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American Airlines

Award Booking Tips overheard at FT4RL

So I made a rookie mistake presenting at FT4RL - too many slides! I had to rush through a few of my points on booking awards so I thought I'd share some of them here, along with a few other tips shared by the group. Nothing earth shattering here, but some good tips nonetheless. There is coach award space to Europe still available this summer I didn't do an exhaustive search, but as far as I could tell there is quite a bit of award space available to Europe this summer. I searched the three main legacy carriers for four people to/from various US cities to various European cities and there was quite a bit of coach availability. My main point here is this: if you want to travel to [...]

Daddy and Daughter in D.C. – Flights and a Fun Friday

My wife and I decided to split the team and take two separate trips this past weekend. While she took our four month old son down to Charlotte to visit her sister (his first flight!), I took M to visit some friends in D.C. Both trips were a resounding success, but I thought I'd share about the experience of taking a toddler on a vacation alone. M is turning 3 in January, for reference. The Preamble Packing for a toddler is quite a bit easier than packing for an infant. Or maybe I just stress out less about it. For starters, Jess had the brilliant idea of putting each of M's outfits into big ziplock bags so I wouldn't get confused. Of course, I still managed to get super confused [...]

Parenthood is destroying all my “principles”

M and I are gearing up for a father-daughter bonding trip (while Jess takes H as we split the team). I've noticed that once again, as a dad, some long held principles of mine are falling apart. I wrote awhile back about how I refused to pay for parking in Portland but how that was stupid (after which the comments proceeded to call me stupid, thanks all!). This week I broke another principle of mine - I paid for seats on an AA flight. Yuck. Basically, our flight was pretty full and there were no seats together available that were free. Now, I figured there was a 95% chance that they would be able to put us together at the gate/ticket counter, and an even better chance that some kind [...]

Baggage Charges for Infants and Toddlers – A Guide

Earlier today while Matt was gearing up for a trip with his family he wrote the following tweet: https://twitter.com/Saverocity/status/620241966698262528 Nobody seemed to reply to him (or I don't know how to use my Twitter properly, which is probable) and he got my curious, so I decided to look up baggage fees for infants and children. When we were only dealing with one infant we managed to still travel light - two roller carry ons plus caddy/carseat combination were enough. It was a bit cumbersome at the airport but doable. When our infant became a toddler, we ended up getting a car seat bag - in all our travels we were able to check the car seat bag for free (and stuff it with diapers and other stuff). At that point [...]

AA bonus transfer from SPG

I don't normally post these "deals" anymore but I wanted to reflect on something related. However I also wanted to avoid a clickbait-y title so I didn't know what else to put as the title. Anyway since the title has the "deal" in it let me get that out of the way: 30k AA miles for a 20k SPG transfer now until 8/7. Useful if you're in a bind and better than the normal 20 => 25 rate but SPG points can be very valuable (and tough to earn especially for people who don't MS regularly) so don't go overboard. What I really wanted to discuss was whether this transfer bonus might be warning signs of the potential AA devaluation. I say potential because I think it's important for us to [...]

Some Simple AA Credit Card Mistakes You Probably Know to Avoid

Update: Literally 5 minutes after I posted this, I got an e-mail from AAdvantage saying programs would start combine on March 28 (though no real details). Most are savvy enough to have avoided these mistakes, but for relative newcomers here are a few reminders. Currently, you can get 100,000 AAdvantage miles pretty quickly with two credit card sign ups: the Barclays US Air card and the Citi AA Platinum card. The theory is simple - sign up for the Barclays US Air card and get 50,000 US Air miles after first purchase ($89 annual fee not waived). Sign up for the Citi AA Platinum card and get 50,000 bonus miles after spending $3000 in three months. Once the programs merge (imminently!), you'll have 103,000 AA miles, 7000 short of flying [...]

A Silly Post about my Airline Pajama Collection

My wife has been reading a new book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. Normally this wouldn't be relevant to this blog, except this book combined with being snowed in have created a state where she has been passionately cleaning out our closets for the last week. I now have three garbage bags full of clothes to donate/trash - and much to my chagrin there are a few sets of pajamas in there. I am a person who has never bought a real set of pajamas in my life, but somehow I am also semi-obsessed with airline pajamas. Maybe it's that they're "free" (yeah right). Anyway, here are my impressions of the various pajama sets I have, listed in order of accrual. Oh, and did you know I'm giving away [...]