And that is a wrap

24 hours

2 Boeing 737s

1 Embraer E175

1 Bombardier CRJ900

5500 miles

4 Delta SkyClubs

14000 Virgin Atlantic Flying Club miles

12 tier points

1 thing on my mind…. Sleeping in my own bed

Thanks for playing along folks

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DL1729 DTW-SFO 02A

  I have a feeling this button will be well worn by the end of the flight. 
Thanks Delta. You’ve made mileage running quite fun. 

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DL3629 DFW-DTW 03A

Canadian Barbie is taking us almost home to the frozen tundra that is Detroit. 

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Dead dinosaurs don’t come much cheaper

  

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Mattress running for precious metals

Here is a hotel that I won’t be staying in :

  
Here is a pair of room keys I will not be using :

 However I will be enjoying the two stay credits that I’ll get for not actually staying here.  I’m a little sad because the US Dragonball Z championships was taking place at this hotel. Nerds everywhere!

 

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Escape from DFW

This trip had a second purpose other than the gratuitous acquisition of miles and that was to devour delicious barbecue in the great state of Texas. 

Yelp determined that the interestingly titled Meat U Anywhere was the best rated within an acceptable distance so here we are stuffing our faces full of hot meat. 

Inexplicably after I returned from the bathroom there were two ice cold Coors Lights on our table. That was a nice touch for a BYOB place. 

   
   

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Faster than a speeding bullet

Have you ever wondered what kind of speeds you actually get from GoGo in-flight WiFi?  Me too.

delta-speedtest

As with all speed tests, I’d take this with a pinch of salt – Hotels, ISPs, and public WiFi providers are all known to prioritise traffic to speedtest sites in order to assure customers that their internet service provision couldn’t possibly be the cause of Youtube buffering every two seconds.

That said, I’m rather looking forward to faster WiFi on planes.  VX are already (slowly) rolling out faster speeds onto their new A320s with ViaSat’s in-flight WiFi, on which they actively promote the use of larger-bandwidth services such as Netflix and Spotify – I can’t see that this will be coming to a DL Barbie Jet any time soon, but it’d certainly make mileage runs easier.

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Sleeping at Airports

It occurred to me, as I lay attempting to find a comfortable position on Delta’s Skyclub not-at-all-comfortable chair so that I may catch even a few precious moments of sleep, that I’ve spent far too much of my travelling life doing this.

Ever since Tony introduced me to the finer things in air travel, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed everything that comes with chasing and eventually using elite flyer status, including but not limited to faster security clearance, expedited boarding, and lounge access.  I have turned into a complete status junkie and I love it.  But apart from more comfortable seats in first class aircraft cabins, I can’t help but notice that sleep is something that even elite flyers can’t get catered for, outside of a hotel room for a night.

In March this year I booked a slightly impulsive trip to meet my brothers in the Philippines, flying Business Class on Air China (the occasional  hilarity of which I’ll save for another post).  I had a layover at MNL for 6 hours and decided this wasn’t worth a hotel room since the chain hotels you could actually guarantee leaving with a good night’s sleep and your dignity intact close to the airport ran at a couple of hundred dollars a night, and besides – I’d read about something that sounded truly fantastic – day rooms.

The idea was supposed to be that you could rent a room in the airport, with little more than a bed, a toilet, a shower, and a power outlet or two – all for the princely sum of around $18.  This sounded perfect –  if you’ve got a layover of a few hours you don’t really need anything more than a comfy bed and a shower, and the difference that these two would’ve made to that part of my trip would’ve been indescribable.

In reality, I couldn’t find a single person that knew what on earth I was talking about, despite finding increasingly inventive ways to describe these elusive day rooms.  To this day I am convinced that against the advice of the NAIA website, they don’t actually exist.  I’ve also found that as far as I can see they don’t exist here in the US either.  Why?

Lounges are an incredibly worthwhile addition to the first-class air travel  experience, and even the worst lounge – say, for example, the Air China Business Class Lounge at MNL (which was like stepping 30 years back in time) – beats waiting at the gate for your plane.  Even if the food is of decidedly average quality (Delta Skyclubs, I’m looking at you), you can get alcoholic drinks, free WiFi, and a moderately comfortable seat.

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Tony tries out Delta Skyclub’s Uncomfortabeds(TM)

But why no beds, especially airside?  During our three-hour layover there isn’t time to head to an airport hotel, especially when you have to come back through security.  I understand real estate at airports is at a relative premium but this morning, in the Delta Skyclub at MSP, I’d have happily paid a fee to rent a room with a bed in it for a few hours.

And when I made an excellent decision to take advantage of remarkably cheap first class returns to LAS on DL for a Tier Point run, but coupled it with a terrible decision to forgo a hotel room for the night – hey, it’s the city that never sleeps, right?! – I’d have paid a lot of cash for a bed at the airport for a few hours, if only to avoid the sampled shouts of “Wheel…..of……FORTUNE!!!!” from the various machines, which is enough to drive anyone crazy.

Day rooms at US airports – workable or a pipe dream?  I’m hoping the former.

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DL5697 MSP-DFW 02A

Airline rules say that morning drinking is perfectly acceptable.  I do think there’s a rule that says you shouldn’t be allowed to fly this far in a Barbie Jet. 

We slept like babies then dined like kings in the MSP Delta SkyClub (this may be a lie) and now it is time for three hours of luxury air travel aboard this Delta Connect Embraer E175. 

 

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Minneapolis nice. 

Remind me again why I’m doing this? The first seats on DLs 739s are not comfortable but I closed my eyes before take off and woke up to find the fasten seatbelt signs already illuminated. Other than that there’s nothing even remotely interesting about this airport. 

  

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