Austin?

Old Jan 8, 22, 1:56 pm
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Austin?

I am thinking of going somewhere week after next and I fancy Austin.
Economy is £1,900 return (!!!) but with my avios I can pay around £390 and I have enough Bonvoy points to stay in the city for either nothing (at the airport) or a few hundred dollars in the city.

Has anyone here been to Austin? how is it in January? Any tips?
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Old Jan 8, 22, 2:02 pm
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Can you get a similar deal to San Diego? Austin is best when student life is in full swing, perhaps April or October. It's one of the culturally interesting places in Texas (fairly short list mind). I would stay in central Austin, the airport area isn't that amazing. Or maybe first night at the airport and then downtown. That said AUS is only a few miles out of town, unlike say IAH.
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Old Jan 8, 22, 2:10 pm
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The Aloft downtown is around $360 plus 70,000 points.

I'd love to stay at the Proper hotel - as I stayed at the Santa Monica proper in November - but the whole point of this trip is a cheap break - not an expensive one!

I will check out San Diego but having just been in LA I fancied somewhere different but fairly nice weather - and don't fancy Florida.
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Old Jan 8, 22, 2:40 pm
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Rent a car and grab some barbeque in nearby Lockhart, which is about a half hour drive south of the airport. It has the holy trinity of Black’s, Kreuz Market, and Smitty’s. Of the three, Black’s is my favorite, but they are all excellent. Go for lunch because they sometimes run out of meats later in the day.

Austin will be warmer than London and sunnier too. If you have time and a car, you can and should also venture a little further south and visit San Antonio while you’re at it. If you are a shopper, there’s a large outlet mall in San Macros, in between Austin and San Antonio off of I-35.
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Last edited by SAT Lawyer; Jan 8, 22 at 3:04 pm
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Old Jan 8, 22, 2:40 pm
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Come to Palm Springs - the weather here is beautiful at the moment.

Couple of hours drive from SD and a range of Marriott properties from OK to pretty expensive.
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Old Jan 8, 22, 2:52 pm
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Austin is a cool city but the problem is a lot of tech companies have moved there due to tax purposes hence the higher prices. I have family that live there and they have said how much more expensive things are becoming in recent years. A great place to eat especially if you enjoy Texas BBQ (try Terry Blacks) and steaks plus you are about an hour and a half from San Antonio which is fantastic and would highly recommend visiting.
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Old Jan 8, 22, 3:34 pm
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I used to live in Austin - although quite a few years ago. As the saying goes... "It is a awesome city surrounded by Texas!" For weather, check the forecast - it can vary a lot! I seem to remember a New Year's day (or thereabouts) when I was cleaning one of my motorcycles with my brother and the temperature was almost 90F/32C! And there have been ice storms in January too, with high temperatures well below freezing! Austin is definitely well worth a visit, and has something for everyone. Whatever you like to do, Austin, or surrounding areas probably has it!

rb211.
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Old Jan 8, 22, 3:56 pm
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I second the fact that part of Texas in the winter can be cold - and very poorly equipped for the cold too. I sort of like Austin for a few days - it is a nice and compact little city, and I do agree that there are plenty of good bbq places around and decent culture, but I would have been a lot more enthusiastic from late February to April when the whole country around Austin is in bloom and really lovely. And yes, it is a bit of a bubble, but one might argue that it is not necessarily a bad thing!
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Old Jan 8, 22, 3:58 pm
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and looks like some BA competition with a new Virgin AUS route from LHRÖ
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Old Jan 8, 22, 4:25 pm
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In the olden days (pre-pandemic) I used to visit Austin at least once per year.

Definitely better hotels downtown, not at the airport. There are also some ok hotels (cheaper) and decent restaurants approx 20mins north of the city centre, in the Arboretum / Domain areas.
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Old Jan 8, 22, 4:38 pm
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Austin is very overrated. There are some nice aspects to it - and might be enjoyable for a couple of nights. Itís a medium sized city with the major university of the state, the state government, and a strip of (mostly) country music bars.

Heavy traffic, infrastructure hasnít kept up. Weather in Jan - echh. Today is 58F and cloudy.

San Antonio (45 min to the south) is actually the more culturally interesting city in Tex. Forget Houston and Dallas.

Coming all the way from UK (Iím assuming), Austin will likely underwhelm you.

Agree with the poster above regarding San Diego as a better choice. Check out Phoenix/Scottsdale as well. Much better weather and way more to do if you like the outdoors (flat or mountain hiking/golf/Sedona/Grand Canyon). Outstanding resorts also.
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Old Jan 8, 22, 4:59 pm
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Thanks for the advice. What I am actually thinking is use Austin as a base.
Rent a car and visit San Antonio, Dallas and Houston and spend one day in Austin.

Does that sound a good plan? it's 4 nights and 5 days so enough to explore.
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Old Jan 8, 22, 5:10 pm
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Originally Posted by SAT Lawyer View Post
Rent a car and grab some barbeque in nearby Lockhart, which is about a half hour drive south of the airport. It has the holy trinity of Blackís, Kreuz Market, and Smittyís. Of the three, Blackís is my favorite, but they are all excellent. Go for lunch because they sometimes run out of meats later in the day.

Austin will be warmer than London and sunnier too. If you have time and a car, you can and should also venture a little further south and visit San Antonio while youíre at it. If you are a shopper, thereís a large outlet mall in San Macros, in between Austin and San Antonio off of I-35.
all very good points. And I will disagree with a previous poster That said Austin is better when students are there. Austin is fun anytime and unless you are 22 you donít need the students.
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Old Jan 8, 22, 5:31 pm
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When I lived in Austin we had snow in mid November, not a lot, but definitely snow. So, yes it can be on the colder side in the winter. Dallas and Houston are not particularly exciting or attractive cities to visit, and the drive over there and between them is flat, not scenic and pretty boring. Austin is a great city, worthy of about 3 nights, after that you will have seen everything there is to do at that time of year. What about flying into the Phoenix area? Head up to the Grand Canyon and Utah NPs, they can be very scenic this time of year and less busy than normal, can be a little cold and some snow but beautiful because of it.
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Old Jan 8, 22, 6:02 pm
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Thanks for all the tips - I have booked into Austin.

Wierdly BA auto allocated my seats - 30F which is the aisle middle seat and 30D on the other side coming back.
I didn't select the seat - and the entire row which is the exit front aisle at the start of WT on the 787-9 is empty

Is that normal? I have never seen an auto allocated seat on booking before check in?

Also where would be the best place to sit in WT as a Gold on the 789?
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