Houston to LAX – Delta- #FlightDeal or #MileageRun – Nov 2014 – $202 R/T – 3.8 CPM – #SkyTeam

This is a quick turnaround mileage run from Houston to LAX via Atlanta in Delta Economy on a Friday afternoon with a red-eye return in less than 24 hours. Not many dates available with the lowest fare by other dates and/or trip lengths can be had for a bit more.

Sample Departure Date: Fri, Nov 14, 2014

Sample Return Date: Fri, Nov 14, 2014 (arrive Nov 15)

Airline: Delta

CPM:  3.8 CPM 

Total Base Mileage Earned: 5,256 CPM

Routing: IAH-ATL-LAX-ATL-IAH

Total Roundtrip Fare: $202

 

iah-lax-mrun-11152014

 

Portland (PDX) to Fort Lauderdale – United – #FlightDeal or #MileageRun – Jan 2015 – $292 R/T – #StarAlliance

One night mileage run or a maybe just a mid-week getaway to South Florida? Other dates or longer stays are available for around $315.

Sample Departure Date: Tues, Jan 13, 2015

Sample Return Date: Wed, Jan 14, 2015

Airline: United

CPM:  5.3 CPM 

Total Base Mileage Earned: 5,474 Base Miles

Routing:PDX-DEN-FLL-IAH-PDX

Total Roundtrip Fare: $292

pdx-fll-jan132015

Sunday Was My Proof for the Naysayers That Airline Status Matters

For a lot of travelers, the point of flying is to get from Point A to Point B as quickly and as cheaply as possible. But for those of us travel hackers/mile hoarders/road warriors,  it’s much more than that. While my friends and family don’t criticize my obsession with miles and airline status, I’m sure there are those who find the hobby a complete waste of time and money. But this last weekend on my return to Dallas from Florida via Orlando (on July 4th weekend) was a prime example of why airline status is worth the effort and bit of cash.

While I’m only the lowly Premier Silver with United Airlines, the basic perks of simply Silver will save you all kinds of headaches. I’m sure most of you have been to Orlando as it’s one of the top travel destinations int the world. If you’ve been, you also know that it’s a very congested city due to all the attractions. And while Orlando International (MCO) is very well designed, it still doesn’t mean short lines and short waits for the average traveler. Our flight was an early one on this Sunday morning and while expected a crowd, I thought our pre-dawn departure would spare us slightly. Well, I was clearly surprised.

We approached the United ticketing counters to check one of our large bags at 5:00 AM. There were a minimum of 150-200 folks in line for United ticketing. Guess how many were in line at Premier Access? Two. Our bag was promptly checked in 2 minutes and we were on our way to security. Our next perk wasn’t directly related to airline status but to our Global Entry enrollment with the additional perk of TSA Precheck. That previous line at ticketing almost seemed like a breeze when we approached the TSA lines. There must have been 400-500 people in line, routing through ONE main queue line! Orlando’s has one central terminal with an “A” and “B” ticketing side. The PreCheck side is closer to “A” but we approached from “B” and both sides use the same TSA lines. We hurried over to the PreCheck side and were delighted when we only found 3 people in line for PreCheck! We were on our way to the concourse tram in just a couple of minutes and we easily avoided spending 45 minutes+ in line for TSA.

We skirted off for a quick coffee and onto our gate. We had plenty of time to move at our leisure thanks to our previous perks. We would have been far more rushed had we not had those perks. And to top it all off, we were upgraded to First on our IAH bound flight!

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Of course, this journey was an example of things going very much in our favor due to Elite status. However, the day wasn’t perfect as United did leave my checked bag behind in IAH and it was delayed. However, they did deliver it to my house just a few hours later. There were a few factors that did help make our experience even easier:

  • We were departing early on a Sunday morning
  • Orlando on a weekend means very few business travelers
  • Orlando is not a United hub/focus city, equaling small number of Elite travelers
  • Low time and day for Elite travelers and TSA PreCheck travelers

So for those of you newbie or light travelers who think that Elite status is just a waste of time, re-think about inserting status into your travel and miles strategy. It’s saving a ton in baggage fees alone! And don’t forget to do you research on status matches, it doesn’t hurt to politely ask!

 

Weekend in Hong Kong? 4.7 CPM – Air Canada – #MileageRun or #FlightDeal – IAH to HKG – Sep to Nov 2014 – $863 R/T

Great fare to Hong Kong  from Houston, showing lots of availability from mid-September through November 2014. Limited availability in latter half of November.Lowest fares appear to be for Sunday through Tuesday departures.

One night turnaround available for you mileage runners or longer stays for a Hong Kong getaway! Be sure to watch fare classes on Air Canada operated flights as the mileage accrual rates vary. This one won’t last!

Sample Departure Date: Sun, Nov 2, 2014

Sample Return Date: Tue, Nov 4, 2014

Airline: Air Canada

CPM: 4.7 CPM

Total Base Mileage Earned: 18,146 miles

Routing: IAH-YYZ-HKG-YYZ-IAH

Total Roundtrip Fare: $863

 

iah hkg nov 2

 

 

4.5 CPM – United – #MileageRun or #FlightDeal – PDX to FLL – Sep 5 to 6- Weekend – $289 R/T

This is an excellent fare for a transcontinental jaunt from from cool Portland to sunny Florida. Multiple dates available but first weekend in September only requires a one night stay for you mileage runners. Fare available in the reverse direction as well ($289 R/T) with but mileage accrual is greater originating in PDX.

Sample Departure Date: Sep 5, 2014

Sample Return Date: Sep 6, 2014

Airline: United

CPM: 4.5 CPM

Total Base Mileage Earned: 6,277 miles

Routing: PDX-EWR-FLL-IAH-PDX

Total Roundtrip Fare: $285

pdx fll sep 5

 

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5.1 CPM – United – #MileageRun or #FlightDeal – FLL to PDX – Sep 5 to 6- Weekend – $289 R/T

This is an excellent fare for a transcontinental jaunt from sunny Florida to cool Portland. Multiple dates available but first weekend in September only requires a one night stay for you mileage runners. Fare available in the reverse direction as well ($285 R/T) connecting through EWR for an even great mileage accrual.

Sample Departure Date: Sep 5, 2014

Sample Return Date: Sep 6, 2014

Airline: United

CPM: 5.1 CPM

Total Base Mileage Earned: 5,570 miles

Routing: FLL-IAH-PDX-IAH-FLL

Total Roundtrip Fare: $289

fll pdx sep 5

 

 Need a hotel on your visit to Portland?

Save an extra 25% on hotels with PACKUP. Valid 5/19 – 5/26/14.