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Mileage Runners: Who Are They--And Are They Crazy??

Mileage Runners: Who Are They--And Are They Crazy??

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Old Jun 4, 08, 8:51 pm
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Mileage Runners: Who Are They--And Are They Crazy??

Fascinating article/interview:
http://rickseaney.com/2008/06/03/mil...re-they-crazy/


Excerpt:
Karen: A trip like this does seem nuts to an infrequent traveler, and even to someone who does it regularly for work, I suppose. For me, it’s a combination of things. The upgrades I get from being a 1K with United are important to me. The way I’m treated as a 1K is vastly better than the way most folks are treated, and that’s a great gift. The other thing to keep in mind is that for some strange reason, I LOVE this. I love the excitement of getting on a plane, I love bringing things to keep me occupied on the plane, I love being on the plane, I love the nature of the airport and commerce taking place, I love the whole process….and everybody is a little crazy about their hobbies, and this is my hobby.

The above is EXACTLY why I love MRs! Couldn't have said it better myself! I truly love the excitement of travel, the on-board service, the bustle of the airport, keeping myself entertained, enjoying premium lounges, being treated as one of the airline's very best customers, etc. It's definitely my #1 hobby.

In fact, if I go more than a few weeks without traveling, I start to go through withdrawal. Seriously.


My family thinks I'm crazy, and I've lost my significant other to this hobby. But I wouldn't dream of stopping!
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Old Jun 4, 08, 8:59 pm
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Originally Posted by ESpen36 View Post
In fact, if I go more than a few weeks without traveling, I start to go through withdrawal. Seriously.
Same here, though I do see MRs as very much a means to an end. Spending a day doing a CLD-SMF 6-segemnt run is not that exciting though, but it does give me a day of peace and quiet and an opportuinity to read a couple of books...

I could get quite excited about a weekend TATL MR in C/J/F though....
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Old Jun 4, 08, 9:05 pm
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Originally Posted by dgwright99 View Post
Same here, though I do see MRs as very much a means to an end. Spending a day doing a CLD-SMF 6-segemnt run is not that exciting though, but it does give me a day of peace and quiet and an opportuinity to read a couple of books...

I could get quite excited about a weekend TATL MR in C/J/F though....

Very true for me too. I'd much rather do a weekend TATL up front, instead of a dozen domestic short-hauls. I LOVE international premium class service on AA and get excited about it! (Bring on the ice cream sundaes in the sky!)

I'm not so much a fan of domestic short-haul on cramped regional jets. I view these flights as necessary evils.


Part of the issue for me is that the more connections you make, and the more flights you take, the greater the possibility of things getting screwed up by WX, MX, ATC, or other problems. So, I'd rather take two super-long-haul flights instead of a half dozen short-hauls. It just seems to make more sense in today's world of constant Irregular Operations--delays, cancelations, etc.


After all, in today's world, all it takes is a tiny hiccup somewhere--a thunderstorm at DFW, snow at DEN, a light breeze at ORD/LGA--and the whole day's schedule is GONE. And the delays ripple nationwide!
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Old Jun 5, 08, 8:59 am
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I love to be a MR. I am flying somewhere every 30-45 days. Usually long haul flights, even if it is just for a weekend, to go to a party, or have dinner at my favorite place in Paris.

Karen hit the nail on the head in that interview, and like Karen and ESpen 36, I love to travel. I come out of pocket for it, as it is all personal, but I am fortunate enough to have a job and resources that allow me to do so. Flying is so exciting. It is my hobby, and I've been at it for 17 years now, since I was 18 and took my first plane to Boot Camp. Like some people like to take trips by car, I like to take trips by plane. United Airlines has a survey after each flight, and one of the questions is: "No matter how often I travel by plane, I still get excited", and I always answer: "strongly agree". Non-fliers and IVBTs don't get it. They always have frustration and tragedies with air travel, but just like anything, if you do it enough, you become good at it, and for me it is fun. I enjoy the airports (I have a RCC membership). I like getting nice treatement being an elite, and even knowing the GA, TA, flight crew, who get a kick out of me reciting the safety announcments word for word, and the TSA loves me because I am prepared for screeing, well in advance.

Are we eco-scourge? Well according to many--including Al Gore (who uses more electricity in his home in a month, than most use in a year), all MRs are. Of course he always flew around in a private Boeing several times a month for eight years, but *I'm* a baddie for leisure travel. //enough Gore bashing...after all he did make this forum possible by inventing the Internet.//

What's the difference between montly plane trips, and those who commute 2 hours one-way in traffic 5 days a week?

Anyway, I love doing this, and as long as I have my health, the time, and the finances, I will fly and do MRs. Everyone has their thing...this is mine.
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Old Jun 5, 08, 3:15 pm
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Originally Posted by czarina View Post
Are we eco-scourge? Well according to many--including Al Gore (who uses more electricity in his home in a month, than most use in a year), all MRs are. Of course he always flew around in a private Boeing several times a month for eight years
Exactly. Commercial air travel is PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION. The plane would be going with or without us on board. Aside from the very minimal increased fuel burn from the weight of our bodies and luggage on board, the planes don't release any more emissions just because we're there.

I guess you have to factor in emissions from our driving to/from the airport, but compared to daily 45-minute commutes, it's much less than the average Joe. I ride my bike to work on most days.
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Old Jun 5, 08, 3:22 pm
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Add me to the crazy list. I also came from a fear-of-flying background, so repetition was the key for me. That morphed into my current addiction to going anywhere, for any reason, just for the miles.
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Old Jun 5, 08, 5:30 pm
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Originally Posted by ESpen36 View Post
I truly love the excitement of travel, the on-board service, the bustle of the airport, keeping myself entertained, enjoying premium lounges, being treated as one of the airline's very best customers, etc. It's definitely my #1 hobby.
I agree! Except I find the lounges to be exactly the opposite of "bustle."
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Old Jun 6, 08, 8:03 am
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Originally Posted by RNE
Originally Posted by ESpen36 View Post
I truly love the excitement of travel, the on-board service, the bustle of the airport, keeping myself entertained, enjoying premium lounges, being treated as one of the airline's very best customers, etc. It's definitely my #1 hobby.
I agree! Except I find the lounges to be exactly the opposite of "bustle."
Indeed!
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Old Jun 6, 08, 8:10 am
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I also think MRs like the live action of what takes place in the airport. The fun, the excitement, the commerce, the drama. Meeting people you'll never meet again. Like in the movie "Flight Club", where Ed Norton's character describes the people he meets in airports and on planes, "single serving friends". I like that. You talk to people you'd never otherwise meet. You enrich yourself from their experiences. You hear stories, meet newlyweds, a retired couple going on the trip of a life time. You also meet our boys and girl off to battle and seeing their heart wrenching goodbyes at the gate. I've learned so much from people and experience. I would fly every weekend if I could.

Yes we MRs are a strange and crazy breed. I am so glad that article was done. I now feel that I am not alone in my air travel insanity.
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Old Jun 6, 08, 8:18 am
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Originally Posted by czarina View Post
Yes we MRs are a strange and crazy breed. I am so glad that article was done. I now feel that I am not alone in my air travel insanity.
See, that's where I'm a little different. Given some of the promos that pop up, I think the crazy ones are the people who don't do mileage runs!

Mike

Last edited by mikeef; Jun 6, 08 at 11:39 am
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Old Jun 6, 08, 8:58 am
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I'm off on my June MR tomorrow (just a quick Saturday transcon and back).

I do state every time this story comes up that I think we should keep our hobby to ourselves and not seek publicity lest the rules change to eliminate our passion.
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Old Jun 6, 08, 9:25 am
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Originally Posted by ESpen36 View Post
Fascinating article/interview:
http://rickseaney.com/2008/06/03/mil...re-they-crazy/


Excerpt:



The above is EXACTLY why I love MRs! Couldn't have said it better myself! I truly love the excitement of travel, the on-board service, the bustle of the airport, keeping myself entertained, enjoying premium lounges, being treated as one of the airline's very best customers, etc. It's definitely my #1 hobby.

In fact, if I go more than a few weeks without traveling, I start to go through withdrawal. Seriously.


My family thinks I'm crazy, and I've lost my significant other to this hobby. But I wouldn't dream of stopping!

Me, too. It's just the sheer excitement of going to different places, being on the plane, finding a great deal, scoring more miles, I L.O.V.E. it!
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Old Jun 6, 08, 1:03 pm
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Originally Posted by RNE
I agree! Except I find the lounges to be exactly the opposite of "bustle."
I find the contrast of the two delicious. At one time I might prefer one to
the other, but I love having the options.
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Old Jun 6, 08, 2:52 pm
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Originally Posted by dgwright99 View Post
Same here, though I do see MRs as very much a means to an end. Spending a day doing a CLD-SMF 6-segemnt run is not that exciting though, but it does give me a day of peace and quiet and an opportuinity to read a couple of books...

I could get quite excited about a weekend TATL MR in C/J/F though....
This is one of the key advantages of UA MRs out of NYC... I'm on a transcon run this weekend, upgraded p.s. flights both ways. Okay, it's not the same as TATL upfront, but (a) it's a lot cheaper and (b) I'm there and back in one day.
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Old Jun 6, 08, 3:29 pm
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I actually met Karen, and some other FTers, on the SIN-HKG segment on 5/18. I was in 15A and she was in 15G or H. In fact, everybody on 15 was a FTer.
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