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Requalifying for UA 1K: Around the US and to Tokyo in Biz

Requalifying for UA 1K: Around the US and to Tokyo in Biz

Old Dec 11, 2018, 9:32 pm
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: DTW/MBS
Programs: UA 1K, HHonors Diamond, Hyatt Globalist, Formerly Starbucks Gold
Posts: 3,524
Requalifying for UA 1K: Around the US and to Tokyo in Biz

Hello FT,

Welcome to my Trip Report. At the highest level, this report outlines 4 days worth of requalifying for 1K.

The first part is two one way multi-city tickets, DTW-IAH-SFO-LAX, and then LAX-IAH-EWR-DTW, all in business class. As an AVGeek, I was thrilled with the aircraft I'll be in - 1 E175,1 E170, 1 789, 1 739 MAX, 1 752, and 1 772 (HD Config). The "time" between these two tickets is only 55 minutes.

The second part is my first ever international business class experience with UA. I will be doing YYZ-EWR-NRT, NRT-SFO-IAH-GRR, which will have two legs on the 77W, so I'm pretty excited about that. I will have about 24 hours in Tokyo, and will be heading to Akihabara to stay in a capsule hotel. These reports mean a lot to me because I don't really get to experience international premium products, so I hope you enjoy the journey with me.

Background/Trip Planning

Two and a half years ago I jumped ship from United to American since (at the time), there wasn't a spend requirement for AA. I love to fly, love the concept of Mile Runs in general, but I'm the type of flyer who can (and did) fly over 100,000 miles without spending even 6k. I made it to Executive Platinum, but as AA introduced a spend requirement, I opted to move back to UA, mainly because of UA's flexible Same Day Change policy. I did a status challenge to fly 30,000 miles in 90 days which was no problem at all for me. But since there was no spend attached to that, I didn't really have to earn it.

This year - I would have ended the year at about 85,000 miles and a tad over $7k in spend. While I could probably scrape by and spend 5k out of pocket, that would pretty much wipe all the savings and free money I had. And was it even worth it? (According to FT, definitely not). But a couple things happened. First, I got a new (dream) job as a consultant in November. This should have plenty of travel for me next year. Next, I did get a single, last minute work trip in that cost almost $900, taking a chunk out of my requirement. I then remembered that I had a large pool of Chase Points that I've yet to use, that could be redeemed for 1.5 cents each. I could have depleted my account and spent nothing out of pocket, but I decided to apply for the Chase Ink Preferred card to help restore some of the points I would spend. In total I would redeem about $1,500 worth of chase points, use a $300-ish UA voucher, and spend 2500 out of pocket (on my new chase card) for these trips. While directly redeeming points from Chase is far from optimal, it allowed me to use some without spending (more) money out of pocket, and I did have a pretty hefty balance. Most importantly I would earn PQD on my flights, which is the whole purpose of all of this.

Most people would say it's just not worth it, but to me, it was. This was my first year 1K and I really enjoyed it. I also don't have the luxury of heavy travel and especially not J travel. I also didn't want to drop down to platinum for a year before (maybe) requalifying for 1k. I honestly have no idea if I will be able to hit $15k worth of travel, even as a consultant, but we'll see.

For the first part of my trip, this was planned after I had already booked my Tokyo trip. I needed to spend about 1500. I could have just bought a full unrestricted Y ticket something like DTW-ORD-GRR and back, but where's the fun in that? I saw some pretty good P fares out of Toronto to Honolulu - $550ish one way in business class. The return options weren't the best though and in economy. I decided I didn't want to pay for a hotel, so would fly to the west coast and back. I chose LAX as I'm a big fan of the star alliance lounge and just the airport in general. Business fares were about 500 each way two weeks out, so not bad. I wanted to book DTW-IAD-DEN-SFO-LAX, but the Chase Portal is complete garbage. And I mean, COMPLETE garbage. It would not price out my flights correctly, and it wouldn't even display some flights. Even with a multi-city force, it booked one or two legs in economy with a price break. What should have been a $650 one way business class ticket was pricing out at over a thousand dollars for a mix of economy and business class. I tried to do the Hawaii fare - same issue. If I tried to book on the regular expedia engine (not through chase), it priced out just fine, so I was not happy. I just finally tried multi city searches with the hubs, and was able to have it spit out DTW-IAH-SFO-LAX all in business. Even though there were plenty of "cheap" P fares avialable, the Chase portal never showed any. This would book into "Z" class. The price ended up being about 800, which meant that would cover half the money I need, AND IAH-SFO was on a 789, which I have yet to be on (but will do SFO-IAH in two weeks). SFO-LAX was on a 739, but the night before switched to a 739 Max, which I was super happy about since I could try one out for a short flight.

For the second part, there was a Flyertalk thread about decent YYZ-SIN fares on UA, but I also noticed NRT was around the 2700 range roundtrip (P class). Being based in Detroit, Toronto isn't horrible as a starting/ending point. But for an extra 200 or so, I could return to pretty much anywhere in Michigan. The thing is/was though - value wasn't the driving factor, since I had to spend about 4200 PQD wise (so 4500+ with all the fees that don't count). So I opted to return to Grand Rapids. The routing I picked was intentional - it had to be all on UA metal as I had a UA voucher. I wanted to try the real polaris product, so I thought westbound EWR-NRT was the best pick. Eastbound I was a little more flexible, but chose NRT-SFO-IAH-GRR as NRT-SFO was on the 77W, SFO-IAH was on the 789, IAH-GRR on a E175 (although this would have been a 100% cpu), and I would get to spend time in the polaris lounges at all the hubs.

I ran into the same issues trying to book a return flight. The system would always spit out a mix of economy and business class. I knew though that I wanted to be on the 1255am LAX-IAH since that was on a 772 and I'd be able to sleep. From there…whatever. I figured routing through IAD to go to the LH lounge and then back to Detroit. But one of the options it spit out when I was multicity searching was LAX-IAH connecting to IAH-EWR-DTW, and the IAH-EWR was on one of the 752s, which I've never been on (plenty of 753s though). The price worked out perfectly - 870ish, putting me just over where I would need to be. Once booked, my itinerary was

Ticket 1

DTW-IAH
IAH-SFO
SFO-LAX

55 minutes

Ticket 2
LAX-IAH
IAH-EWR
EWR-DTW

I eagerly awaited the next 10 days to head down to the airport.

Ticket 3 (Different Trip)
YYZ-EWR
EWR-NRT
NRT-SFO
SFO-IAH
IAH-GRR

TRIP 1
The trip down to DTW from work was very pleasant. A cool fall day with no weather activity, it only took me about 20 minutes to get to DTW's Big Blue parking deck, directly across and connected to DTW's north terminal. Parking is $14/day, which is absurb, but the long term remote was $12/day, and off airport parking is around 10, but I loathe parking, waiting for a bus, waiting for other people, then getting to the airport and doing the return dance when I get back. My walk from the blue deck to the counter only took about 5 minutes, so it's definitely worth the extra $8 or so.

The airport was pretty quiet for a Friday afternoon. I arrived around 1215, and the only real activity was a queue starting to form for the Lufthansa flight (leaves at 415), and a small queue for the Air Canada checkin counter (checkin was set to open at 1225). There was not a single person in the precheck line, so I was through security in about a minute total. I think I spent more time zig zagging the line then actual security. It was about a 5 minute walk down to the Lufthansa Lounge.


DTW North Terminal


This lounge is now a Priority Pass Lounge, but I have access via being star gold on United. The lounge was pretty quiet, and I was directed to the left area. I was here last month and they put all priority pass people on the left side, and LH/*G on the right. By 115, the lounge was at 110%. There wasn't a single seat open, and a line of people to get in. I obviously don't know how many people were PP vs * Gold vs LH Business, but I have NEVER seen the lounge have more then 10 people in it. I wouldn't think it would start to get busy with LH travelers until closer to 230/3ish. The Internet also started to get pretty slow, as 2/3rds of people had out their laptop.


Calm Before the Storm in the Lufthansa Lounge

I had a small meal beforehand so didn't eat anything in the lounge, but did get a diet coke and a little bit of Jagermeister. Food was a selection of fruit and vegetables, finger sandwiches, and some chips and M&Ms. About 130 they brought out turkey, gravy, and stuffing ( I think), as well as ham and pineapple. At about 2pm I decided to leave. I actually felt uncomfortable with the amount of people around me - part of the room was standing room only it seemed. I would only have to kill about 15 minutes with the unwashed masses, and also wanted to see if I could grab a peek of the LH bird, so off I went. My inbound from IAH had arrived on time so all was good so far. I didn't get to see the LH A343 as it was still over central Michigan, but we boarded on time.

Delta A350 taxiing (for Beijing I believe)


It ended up pretty busy in the LH lounge

My UAx plane N85320 had just pulled up as I left

Flight: UA 6172 DTW-IAH
Plane: E175 - N85320
Seat: 2A
Scheduled Departure 2:45PM Actual Departure 2:41PM (4 minutes early)
Scheduled Arrival 4:58 PM Actual Arrival: 5:12 PM (14 minutes late)

No families or preboards or military members, so I was second to board with another 1K member. The E175 has 4 rows of 1-2 seating in first class, so I opted for 2A, which is quickly becoming my go to seats in first class. I'm not a bulkhead fan, and I really value having my bag right next to me. I opted for a coke for my predeparture beverage, and would sit for another 30 minutes or so until we eventually pushed back. I did get a view of the LH 343 coming in to land - there's just something special about seeing four engines on a plane.

LH's 343 landing

As we were taxiing, a Delta 350 took off for Beijing (I believe). From directly behind, it looks beautiful. The wings flexing make the plane look much bigger than it really is. Instead of the usual very short taxi and takeoff on Runway 22L (which the 350 did), we taxied in between the North and McNamarra terminals out to 21R and were on our way. Off to a good start!

The flight attendant offered me another drink and asked if I would like to have dinner, which was a chicken wrap and some fruit. I'm a very picky eater, but opted in anyways for the fruit and chocolate piece. After delivering beverages, the FA passed over me as she was delivering meals. I thought that was a bit odd, since there was only one meal choice, and I'm fairly certain I wouldn't be too low on the totem pole of elites for this flight to not be served first. Everyone was served but me, and the FA disappeared into the small galley and closed the curtain for at least 10 minutes. Looks like I got skipped over for my meal, fun. When she emerged I flagged her down to get my meal, for which she apologized forgetting me. As I said I'm a very picky eater, so it was hard to eat the wrap. There was an orange paste on the sandwich, which I wasn't going to try. I was able to find a couple pieces of chicken untouched, which was actually pretty good. The fruit was good, and the chocolate bar was…a chocolate caramel bar.

Lunch on DTW-IAH


If you've ever wondered how accurate FlightRadar24 is

As we got into the northern "South", our ride got a little bumpy. Winter Storm Diego was heading over across most of the South. For the last 1.5 hours of the flight, it felt like we were in a cloud. I didn't see anything until about 45 seconds before landing. With that said, the flight was extremely quiet. Most people seemed to be sleeping, and it was almost a tad bit eerie. I opted for some games on my phone, but it was just so quiet. My 789 was flying into IAH from SFO, and I checked to see and find out it was running about 20 minutes behind due to ATC delays in SFO.


My view for the last hour and a half DTW-IAH

As we prepared to land, we descended into heavy rain. I saw my 789 was in a holding pattern, so toyed with the idea of going to Landry's and using my Priority Pass once I would get to the gate. We landed in IAH and taxied for about 15 minutes, before pulling into our gate. Landry's was right next door, but I opted to go to my gate for San Francisco and not rush things. While walking to my gate, I came across a memorial to George H Bush, for whom the airport is named after. President Bush had recently passed away, and I believe United even had a memorial the prior two days at gate 41 (since he was the 41st president). I got to the gate and checked flightradar24 to see our plane was on final approach.

George Bush Memorial

Sitting at the end of the C pier felt more like a shopping mall then an airport. I really like the ambiance, and only wished I wasn't traveling alone tonight and had someone to share the experience (and the ensuing 789) with. While waiting, a man and woman emerged from a nearby gate that I don't believe had a plane departing or arriving from. He angrily tossed into the air his bag, making a loud THUD as it hit the ground, followed by another bag. I thought something was about to go down, and pretty much the entire end of the pier was looking on as a couple other gate agents nearby came over to help diffuse the situation. I don't know what was going on, or what happened. I would guess IDB (but why would they be coming from the jet bridge?). Domestic Quarrel? As I just said though, there wasn't any flight leaving from that gate as far as I could tell. After about 10 minutes him and the woman he was with left very frustrated.


In Between Terminals @IAH


I tried to play the "Finger Skating" game on the ipads, but the game wouldn't load for me. Directly across from me was two very young girls playing on an ipad, and one of them wanted to be number 666. She asked her sister if she knew that if you said "666" at 3am, that someone would show up and take you away. These girls were like 7, yikes!

It was about another 30 minutes until I would board. As you can imagine, a Friday afternoon flight from two very elite heavy airport hubs meant a huge mess around boarding. Still though with preboarding, I was on my plane plenty early. It would actually be close to an hour before we would even taxi.]
My View of gate C7, where IAH-SFO would depart from

Flight: UA 1541 IAH-SFO
Plane: 787-900 - N29961
Seat: 6L
Scheduled Departure: 6:15PM Actual Departure: 7:13PM (58 minutes late)
Scheduled Arrival: 8:20PM Actual Arrival: 10:02PM (1hr 42 minutes late)

It's a joy being able to be in business class on a dreamliner. As soon as I sat down, and stared out the window, all I could do was marvel at how big the engine is. It's practically the size of the plane I was just on! It was also raining pretty good, so I definitely felt "cozy" in my seat. And good thing, as we would push back and takeoff late. I ordered another coke for my PDB. My flight attendant asked if I would like dinner tonight - a thai chicken (yuck) or butternut squash ravioli (double yuck). I had asked if he could grab me one of the deep dish pizzas instead, and he said he would try. As our departure time rolled around, we were still loading lots of cargo. There was finally an announcement from the pilot that we were having difficulties communicating with the ground to push us back, but we eventually did, before waiting for another 20 minutes or so to start taxiing.


The Engine is bigger than my last plane!

I had about a 2 and a half hour connection at SFO, but it was now down to a little over 30 minutes. I was going to use some of that time to get dinner with my priority pass, but that wouldn't be an option now. Nothing to do but sitback and enjoy the flight…right?


The Weather @IAH and the South

I started off by watching scrooged. I had never seen it before but heard recently it was a good Christmas movie to watch, but I really did not like it. During the movie, my flight attendant came over to tell me that pizza was not an option, and they only had one meal choice left if I wanted it. I opted to take it for the sides, and was delivered the butternut squash ravioli plate. I ate the salad, the pretzel roll (good), and the turtle cheesecake dessert. I asked the flight attendant if there was any other cheesecake or pretzel rolls left, and he returned with a single pretzel roll. Good enough I guess.

Around this time, I received a notification that my SFO-LAX flight was delayed by a half hour, which would be a VERY tight connection for me, as I only had 55 minutes at LAX. There was a plane swap. Still a 737 max, but my plane was now coming from Chicago, and left late due waiting to load bags. I checked my 777 bird that was supposed to take me LAX-IAH, and it was delayed a small bit, but there was a large gap in time at LAX for it so it wouldn't be affected. And then the rolling delays started. Before I landed at SFO, my SFO-LAX flight was delayed almost two hours. It ended up leaving an hour and 43 minutes late.


This delay would cause me to misconnect at LAX

I had a travel delay change to use if I wanted to (from my SFO-IAH flight actually), but that would do me no good as LAX-IAH-EWR-DTW was on another ticket. I decided that a reroute from SFO-IAH made the most sense, and there was a flight leaving SFO at 1250am that would allow me to fly the rest of my second ticket, and as luck would have it, there was one business seat open (albeit in "C" and not "Z").

After landing, I decided use one of my United Club one-time passes to get help rebooking. I visited the "E" club - the smaller, and most recently renovated club where I was granted entry. I went to rebooking and explained my situation, along with what I wanted to. The woman helping me was a bit confused naturally, but knew what I was doing and said she would have to call reservations.

She went over the reservation with the reservations desk, where I politely tried to remind her what I wanted to do. For all I knew reservations would reroute me SFO-DTW the next day and be done with it. But, after about 5 minutes, all was good. UA dropped the last segment SFO-LAX, ending that reservation, and on my second reservation, changed the first flight SFO-IAH, replacing LAX-IAH. I was very diligent to make sure that my reservation wouldn't cancel for missed segments, but UA handled it exactly how I hoped. I figured (correctly) I would have to reach out later for Original Routing Credit.

It was now 1045, and this United club was closing in 15 minutes, so I moved over to United's other club, which wasn't an issue. There was brownie bits and celery, and some other hamster wheel food that I didn't realize until later. I had about an hour and a half, so just began to unwind. Until I realized I left my (favorite) hat at the other United Club. I had taken it off before talking to the lady, and left it at the service desk there. I quickly ran to the front desk and asked if they could call someone over there or do something. It was 1130, so the club closed a half hour ago. A guy at this club said once its closed, its closed, and there's nothing we could do. He suggested maybe going to a United Club once I landed and seeing if they could call the club here. He also said they would probably just take it to lost and found.

Now, it's completely my fault. I agree. But…the woman knew exactly what flight I was on (there's only like 3 flight leaving after 11pm as it is), my name, she had my record locators, knew what gate I would be at. I was really hoping that someone would have taken it to my gate, or attempted to page me, or something. But no. The gate suggested I fill out a lost and found report, which I did, and so far no luck. This really bummed me out. It's my fault, yes, but c'mon UA. 0 willingness to do anything or help out. As of the time of this report, no success.

Bummed out, I filled out the lost and found report. I couldn't have been any more specific. I left my hat at this specific location at this specific time and right next to this specific employee. We began boarding around 1215 am, onto the very boring and ordinary 739.

Flight: UA 1197
Plane: 737-900 - N62849
Seat: 4C
Scheduled Departure: 12:50AM Actual Departure: 12:45AM (5 minutes early)
Scheduled Arrival: 6:24AM Actual Arrival: 6:13am (11 minutes early).

No DirecTV on this plane, no refurbished seating, it was about as boring and generic as it gets. I guess I should be thankful I at least was in business class for this flight, as I would attempt to sleep. I'm usually a window person, but there was only this single aisle seat left. I had another coke, and just sat down kicking myself for leaving my hat at the club, and frustrated at United for putting me in that situation to begin with - if I had made my original flight, I would have never stopped. I was also starting to question what I was doing and if any of this made sense. I also thought about just SDC'ing IAH-EWR-DTW into IAH-DTW. I couldn't do the morning (without calling) IAH-DTW flight as it was an E145, so no Z Class. There was an 11am plane with availability, but when I checked where that plane was coming from, it showed a 2 hr delay due to mandatory pilot rest. Good thing I didn't switch to this, as it would eventually end up delayed 2 hrs and got in the same time as me.

The flight was less than ideal. The cabin was way too warm, and there was a gentlemen who was snoring very loudly. Snoring is pretty much nails on a chalkboard to me, I can't stand it. Especially the "starting a chainsaw" type snore. I did have my Bose noise canceling in my bag in the overhead bin, but tried to tough it out. I managed to go in and out throughout the flight, and felt somewhat rested by the time we landed in Houston. My connection was one gate over, so that was good. I didn't have a very long layover, but that was good since there wasn't anything for me to do in IAH. I walked over and waited about 15 minutes and then we started to board.

Flight: UA 1666
Plane: 757-200 - N57111
Seat: 1F
Scheduled Departure: 7:25am Actual Departure 7:22am (3 minutes early)
Scheduled Arrival: 11:49am Actual Arrival: 11:36am (13 minutes early)

I was very excited to fly this plane. There are only 16 seats in F, and this is an example of a plane that United would fly on its premium routes. They have lie flat beds, so I figured I would be able to catchup on some sleep. I broke my bulkhead rule because of the larger footwell's that seats 1A and 1F have. The problem though, is that at 6'1, my legs had to be bent. And when I put the seat into bed room, I lost even more legroom. I was forced to put my bag into the overhead bin, and wasn't happy about that. Anyways another coke, and we left on time and took off relatively short after.


My seat was just a tad bit worn


The "larger" footwells that the bulkhead has on 752's


View of IAH after takeoff


Clouds above IAH


My feet were pressed up against the wall. Would not recommend the 752's for taller people (I'm 6'0)

Breakfast was the choice of an egg sandwich (which had cheese on it, so not a big fan)or granola and yogurt. I opted for the granola, as that's simple enough. Except when I got it, it was covered in what I'm guessing is white greek yogurt? It tasted disgusting. While we were eating, my seatmate in 1E asked me to lower both window sills. I'm a pretty big proponent of "window seat makes that decision," but knew I was already frustrated with everything and didn't want to do or say anything I'd regret, so sheepishly complied. I got a sweet roll with breakfast, which was kind of like a cinnamon roll, so that was good. I asked and received a croissant as well, which was pretty good.


Oatmeal...I'm told.

This was about the most uneventful flight of my trip. On time, no bumps, and other then a disappointing seat and meal, uneventful flight. We landed into Newark early, and held short of the runway as a United 777-300 took off bound for Tokyo. I think I took a pretty decent picture.There was an earlier EWR-DTW flight that left at 1130am, so I missed it by about 5 minutes (well closer to 15 I guess). I was hoping for a small delay to change into it, but no dice). I would have three hours at Newark, which is kind of a deadspot for lounge access and amenities. I didn't want to burn another UA pass.


UA 777-300 taking off for Tokyo

I was pretty hungry and decided to head over the global bazaar area, which has plenty of options for someone like me. At first, I smelled the hamburgers, which smelled amazing. But a hamburger, fries, and drink is about $15. Pizza sounded good, but that was a bit pricey too. I opted on a bowl of Chicken noodle Soup, which is probably my second favorite food (behind Fish N Chips), and a plain Hot Dog. My total was $9, which wasn't too bad. The hot dog was big, and tasted great. The soup was just so-so.


The global bazaar at IAH Terminal C


Hot dog and soup. For $4, it was a big hot dog, and tasted really good.


I headed down to where my gate was supposed to be. My gate was at the end of the C pier, but downstairs. Upstairs isn't the most exciting gate area, but there is a good view of the New York and the tarmac, and bar seating. I skyped my girlfriend for a bit, watched some of the Michigan-South Carolina basketball game, and played a little Forza Horizon on my laptop. I will say - the wifi was extremely impressive - a speed test showed over 90mbps down and up. Phenomenal.

We had a gate changed closer in, so I walked over to my new gate, C71. I kept checking SDC availability as I was looking to move EWR-IAD-DTW, but availability never opened up for the EWR-IAD leg. There was a pretty light load, and all five people on the upgrade list got upgraded, but some more on that in a minute.


My original gate area for EWR-DTW (downstairs).


There actually was an okay view of EWR and New York


Robin was also impressed with Newark's Wi-Fi speeds

Flight: UA 3418
Plane: E170 - N864RW
Seat: 2A
Scheduled Departure 3:25PM Actual Departure 3:24pm (1 Minute Early)
Scheduled Arrival: 5:24PM Actual Arrival: 5:17pm (7 Minutes Early)

The E170 has just two rows of 1-2 seating in business class. I had seat 2A, the best seat on the plane. All 5 other seats were upgrades. There was one other 1K with me, and the others were gold or silver, I'm not completely sure as they weren't speaking English other than "1K" and "gold" and "silver". They seemed pretty surprised they were upgraded.

Anyways I preboarded with the other 1K member. Our friendly flight attendant came to take drinks, and that's where the game of "what alcohol" do you have begun. The first guy wanted a gin and tonic, and then the other people he was with said they wanted one to. Well…our FA said he would have to check for other bottles. He took the rest of our drink orders, which for me was just a plain coke. He served one G&T, then went to the back to find more. He came back and only had one, so went over the list again with another guy who finally ordered something else. After serving everyone, our safety briefing began. I still hadn't gotten my coke. Then he collected the drinks. No coke. No acknowledgement.

And it left me feeling really frustrated. Frustrated that a 1K would get left behind because he had to run around trying to see what alcohol we had on board for a bunch of people just ordering it because. I know mistakes happen, but this was the third service error I had encountered in 4 flights (forgetting to bring me my dinner, and not getting me a pizza). Before this, I'd never had a single problem. And all this with the flying, I could say I was a tad cranky, but still…I got completely left behind for my drink.


Somewhere over Ontario

Once in the air, the other flight attendant showed up with the snack basket. I saw pretzels, salted chips, and packaged oreos. I asked if he would be able to check for a bag of the antioxidant mix for me (fruit trail mix). After this, I noticed our FA looking at his phone intensively, before then coming up to me and apologizing for not getting me my drink earlier. The other FA came back and offered me the tapas boxes he had, which I took. So, at least a partial recover, that made me feel somewhat better.

I don't recall seeing the FA for the rest of the flight though until getting the cabin ready to land. No drink refills, and a pretty quiet flight with most people sleeping. We had a great view of Detroit as we came into Romulus, and arrived on time. From there, it was a 10 minute walk to my car and I was on my way back to my apartment before making the two hour drive to Kalamazoo to visit with my girlfriend.


Downtown Detroit. Almost home!

SUMMARY PT 1

Well, it didn't go without problems. The service was a step below what I've come to expect from United (and the UAx) crews. The highlight was spending about 5 hours on a 789 from IAH-SFO. Leaving my favorite hat at the United club put a real dent into my happiness, and the hassle of getting rebooked and lack of sleep definitely took out some of the enjoyment I thought I would get from this. I do have one more thing to take care of - getting ORC for my SFO-LAX leg, but I have to wait another day before UA can grant me credit for it.

My upcoming trip next week should be a lot more enjoyable. I'm guessing it will also be of more interest to most on this site. Several polaris lounges for food, two rides on the 777-300, and another ride on the 789 from IAH-SFO. That, coupled with the fact I'm on Christmas Break, should make for a pretty cool trip. I don't regret the trip - I love flying after all, but I probably would have planned it a bit differently with more time to do so.
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Last edited by BThumme; Dec 15, 2018 at 3:02 pm
BThumme is offline  
Old Dec 15, 2018, 3:03 pm
  #2  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: DTW/MBS
Programs: UA 1K, HHonors Diamond, Hyatt Globalist, Formerly Starbucks Gold
Posts: 3,524
I was able to call in and get my original routing credit, so all is good with that. My hat remains unfound, and I've unfortunately given up hope on that. I've also gotten the pictures working finally, and part 2 will get underway on Wednesday.
BThumme is offline  
Old Dec 15, 2018, 5:29 pm
  #3  
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: 6km East of EPAYE
Programs: UA Silver, AA Platinum, AS & DL GM Marriott TE, Hilton Gold
Posts: 9,582
I love a good mileage run TR, and I'm sorry about your hat. I just lost one of my favorites in PHX two weeks ago. Thanks for sharing ^
Madone59 is offline  
Old Dec 16, 2018, 3:42 pm
  #4  
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: TPA-MKE-PHX
Programs: Ex DL-DM. MM. TWA-Aviator Plat. HHonors-DVIP, MR-Gold. Nat-Emerald. Avis Chairmn.
Posts: 1,925
Great TR. One thing I have learned over the years...don't take off your hat!
tvnwz is offline  
Old Dec 16, 2018, 11:13 pm
  #5  
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Programs: DL Diamond; Marriott Titanium
Posts: 226
Great TR, lots of moving parts. Hope the rest of the legs are less eventful for you and better service.
HLT1904 is offline  

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