Travel Gadget Reviews

An IT professional by day, this HappyFlyer is a self-proclaimed tech enthusiast with a passion for travel. Hailing from the East Coast, she will be writing about her interest in travel gadgets and sharing her best travel tips and unique perspective on travel experiences.

Hawaiian Airline’s Plumeria Lounge in Honolulu

During my inter-island transit in Hawaii, I had the chance to visit the Hawaiian Airline’s Plumeria lounge at the HNL airport. Access to Lounge The lounge is relatively new, and it opened in 2015. Lounge access is open to those flying on Hawaiian Airlines’ international business class, Priority Pass members, and those who wish to buy a lounge pass. The lounge was added to the Priority Pass network sometime in 2016.  Since I am a Priority Pass member through Citi Prestige, I can bring 2 guests in with me.   The lounge has limited hours on certain weekdays, so be...

Read More

If only I knew this was going to be my airline meal…

Unless I am sitting in the premium cabin, I don’t really expect great airline food. Or even good food. In fact, my expectation is that it would just be an average, consumable meal. My Recent Meal Onboard I am not saying that I expect ALL airline food to be bad.   Some have actually been quite good.  In fact, I still remembered that I had an oh-so-good Caesar salad meal on United Airlines once.  Granted, it was a pay-for-purchase, but meal service was not included and my growling stomach beckoned. On my most recent flight experience on Delta, things...

Read More

Are You Participating in IHG’s Accelerate Promotion?

For those who are not familiar with IHG’s Accelerate campaign, IHG (Intercontinental Hotel Group) runs a quarterly promotion that allows IHG members to “earn bonus points on your travels faster”. It is just as the name implies: “Accelerate”. This quarter’s promotion period runs from  5/15/17 to 8/31/17. What is IHG’s Accelerate? The premise is simple.  Each person gets his/her own customized offers. When you meet the conditions of an offer, you get extra IHG bonus points. These offers can range from staying x number of nights at an IHG property, using the IHG credit card to pay for a stay, or...

Read More

Should You Always Split a PNR for a Better Chance at an Upgrade?

If you have status on a frequent flier program and traveling with others without status, the conventional wisdom is that you split up the Passenger Number Record (PNR).  This ensures that you have the highest chances of getting an upgrade. The premise is simple.  If there is only one upgrade-able seat but you have multiple passengers on your PNR, you’re going to get passed over by that one passenger with equal status who can take that upgraded seat. Does It Ever Make Sense Not to Split the PNR? We ran into this scenario in our recent trip. My brother...

Read More

My Experience: Giving out Free Roses to Random Strangers

I had previously written a post about how I was totally wrong about Hawaii.  I wanted to go back for a second visit, and we made it happen this month.   It was also great timing since my brother needed to be there to attend a good friend’s wedding. Wedding Flowers My brother was given a bouquet of beautiful roses (centerpiece) from the wedding.   They were gorgeous. He got back late from the wedding event, so I only saw the roses the next morning. There was only a slight problem.  We were flying out to another island that afternoon, so...

Read More

My First Voluntary Denied Boarding Turned into The Best Airport Day, Ever!

I ended up having one of the best airport days this week. It didn’t start out looking anything like one. The first flight of my trip started off with a bang — a flight delay. My family and I were traveling from Honolulu to Boston, with a connecting flight in Minneapolis. It was supposed to be a 7 hour 45 minutes flight in economy.  It took longer. Delayed Flight The flight delay was announced on-board the HNL-MSP segment after the plane left the gate. There was a systems issue with one of the four servers and a reboot didn’t...

Read More

Review: InterContinental Toronto Centre

I booked a stay at the InterContinental Toronto Centre for my last night in Toronto.  The hotel is conveniently located in downtown Toronto and it is within walking distance to Toronto’s Harbourfront. The famous CN Tower is right there, as well as the Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada which is literally just around the corner from the hotel.  You can also walk to Toronto’s Entertainment District from the hotel.     Awesome Check-In Experience Check-in was just plain awesome.  The staff was friendly and professional. I booked two rooms and both are the King room type.  My desired room type –...

Read More

Four Pictures: A Funny Sprinkler Warning and 3 Hotel Room Design Flaws

Sometimes I really wonder what hotels are actually thinking of when they design rooms or when they decide on the placement of certain items in the rooms. Sometimes those puzzling decisions actually made me laugh out loud. 1. The Sprinkler Problem I laughed at this one.  You can see the ceiling at the top of the photo.  Right below the ceiling is a sprinkler system.  It comes with very clear visual instruction what it is NOT to be used for. I imagine there has to be a reason the signage is there. Still, there is a closet space with...

Read More

Review: Marriott Springhill Suites Toronto-Vaughan

I recently stayed at the Marriott Springhill Suites in Toronto-Vaughan.  I picked this hotel because it had great reviews and the rooms looked comfortable.  It seemed like a good place to rest up after a road trip. Check In Experience We arrived at the property well past midnight due to a few unplanned hiccups.  After a short wait, a front desk staff came out to assist with my reservations.  She was awesome and got us checked in quickly. Midway through the check-in process, she thanked me for being a Marriott elite member and offered a welcome gift for each...

Read More

Review: My First Stay at a Staybridge Suites (Toronto-Markham)

This past weekend, I had my first stay ever at a Staybridge Suites property.  Staybridge Suites is an extended stay hotel, and the hotel brand is under the umbrella of IHG. Normally, I don’t stay at a place long enough to warrant an “extended” hotel.  I generally  think of “extended stay” as a week or longer.  However, through word-of-mouth, I heard some great things about a good value hotel:  Staybridge Suites Toronto-Markham.  The general price range for this hotel is $140-180/night. I booked 2 rooms for my party for a night’s stay. Location The hotel is in a decent...

Read More

Categories

Archives

Twitter