Takeoff To Travel

Hi everyone! The travel bug hit me at the age of eight on my first flight and ever since then I’ve loved planning vacations for my friends and family. I’m a recent college graduate who has a goal to try out new hotel chains and sample the many airline cabins out there. Having been both a city boy and living in the suburbs, I love traveling to all destinations both big and small.

Review: Penthouse Suite at the Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego

Over a year ago, I stumbled on an amazing rate that Extreme Hotel Deals posted on their site for the Penthouse Suite at the Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego. Bookable directly through Hyatt, the rate was $219 for any room type that was available. So, I choose the Manchester Grand Hyatt Penthouse Suite. I was happy when the hotel didn’t contact me or anything about the rate, and there were no bumps along the way. Check In: Arriving at the porte-cochère, I was a bit disappointed to see the temporary lobby still outside (This was labor day weekend)! On my...

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Review: Delta 757 Main Cabin Los Angeles-Honolulu

Background: I booked a Delta flight for my trip to Hawaii since it was the cheapest option for an Expedia Black Friday vacation package. As a Silver Medallion, and booking a non basic economy fare in fare classes T and X, I thought I would be eligible for upgrades. But, I wrote earlier this week on how the tickets purchased through Expedia didn’t allow for upgrades. Interesting to note for future reference. Flight Details: Delta 1149 Los Angeles (LAX) – Honolulu (HNL) Seat: 40A Aircraft: Boeing 757-200 (75G configuration) Delta 1434 Honolulu (HNL)- Los Angeles (LAX) Seat: 24A Aircraft:...

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No Upgrades When Booking on Expedia for Delta Medallions

Background: I booked a Delta flight for my trip to Hawaii since it was the cheapest option for an Expedia Black Friday vacation package. As a Silver Medallion, and booking a non-basic economy fare in fare classes T and X, I thought I would be eligible for upgrades. I was auto-upgraded to Comfort+ on my first leg (but I declined so I could sit with my family). The computer split up my family and I to three different window seats despite a full Comfort Plus row being available at T-24 and all of us on the same reservation. I...

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Review: Southwest Airlines Flights LA-Bay Area

To visit friends in the Bay Area for the weekend, I booked 2 Southwest flights and was able to utilize the Free A-List Free Standby benefit which I wrote about here yesterday. On both flights that I got on, they were with the new livery. This was exciting for me to see when the plane pulled into the gate. I haven’t flown on Southwest in about 10 years, so I was excited to try them out again. FLIGHT DETAILS: Southwest Airlines Flights 103 and 4370 Santa Ana (SNA) to Oakland (OAK) and San Jose (SJC) to Long Beach (LGB)...

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Southwest A-List Free Standby Benefit Review

So, I recently did a status challenge with Southwest in which I could get A-List status for free for 90 days. And to extend the status, I would have to fly 6 segments in the 90 day period. I emailed a screenshot of my Delta Silver Medallion Status, my name and my Southwest Rapid Rewards Number to southwest.statusmatch@wnco.com and within 2 days I was notified that my status match went through! A-List comes with: Priority boarding Fly By® Priority Check-in and Security Lane Access* Dedicated phone line Free same-day standby Earning bonus (25%) The Benefit I Wanted Most… Free...

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Hotel Review: The Modern Honolulu

Background: During Black Friday, Expedia had a great sale for vacation packages at the Modern Honolulu. So I decided Honolulu would be a great place to spend Spring Break. I have never tried the Modern Honolulu before, so it was a good opportunity to try it out as well! Check-In: I checked in around 11 PM on Saturday night, and there was no one in line so it was pretty quick to get our room. Outside the hotel was crowded and rowdy as they do have a nightclub that runs Thurs-Sat. The vibe of the hotel is modern and...

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Hotel Review: Courtyard Oakland Emeryville

A group of friends and I wanted to visit our other friends studying at Cal, so we wanted to find a hotel that was convenient to both Berkeley and San Francisco. Emeryville was logistically one of the best places to stay as it is only about 3 miles from Berkeley Campus, and since its near the Bay Bridge, only 10 miles from San Francisco. A Priceline Express Deal where you don’t know the exact hotel until making the non-refundable reservation had a 3 Star Hotel with a 8/10 guest rating for $114 so I had to snag it! Signs...

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Review: Bluffworks Ascender Chinos and Threshold Performance T-Shirt

For those who don’t know about Bluffworks, they are a New York based company that focuses on creating Travel Clothes that are wrinkle resistant and you can put them in the wash (no dry cleaning needed!) I have previously reviewed Bluffworks products before and I was excited when they sent me their new Ascender Chinos and Threshold Performance T-Shirt. Ascender Chinos: I really like the Bluffworks Ascender chinos. Having already tried the classic chino, I thought the new Ascender chinos were a nice alternative. It’s more lightweight and is stretchier than the old chinos. In my opinion, the old...

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Review: The Renovated Ritz Carlton Coconut Grove, Miami

The Property: The Ritz Carlton, Coconut Grove features 115 guest rooms, giving it a boutique vibe that I love! There’s 2 towers–while one is all residences, the other features rooms on the lower 8 floors, and residences on the top. Pre Arrival: The hotel emailed me roughly a week before for pre-arrival preferences. I noticed reviews on TripAdvisor that said connecting rooms were noisy due to the fact that the hotel had changed carpeting to wood floors, leaving a gap in between the connecting door and the floor. So I requested a non-connecting room on a high floor, and...

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Review: British Airways A380 World Traveller LAX-LHR

For Spring Break, a friend and I decided it would be fun to do a mini-European tour and visit some of our friends who are studying abroad. Being budget conscious college students, we were ecstatic to find $326 airfare on a full service 4 star Skytrax rated airline like British Airways. And on an A380? Sold! I was super excited to try out the British Airways A380 as I’ve never flown on the airline or the aircraft type before. Flight Details: British Airways 268 Los Angeles (LAX) to London (LHR) Aircraft: Airbus A380 Departure: 9:35 PM Arrival: 4:05 PM...

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