Posts Tagged ‘Upgrade’

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… 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

Miami, FL – Bogota, Colombia | AA 913 | 3A

November 30, 2010

Nothing like making a traditional holiday as untraditional as possible.   This trip is a rescheduled trip from August 2010 that I had planned to take to Bogota to see friends and co-workers.   I learned a few new “airline rules” on this rebooking for my Thanksgiving day flight.   If you have ever used a co-pay with miles to upgrade, you might find it helpful to know the rules around the upgrade.   When I cancelled the original travel (August 2010), American told me that I had a few options regarding my $150 co-pay and 15,000 miles that I used to upgrade the first portion of my flight.   I could leave the “upgrade” unused for up to one year from the original date of my flight and then rebook the flight with an upgrade for no additional fees.   The upgrade was a “free standing purchase” that can be moved to another reservations within the same upgrade region.  This means that I could rebook to Colombia (or any other destination in the same upgrade category, like Venezuela) and use the upgrade on one of those flight segments.   The other option is to forgo the $150 and have the miles added back to my account.  Knowing that I would get to Colombia, I decided to leave this on account for a future booking.

My Thanksgiving morning flight was on-time with little traffic and congestion at the Miami International Airport.   A few things have changed in that the “Flagship Lounge” and the E Concourse Admirals Club which were both closed.   In late 2011, the new Flagship Lounge will open in Concourse E.    This was a disappointment in that my flight left from gate E8.   I figured this to not be an issue since I didn’t have a long wait and I can have endless mimosas on the plane.  Well, not so fast…they were out of champagne after one mimosa.    How can this be on a 767 with over 20 business class seats?   I guess that a lot of people were giving “Thanks” with champagne or American understocked the galley.   White wine had to play substitute but it wasn’t the same.

Back to the topic at hand.   The flight left on time, arrived on time, and it was a remarkably smooth flight given the rain in the region.   After a quick immigration process, it was time for yoga and then dinner in beautiful Bogota.

Cheers  Randy

Exec Plat Traveler - Randy Moreau