Archive for December, 2010

Miami, FL – Toronto, Canada | AA 1552 | 3A

December 17, 2010

So I was able to get the second to last seat in business class (late upgrade) and I got stuck with the bulkhead – the seat sucks and there is no space for your legs and your bag has to go up.  Avoid at all costs if possible – dare I say a emergency seat is better.  BUT there was lunch served…I’ll take it.

Had no issues checking in, on the plane, or getting my bag – all smooth considering I was going up North to the cold.  And IT WAS COLD – have not been exposed to these harsh conditions in a very long time.  Now I know why I like it so much in Miami.

Unlike Randy, it seem like I will only be a Platinum AA customer next week – a real shame…the complimentary upgrades are KEY.  So Randy, here is to you and your status…

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Dallas, TX – Miami, FL | AA 1646 | 3A

December 14, 2010

Well readers, this is a special blog entry.  Why?   Not because, we are an hour late leaving Dallas.   Not because, the Admirals Club at the C concourse provided amazing customer service after I left my winter coat in their lounge five days ago, and they kept it safe for me to pick-up.   But, because on this flight, I re-qualify for my Executive Platinum status for the 2011.   Yes, I have flown 100, 318 miles in 2010 once I touch down in Miami from this flight.    Anyone who has flown this many miles in one calendar year will attest that it is a lot of travel.  You really must have a love for travel, a love for your job, and/or a special love that will allow you to not be seen regularly because you have to away from home a great deal to reach this goal.

Now, the status factor is not the sought after perk.  The convenience factor is the real reward for flying this much.   No fees for checked bags, business class upgrades at no charge, priority check-in to get an overhead bin, and special stand-by rules are the real reasons for “going the extra mile” to make “status” each year.      i can share crazy stories of my fellow travel friends that have flown to Las Vegas for an hour to make status, or a certain someone that flew to Madrid for the weekend to make status.  Yes, the road warriors value these benefits THAT MUCH!  Yahoo!, I’m good until Feb 2012.

Oh!  This is also my first flight from Dallas to Miami that has Wi-FI on the aircraft.   This might actually be my oversight as I always choose 767 or 777 aircraft for my flights between these two cities.

I don’t know if I will be a r0ad warrior in 2011, so there may  be fewer blog entries, so I hope that they have been informative.

Safe travels (Buen Viaje)!

Randy

Former Road Warrior - Randy Moreau

Dallas, TX – Minneapolis, MN | AA 1175 | 3A

December 9, 2010
After two power hours in the Admirals Club at C20 in the Dallas Airport, I’m now seated on my flight to Minneapolis in a S80 aircraft with my Mac and Iphone batteries 100% charged for my flight.   During my visit to the Admiral’s club lounge, I had the chance to go to AA.com to see if my flight would have Wi-Fi.   The site said that there would be WI-Fi on the flight.    Arriving to the aircraft I looked for those happy little parenthesis around those letters “Wi-Fi” to the right hand side of the aircraft door.  To my joyful confirmation, they were there just like the website said that they would be.   The flight is about 20 minutes delayed on departure.  The captain announced that we will only be about five minutes late.   Yahoo!
Now, I’m going to “half” jump off subject for a second if I may.   I find that people often forget to say thank you and to acknowledge quality customer service.   I have about three of those American customer service acknowledgement slips left in my computer bag that will soon expire in February 2011.   I see no reason for them to be thrown away because I couldn’t find a few good employees to acknowledge.  I gave one on my last Miami to Dallas flight and I see an opportunity to give another one on this flight from Dallas to Minneapolis.   I am always surprised at the positive reaction that I get from cabin crew or gate agents when I give them the little slips.   I don’t know if they get free Mercedes cars or something, but they sure seem pleased.  Pay it forward my friends if you have the little slips or just say “Thank you for a nice flight” as you leave the aircraft.  It improves everyone’s day, which can be hard to do in the travel industry.    This post is being done from 32,000 feet  thank you to Go-Go In-flight service and the second imported beer that Felix will buy for me after I return from Minneapolis.  December 21..Felix at Grazianis in your building!  Until next Monday, have a nice weekend!   Best, Randy

Miami, FL – Dallas, TX | AA 395 | 4D

December 9, 2010
To avoid any traffic delays with my 10:45am departure, I drove from Pompano Beach to Miami at 6:30am to squeeze in a quick workout on Miami Beach before heading to the Miami airport.   Now, there are Fort Lauderdale flights to Dallas with connections to Minneapolis, but fares were notably lower from Miami.   The Fort Lauderdale departures do not have any 767 nor 777 aircraft on its routes.   After airfare prices and departure times, aircraft models are my key criteria for choosing a flight.   Who doesn’t love a foot rest and the choice of laying “nearly flat” on a flight.  Now, good old I-95 provided me with a 10 minute traffic delay within the first 10 minutes of my commute.  I couldn’t believe a delay so early in the morning!   Instead of being one of those South Florida drivers with a “happy” car horn, I decided to get to know my Iphone application for AA.
I had downloaded American Airlines mobile application several months ago, but had never opened it.    After typing in my Advantage number and password, the application took me immediately to my reservation that I had for today.   Very cool!!!  The screen had my reservation showing with my flight number, flight time, and gate information.   An impressive introduction to say the least.  The screen had a “check in” button, so I allowed my index finger to leave my coffee for a nano second to click the check in button.  I was “checked-in” immediately.  Now I don’t pretend to know how this differentiates me from someone else who had not left his or her coffee cup for that nano second.  Given my new curiosity for my mobile app alternatives, I used that index finger with my coffee addiction allowed me.   I was a bit disappointed to find that my mobile boarding pass option was not illuminated.   i guess that the Miami International team at TSA does not have the ability to check-in with a mobile device, or it could it be my connecting flight in Dallas.   The mobile application allowed me to review my frequent flyer balance, my progress towards my 2010 Executive Platinum re-qualificaiton (see next Monday’s posting for a celebratory post).  The application allowed me to have just about the same functionality that i could find on the internet website.    Now, I do not want to let out any top secret corporate data, but I just had dinner with a certain person who works at a major US credit card corporation.    This person was sharing a few highlights from a corporate PowerPoint deck that they had reviewed regarding the future of technology.   The key ‘take-away” (not to be confused with Canadian carry-out food) was that technology will migrate nearly 100% to mobile devices in approximately five years.   So you will now hear me say…..thank you to that 10 minute traffic delay that gifted me ten minutes to advance my mobile lifestyle.   It often hard to find 10 minutes to explore new technology, especially software that will be required me to be 100% mobile by 20015.    Ohhh! sorry Felix, I keep forgetting to recap my flight experience.   Well, the good news is that the flight left early, we are more than on-time to arrive to arrive to Dallas/Fort Worth.  There was a little turbulence leaving Miami due to the unusual winter rain system.   The crew was great on this flight.   I am going to use some of those little service acknowledgement slips that I have in my brief bag.  I’m an accountant, but brief cases are so 1990’s.   Upon landing I will check-in to the Admirals club for a longer than desired layover…..my trade-off for the 767 aircraft and lower airfare.    Don’t stop reading….Randy the travel writer has another post for you!     Happy December to All!   Randy