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: 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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Review: Sheraton San Diego Mission Valley

For a weekend getaway with my friends, we decided to visit San Diego. Rates for a Saturday night in the city were quite the pretty penny, so it was quite the adventure seeking an accommodation of good value. Behold, the University of California Rate: Rates at the Sheraton San Diego Mission Valley were $283 a night, but after adding the UC Rate, the rate dropped to $169! My friend is still a UC student so we could use the rate! The rate also included parking ,normally $27, yikes! Tip: check if any groups that you’re affiliated with to see...

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Review: Hyatt Regency Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport

Background: My Delta flight from Los Angeles was slated to arrive at 10pm, and I wanted to just head to bed after the flight. So, I booked the Hyatt Regency DFW as it was conveniently inside DFW (you still have to take a short shuttle though). And since it’s a Category 2, at 8,000 World of Hyatt Points it’s a great redemption when rates are high. For my night, the cash rate was $200 so I thought it was a good use of points. Shuttle: Even thought the Hyatt Regency DFW is located at Terminal C, you still need...

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Review: Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego

Background: My friends and I wanted to celebrate our friends 21st Birthday in San Diego! Rates for the particular weekend were quite pricey, and the Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego was over $400 for a standard room (including tax + destination fee). Thankfully, I had a Category 1-4 Certificate that I get yearly from my Hyatt Chase Card so I put that to good use! The Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego is a Category 4 Hotel under World of Hyatt, which I find is a good value due to the expensive rates seen here. Check In: After self parking...

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