Cathay Pacific’s First Class is one of the most desirable products out there today, and It’s also one of the hardest to book with miles, since award availability for these seats typically opens up just a week or two prior to departure. So up to this point, my only experience with Cathay Pacific First Class had been over two years ago. Luckily, this trip had come together last-minute anyways, and I ultimately had my pick of three out of the four daily flights that Cathay Pacific operates between Hong Kong and New York.
After landing, the other passengers either continued onward to their final destinations or headed toward immigration to enter Hong Kong. I was doing neither, since I was basically going to spend the next nine hours hanging out in the airport lounge, only to return to where I had just come form. While that may seem incredibly boring to some, I couldn’t have been more excited.
My review of Singapore Airlines’ new First Class seat on a recent flight from San Francisco to Hong Kong.
“How was your flight?” It’s a pretty standard question that you get asked after arriving at your destination. But in this case, I wasn’t really sure how to answer it. Forthis particular trip from San Francisco to New York, I decided to take the scenic route. Well that’s probably a huge understatement, since I literally flew halfway across the world on my 40-hour journey.
By late morning we were already on the road for the 3-hour road trip from Zurich to Milan. Apparently we had arrived along with the first snowstorm of the season, and driving along the lakes and snow-capped mountains was simply intoxicating. Between the natural landscape and the fun we had observing the differences in architecture of the buildings as we headed south into Italy, we had enough entertainment to make the time fly by.
With under 24 total hours in Zurich spread across two separate visits, we had our work cut out for us if we were going to take full advantage of being in the land of cheese. In fact, I was traveling with two people who’s favorite food is cheese, and they couldn’t stop drooling at the prospect of stuffing their faces with some of Switzerland’s finest.
Even though we’d be flying in and out of Zurich, we actually weren’t planning to spend much time there. So really we just needed an economical place to crash the night that we arrived, and the night prior to our return, and for both of those nights we settled on the Zurich Marriott.
Between the negative reviews of British Airways’ Business Class product on Flyertalk and the fact that they made me pay to select seats in advance, I didn’t have high expectations for my flights to Zurich. The final verdict after my round-trip? I really, really liked my flights, and it was all because of the seat, which was so comfortable that I was able to sleep like a baby for 7-8 hours each way. That simply does not happen for a light-sleeping insomniac like myself.
Thanksgiving is my favorite time of the year to travel for a couple reasons. Firstly, while other holidays rotate around, there’s no guessing which days you’ll have off for Thanksgiving – it’s a 4-day weekend every single year. Secondly, while domestic travel during Thanksgiving week can be a nightmare, it’s the perfect time to travel internationally. As an added bonus, you can essentially bank on the fact that there will be a premium cabin sales each year which means that you can fly in style, most often to Europe, for a fraction of the normal price.
The points & miles hobby is at the cross roads of travel loyalty programs and credit card rewards. Some travel hacking purists only believe in airline and hotel currencies. As for me, this game is about saving money in whichever way possible. Maximizing the value of a purchase sometimes involves receiving rewards in different shapes and forms. Cashback and statement credits, anyone? If you don’t look at your options holistically, you may be missing out!