Articles by thetravelingmillennial

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Etihad A330-300 Review (Economy)

Etihad A330-300 at AMS. I recently traveled to Abu Dhabi after redeeming miles (90,000 miles and $46) for first class on Etihad’s A380 (the plane with the shower and onboard bar!).  I decided to fly the AUH-JFK route which was about an hour longer than flying in the other direction (jet stream folks).  I’ll review each segment of my trip: American Airlines CRJ-200 Review (Economy):  ‘Twas the Worst of Times American Airlines 757-200 Review (Economy):  ‘Twas Still the Worst of Times How to Layover in Amsterdam:  4 Hours Etihad A330-300 Review (Economy) Hilton Abu Dhabi Review (Executive Floor) Abu Dhabi…


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Amsterdam: 4-Hour Layover

These adorable, smushed-together buildings are all over the city. I recently traveled to Abu Dhabi after redeeming miles (90,000 miles and $46) for first class on Etihad’s A380 (the plane with the shower and onboard bar!).  I decided to fly the AUH-JFK route which was about an hour longer than flying in the other direction (jet stream folks).  I’ll review each segment of my trip: American Airlines CRJ-200 Review (Economy):  ‘Twas the Worst of Times American Airlines 757-200 Review (Economy):  ‘Twas Still the Worst of Times How to Layover in Amsterdam:  4 Hours Etihad A330-300 Review (Economy) Hilton Abu Dhabi…


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American Airlines 757-200 Review (Economy) – ‘Twas Still the Worst of Times

I recently traveled to Abu Dhabi after redeeming miles (90,000 miles and $46) for first class on Etihad’s A380 (the plane with the shower and onboard bar!).  I decided to fly the AUH-JFK route which was about an hour longer than flying in the other direction (jet stream folks).  I’ll review each segment of my trip: American Airlines CRJ-200 Review (Economy):  ‘Twas the Worst of Times American Airlines 757-200 Review (Economy):  ‘Twas Still the Worst of Times How to Layover in Amsterdam:  4 Hours Etihad A330-300 Review (Economy) Hilton Abu Dhabi Review (Executive Floor) Abu Dhabi Review Etihad First Class…


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American Airlines CRJ-200 Review (Economy) – ‘Twas the Worst of Times

I recently traveled to Abu Dhabi after redeeming miles (90,000 miles and $46) for first class on Etihad’s A380 (the plane with the shower and onboard bar!).  I decided to fly the AUH-JFK route which was about an hour longer than flying in the other direction (jet stream folks).  I’ll post my review of each segment accordingly–this post is the first review of my trip. American Airlines CRJ-200 Review (Economy):  ‘Twas the Worst of Times American Airlines 757-200 Review (Economy):  ‘Twas Still the Worst of Times How to Layover in Amsterdam:  4 Hours Etihad A330-300 Review (Economy) Hilton Abu Dhabi…


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Verizon Smart Rewards: How Much Are My 250,000 Points Worth? (Part 2)

I previously analyzed how much my 150,000 Verizon Smart Rewards (points) were worth (Part 1) (which you should read before this post) and they’ve grown in the meantime to a quarter million.  I concluded that by buying gift cards for about a 10% discount or by booking hotels through the Verizon Smart Rewards portal, you could receive about one cent per point as your best redemption value for Verizon “Smart” Rewards.  Since then, I’ve found a few ways to exceed the one cent per point value, but these methods still require you to spend some of your own cash to…


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Etihad A380-800 First Class–Sneak Peek

I just returned from a ~14 hour flight in first class on Etihad’s A380-800!  What an incredible experience, I cannot imagine a better way to fly.  First class on this plane is special because each seat is a “suite,” meaning you get an 8-foot couch, vanity, large tv, large chair, 3 windows, and doors that fully close.  Did I mention there is a shower and bar?  Plus, an on-board chef prepares each plate as it is ordered a la carte by first class fliers. Normally, a one-way ticket from AUH-JFK (Abu Dhabi to New York) in first class would cost ~$8,000 but…


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Election Fatigue? Fares to 3 European Cities for Under $500

Fares frequently change so this post will likely be outdated by 11/11/16 We’re entering an era where we’ve seen unprecedented and consistently-offered low fares on international flights.  With a little planning, you can typically fly to Europe for under $600, Asia for under $700, and South America for under $600.  While you can typically find these fares on budget carriers (WOW, Norwegian, etc.), they’re also available on the legacy carriers (Delta, United, and American) which offer frequent flier miles and free beverages (on international flights).  I used Google Flights to find the flights listed below.  I recommend that you use…


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Review of American’s 777-200 (Business Class)

American Airlines 777-200 at Sunrise I previously wrote about my trip to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil that was amazing!  The beach was huge, the cable cars up to Sugarloaf Mountain were intense, and the airplane landings were epic.  Overall it was a great trip considering American Airlines was offering $550 round-trip flights, likely as a result of the Zika virus (FYI I did not even see any mosquitoes during my trip). Another highlight of the trip was my flight to Brazil which was upgraded to business class at the gate.  A teenager was also upgraded at the gate–best day ever.  You can…


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United’s Award Flight Changes: Worse Than Expected for 4 Reasons

Sunrise in Iceland I previously wrote about changes that United planned to make to its award flight booking policy, but the actual changes are even worse than anticipated.  Just to summarize, United planned to eliminate its free stopover on one-way flights–replacing it with a stopover on round-trip flights in either the origin or destination zone–but United ended up eliminating so much more.  These additional devaluations may not be readily apparent, but they’re nonetheless significant: 1. Hard to Book the Excursionist Perk There is no easy way to book the Excursionist Perk, you must book a multi-city award ticket that meets all…


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SPG and Marriott Merger Complete: 3 Things You Need to Do

My favorite hotel breakfast so far!  mmmmm mango juice Big news in the hotel industry happened today:  the Marriott and SPG merger completed following Chinese regulatory approval.  The merger is significant because of the uncertainty it brings for folks who are loyal to either SPG or SPG Starpoints.  Starpoints are often viewed as one of the most valuable point currencies because you can transfer them to a large number of airline programs for favorable rates (1:1 with a 5,000 bonus for transferring 20,000).  Marriott is valuable because it offers Hotel + Air Package where you can redeem, for example, 200,000 Marriott points…