve talked China Eastern into operating two charter flights to Pittsburgh in August (in the original story I said it was just one roundtrip flight, which I inferred based on the way the press release was written, though as it turns out they’re operating two roundtrip flights).

Essentially China Eastern will operate roundtrip flights from Shanghai to Pittsburgh on August 3 and August 11, in hopes of encouraging American tourists to visit China, and in hopes of encouraging Chinese tourists to visit Pittsburgh. Really they’re hoping that they can fill these two flights, an that this might encourage a Chinese airline to start flying to Pittsburgh.

While it’s true that in the past the success of some charter flights has eventually led to scheduled commercial service, this was typically the case when we’re talking about full-on seasonal charters. In this case we’re just talking about two flights that are almost being used as a marketing campaign, and it seems unlikely to me that this would lead to a Chinese airline adding flights to Pittsburgh.

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How To See Your British Airways Class Action Settlement (I’m Getting $837!)

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Yesterday I wrote about how a settlement has been reached with British Airways regarding a class action lawsuit over fuel surcharges.

This settlement includes all US Executive Club members who redeemed Avios for award tickets between November 9, 2006, and April 17, 2013, and who paid British Airways imposed fuel surcharges. If that describes you, and if the judge signs off on it, you’ll receive either Avios or cash.

Note that if you redeemed other points currencies for travel on British Airways during that period and paid surcharges, you wouldn’t be eligible for this. That’s because this lawsuit is in regards to the Executive Club program terms, and how they referred to these fees as “fuel surcharges” rather than “carrier imposed surcharges,” even though their existence had no correlation to the cost of fuel.

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Commercial Flights To Paine Field Delayed Until 2019

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Last May plans were announced for Paine Field-Snohomish County Airport to open a passenger terminal. For those of you not familiar, Paine Field is home to Boeing’s Everett Factory, and up until now hasn’t been used for commercial flights. However, airlines started to see the potential for the airport, given how many residents there are North of Seattle (more than a million people live in the North Sound). Offering service out of this airport could save many people over an hour on their airport commute. Furthermore, SeaTac Airport is nearing capacity.

In order to minimize the environmental impact and impact on the community, the airport is limiting itself to 24 daily arrivals and departures. Much to the airport’s surprise, this capacity was reached in no time, as Alaska, Southwest, and United, all announced plans to fly to Paine Field.

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Flying Blue Makes Negative Changes To Promo Awards

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Yesterday some major changes were made to the Air France-KLM Flying Blue program. As of yesterday Flying Blue is a revenue based frequent flyer program, meaning that you’re awarded miles based on how much your ticket costs, rather than based on the distance you fly.

Furthermore, Flying Blue is introducing variable award pricing. Previously Flying Blue redemption rates were zone based, while now the pricing works differently. In other words, a New York to Paris redemption now costs fewer points than a New York to Paris to Frankfurt redemption, even though they previously priced the same.

I’ve been curious to see the impact this has on Flying Blue’s popular Promo Awards. For those of you not familiar with Promo Awards, this is a monthly special that Flying Blue publishes where you can receive 20-50% off select award redemptions on Air France and KLM metal.

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Weekly Review: June 2, 2018

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I’ve been in the US for several weeks now, which is the most amount of time I’ve spent here in quite a while. That’s why I’m excited to be embarking on my next adventure today, as we head to Greece the (very) long way in Emirates first class. I’m so excited to be flying Emirates again, and especially to be flying with Ford, as Emirates first class is always more fun with company. It has also been a couple of years since I’ve flown Emirates’ A380 first class.

This has been a huge week when it comes to news, as I feel like there were so many airline and hotel announcements. Hyatt announced positive changes to their suite upgrades, Marriott backtracked on free breakfast at Courtyards, there was a great new Amex Offer for Air France and KLM purchases, China Eastern announced a flight to Pittsburgh, and more.

With that out of the way, here’s a recap of this week on the blog:

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