2013 was a fun year, full of a mixture of work travel and personal adventures! Although most of my travel was for work and around the United States, I was able to manage to sneak off to Europe a couple of times for fun and fly back from South East Asia – all in business class. As terms of flying, I probably traveled less in 2013 than I have in the last 6 or 7 years, but nevertheless I still got to experience some pretty awesome new planes, new places, and see more of the world that I had yet to explore in previous years.
All-in-All I traveled 98,740 miles (or at least that is what I logged on OpenFlights.org), I am pretty sure I flew more than that in 2013, but this summer I stopped logging a lot of my work flights and then didn’t have time to go back and update OpenFlights because I had forgot what flights I logged and did not log (also part of this comes from pure laziness). Per OpenFlights, I spent 9 days of 2013 at 30,000 feet or approximately 2.5% of the year in the air. Below I have put together a collection of some of my favorite trips from 2013 and thought you might enjoy seeing my favorite airline experiences (and worst experiences) from the year.
Best New Aircrafts of 2013:
United 787 Business Class– New Plane Smell. I just wish the flight was longer!
Lufthansa B747-800 Business Class – New Plane, New Business Class cabin design. It just doesn’t get better than this!
British Airways A380 Premium Econ – A solid hard and soft product!
Delta’s New B747 Business Class – Not a new plane, but the hard product is rock solid!
Best Airline Experiences in 2013
Delta gets me home in a bind – Delta got me home without extra fees during a personal emergency
KLM Flight from LAX – AMS In Business – These flight attendants were among the best and despite the older hard product I will NEVER forget this flight!
BEST Airline Meal of 2013
Fish curry from AMS – MAD – WOW, who knew food could taste this good at 30,000 feet!
Best Lounges I Visited in 2013
Singapore Airlines SilverKris Lounge – Food Options GALORE!
British Airways Gallaries Lounge T5 LHR – Review to come, but overall amazing!
KLM Crow Lounge AMS – HUGE lounge with something for everyone!
Worst Airline Experiences of 2013:
Downgraded by US Airways/United During IRROPS – Business Class to Economy despite an open seat on the United Flight in Business
British Airways B747-400 Premium Economy – AVOID AVOID AVOID! This hard product is outdated!
Alitalia Business Class FCO – LAX – My LEAST favorite airline to fly long haul business class with.
Best Hotels of 2013
Taba Heights Marriott Red Sea Resort Egypt – Safe, secure, and PURE beauty! Customer service that is truly legendary!
Walnut Creek Marriott – May not be the best hotel, but the staff make this place unforgettable!
Best Credit Card Bonuses I took advantage of in 2013:
Best thing I learned in 2013
How to get Barclay to reconsider your credit card application – Just because they say No or Pending doesn’t mean they will not make a deal with you to get your next Barclay card approved!
2013 was a busy year for me, I ended the year with AA Platinum and only Delta Silver, but am not concerned about my status as many credit cards offer great benefits that match low level elite status. So that first bag still won’t cost me and priority boarding is within reach. Sure my upgrades in 2013 will not be as frequent, but if my long haul travel continues to be on points instead of revenue tickets (like most of 2013), then I will be flying business most likely anyways, because I rarely use my points for economy class tickets. As far as hotel programs are concerned, I enter 2013 with Marriott Platinum and Hilton Gold status.
Overall, 2013 was a great year! My goal for 2014: Continue traveling, blogging, sharing experiences, and bringing my readers the best deals and most important airline news in 2014!