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How do you fly to luxury properties?

How do you fly to luxury properties?

Old Dec 8, 11, 11:24 am
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How do you fly to luxury properties?

Returning today from Amanjena, I was struck by the curiosity of how we all fly to/from luxury properties. Is the trend paid F? Paid C? Since this is FT, leveraging instruments for upgrades from Y? Does anyone fly private?

Obviously feel free to share only if you are comfortable. FWIW, I tend to combine business and pleasure travel. I'm fortunate in that I can generally book paid C for work, and then tack on my own flights for the pleasure portion, generally intra-Asia or intra-Europe at that point.

I've found award bookings virtually useless as my work schedule dictates that I can generally only plan holidays about 6-8 weeks out. Thus F awards, and even C are generally off the table, although I've been lucky with F/C availability in some cases where my holiday dates were more flexible.

These days, especially if trekking to an Aman or other lux property, I avoid Y like the plague. Only taking it when C/F seats are ridiculously priced (more readily an issue in more unique type destinations) and the journey is less than 4 hours. I'm generally in paid C and end up in C or in F when I can leverage a *A upgrade through a system wide certificate or miles.

Since I'm limited to *A in terms of elite status and benefits, I'm somewhat restricted in a few venues (read: Tahiti), and thus will have to get creative when I ultimately end up there with what will likely amount to a pricey C ticket.

This morning in Marrakech, I saw the NetJets counter in the check-in area. I also noticed on takeoff a plethora of private jets, naturally, at this airport. Some day... certainly looking forward to that chance.

How about you?
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Old Dec 8, 11, 11:51 am
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http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/luxur...el-values.html

would love to see expansion of ~$1K/hr private market.

number of tickets is also a factor in this question.

Last edited by Kagehitokiri; Dec 12, 11 at 5:30 am
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Old Dec 8, 11, 12:29 pm
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If I have to make a choice, I will fly tourist class rather than staying in less luxurious hotels!

Within Europe we only fly economy. For intercontinental flights, we sometimes fly economy, it happens occasionally that we buy business class when there is a good price, but mostly we fly business class on award tickets (my husband has HON status and lots of airmiles to spend).

I have flown first only once (Lufthansa) and found this very disappointing and would never dream about paying for a similar experience again.
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Old Dec 8, 11, 12:39 pm
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Originally Posted by Musken View Post
I have flown first only once (Lufthansa) and found this very disappointing and would never dream about paying for a similar experience again.
sometimes the cost difference is pretty small, even paid >
http://boardingarea.com/blogs/onemil...a-first-class/ LH F on sale for $2400
love how often those things happen after you have already done something
i paid $1500x2 for UA Y to CH and annual Y+ in july

LH F only recently started competing with top seats, and became first to have fixed permanent bed

Last edited by Kagehitokiri; May 7, 14 at 7:48 pm
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Old Dec 8, 11, 12:48 pm
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Originally Posted by Musken View Post
If I have to make a choice, I will fly tourist class rather than staying in less luxurious hotels!
I agree with this, but I'd rather save up and splurge on both.

Originally Posted by Musken View Post
Within Europe we only fly economy.
Good point, intra Europe C on LH is basically a joke. BA, however, I've found pretty nice.

Originally Posted by Musken View Post
I have flown first only once (Lufthansa) and found this very disappointing and would never dream about paying for a similar experience again.
Very sorry to hear this. I've flown UA, NH, LH F in the past year and found them to be pretty fantastic compared to the C product. The new UA F hard product is pretty fantastic, although so is their C. Soft product remains a problem IMHO.

NH F is truly fantastic. Caviar and Krug champagne, lobster, IMHO generally an almost empty cabin and Bose noise canceling headphones. Soft product I thoroughly enjoy, but I spend a lot of time in Japan so I'm used to that style of service (some feel it is somewhat cold, which I disagree with).

Anyways, it's not even just the flying experience. The pre departure lounges, especially the international F lounges, are quite nice. Pre boarding, easier allowances for carry ons, I think the overall experience is quite worth it - although I don't (ever) pay full fare F. Notice my F flights are all on *A partners, achieved with paid C and upgrade instruments in pretty much every case.
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Old Dec 8, 11, 1:41 pm
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im starting to think paid VIP/CIP can be better value than paid J sometimes

not easy to find how to book at most airports

would be convenient if more luxury hotels knew the local arrangements
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Old Dec 8, 11, 2:41 pm
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Originally Posted by Musken View Post
If I have to make a choice, I will fly tourist class rather than staying in less luxurious hotels!
Totally agree with this!

But as *A frequent fliers, Mr. Ericka and I are blessed to fly on C and F awards just about anywhere except (as ainternational points out) Tahiti.

We sometimes fly private on a relative's dime, but not nearly as often as we rely on our miles, and that is only within the US.
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Old Dec 8, 11, 3:00 pm
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Originally Posted by ainternational View Post
I agree with this, but I'd rather save up and splurge on both.
I will not fly paid business if I have to save for it. Agree that both a nice flight and a luxury hotel is the best combination, but only if I can afford it without having to make any sacrifises, I would buy the nice flight. For lux hotels, I would do anything. ;-)

Originally Posted by ainternational View Post
Very sorry to hear this. I've flown UA, NH, LH F in the past year and found them to be pretty fantastic compared to the C product. The new UA F hard product is pretty fantastic, although so is their C. Soft product remains a problem IMHO.

NH F is truly fantastic. Caviar and Krug champagne, lobster, IMHO generally an almost empty cabin and Bose noise canceling headphones. Soft product I thoroughly enjoy, but I spend a lot of time in Japan so I'm used to that style of service (some feel it is somewhat cold, which I disagree with).

Anyways, it's not even just the flying experience. The pre departure lounges, especially the international F lounges, are quite nice. Pre boarding, easier allowances for carry ons, I think the overall experience is quite worth it - although I don't (ever) pay full fare F. Notice my F flights are all on *A partners, achieved with paid C and upgrade instruments in pretty much every case.
Well, my only first class experience was Singapore to München. It was already late at night and on top of this, the flight was delayed. I was half asleep and forced myself to stay awake to enjoy the caviar and champagne. Then I fell asleep 20 cm away from an unkown man next to me. There was a separating "wall" to pull down between us, but only very high up on the chair where I was not laying (I am not particularly tall). When turning around I would touch him if I was not very careful. For breakfast I got a freshly cooked breakfast which was good, but not better than any such breakfast in a hotel) and there was a rose on the tray (what did I need that for)?? The pyjamas and cover/pillow for sleeping was better than in business class and someone unpacked it for me (again over the top for me). The chair could recline fully, but I did not think that this gave me any better sleeping quality than business, really. Maybe with the private cabins that are now offered for some first class flights I would feel differently, or maybe one can better enjoy first class during a day flight. I guess I will not find out.

Totally agree with you about first class lounges, though, but since my husband has a HON status, we have been able to enjoy them several times also when flying other classes.

Last edited by Musken; Dec 9, 11 at 1:40 am
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Old Dec 8, 11, 4:03 pm
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My broom usually does the trick of getting me to hard-to-arrive at locations...

I just couldn't resist.
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Old Dec 8, 11, 11:49 pm
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F and C/J. Book in advance on restricted fares if trying to save.....best not to fly US carriers if paying. They are the worst. I find the best are many Asian - SQ, Cathay, and in Europe BA across the pond.
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Old Dec 9, 11, 1:24 am
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With Y+ products improving constantly, it now makes sense to pay for Y+ and then upgrade in J if possible. If not, the Y+ product is way better, on most airlines, than their Y product.

Otherwise, I redeem my miles for F/C travel internationally. Within North America, I tend to purchase F/J tickets as they are cheap enough.
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Old Dec 9, 11, 10:18 am
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Originally Posted by Larkin View Post
F and C/J. Book in advance on restricted fares if trying to save.....best not to fly US carriers if paying. They are the worst. I find the best are many Asian - SQ, Cathay, and in Europe BA across the pond.
Completely agree. Unfortunately I need to generally book UA due to a corporate contract for TATL/TPAC. But with the new JV with NH and the existing one with LH, the opportunities to leverage them over UA are becoming a reality for many UA corporate customers.

I wish SQ would join the UA JV...
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Old Dec 9, 11, 10:25 am
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Originally Posted by Kagehitokiri View Post
im starting to think paid VIP/CIP can be better value than paid J sometimes

not easy to find how to book at most airports

would be convenient if more luxury hotels knew the local arrangements
Good point, that would be fantastic. Unfortunately with origins being all over the place, I'm not sure the resorts themselves would be very helpful - although in rare cases (Amanpulo who charters their own flights from Manila to the island), clearly they are well in the loop and taking care of transfers for their guests. In that particular case, I'm not even sure how else one gets to that island.

Anyways, perhaps we need another thread on flying private and short term / hourly / per segment scheduling & fares with tips and tricks. I've visited a few websites and gotten some quotes before, but always found the cost to be significantly more than paid F, at least ex-SFO to destinations like Mexico, LAS, SAN, etc. Flying private TPAC or TATL I think would likely be extremely costly to arrange through one of these services. Probably a better deal to utilize NetJets and the others for longer trips like that. Of course, that takes a significant investment.

Unfortunately that won't jive on my expense report any time soon for corporate travel, let alone being affordable for a holiday! Some day..
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Old Dec 9, 11, 11:01 am
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main issue is immigration/customs at arrival airport, near hotel
re origin (always security if not also checkin and immigration/customs) there are still local hotels

only other way to get to amanpulo and similar places is private that fits runway, or by water to islands, which would include floatplane in addition to yachts, with tender if no marina

from a logistics perspective, private reduces travel time to/from/within commercial airports
VIP/CIP can help with the within

i regret not flying US helicopter, now that i see they shut down all the way back in 2009
scheduled helicopter services are another thing that would be great to see expand

Last edited by Kagehitokiri; Dec 9, 11 at 11:44 am
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Old Dec 9, 11, 11:02 am
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Originally Posted by Kagehitokiri View Post
origin doesnt matter, just arrival airport
How do you figure that if you're looking for travel from A to B by private jet or charter?
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