Change In Plans: I’m Flying Back To The US After 15 Hours In Fiji

Filed Under: Fiji Airways, Travel

I’m used to taking crazy quick trips, though usually that’s by design. Well, this trip ranks up there on the list of crazy trips, though unfortunately quite unintentionally.

I just wrapped up my first day in Fiji, and was supposed to spend two more days here before continuing to Auckland on Fiji Airways, and then returning to Los Angeles on Air Tahiti Nui via Tahiti.

In the back of my mind I always think about how long it would take me to get back to the US if there were an emergency. Well, that has finally happened, and I think I realized I’m in one of the tougher places for getting back to the US on a moment’s notice.

Unfortunately something horrible happened, so I’m headed back to the US right away. Usually I can use miles & points to figure out a creative routing home, even when time is of the essence.

In Fiji there’s exactly one daily flight to the US mainland, and that’s the flight to Los Angeles on Fiji Airways. There was no award space on the flight, so I booked a last minute ticket just three hours before departure. An economy ticket would have been ~$1,300, while a business class ticket was ~$2,000, so I sprung for business class.

I enjoyed my 15 hours in Fiji immensely, and look forward to returning. In the meantime, I’m likely one of the few people to have traveled from Los Angeles to Fiji and then back to Los Angeles the same day.


I apologize in advance if posts are more limited than usual over the next few days.

  1. Lucky,
    Sorry to hear something bad came up. Best wishes from my wife and I to you and your family (assuming it’s a family emergency)


  2. Ben,
    I hope everything is OK, in the meantime forget about us. No one doubts your dedication to this blog and no one will if you take a few days off. Please take as much time as you need and I hope everything turns out to be OK.

  3. Prayers are with you. Take time off; your readership understands and wants you to be there for family and friends.

  4. Ben, our prayers are with you. Guessing sucks! Hope Tiffany, your family, everyone is or will be ok.

  5. Always one of my worst fears that something horrible happens back home when I’m on the road working or traveling for fun. Had that happen two months ago. The flight home was awful. My best to you and your family.

  6. I hope you can find some comfort from your friends and family at this time. Don’t worry about us. -we’ll be here when you come back. Take care.

  7. My prayers and thoughts are with you, your family, and friends. I hope everything is OK in the end.

  8. Oh no! I hope everything turns out okay. Love and prayers and good energy with hopes that whatever it is, is resolved quickly!

  9. Wishing you clarity, peace and calm in your current situation. I hope you and everyone else is dealing with the situation as best as can be expected given the circumstances.

  10. Hope all is alright, Ben. I know nothing is more stressful than hearing bad news when away from family.

  11. Ben, very sorry to hear. Thoughts, prayers, and best wishes to you and yours. Your fans are thinking of you.

  12. Oh, no! I really hope the horrible news isn’t *that* horrible, but thoughts are with you.

    Don’t worry about the blog – you have some great guest authors who many of us enjoy reading (sorry, haters), and “real life” simply has to come first.

    Good luck and as you take care of things, don’t forget to take care of YOU.

  13. So sorry to hear about whatever it is that happened. This type of thing always concerns me some when we leave for an extended trip. Hope things turn out as best they can.

  14. Don’t Worry about us Ben. We understand. I can write posts if you want. Anything to help!

  15. I hope you make it in time. My father passed away recently and luckily I had landed in london that morning from NYC, so I was able to go on the first flight to Lisbon in the morning. Everything happens ‘for us’ in 18-36 hours and for the past 6 months, every time I got on a plane, I always did the math. I was grateful I was home and be there for everyone. Hope nothing as bad happened to you.

  16. Oh no! Prayers going out that everything works out for you. Let us readers know if there is anything we can to to help. You have a lot of loyal fans rooting for you.

  17. Hope everything is okay! Take good care of yourself and take some time off if need be. My thoughts and prayers go out to you!

  18. My best thoughts are with you, and I wish you all the strength and compassion required to deal with the challenges ahead. Don’t worry about us. We’ll still be here when you choose to return.

  19. Oh no! What will the readers do if you stop hawking credit cards for “a few days?” We are devoted to helping your amass your fortune from credit card app referral income.

  20. Really nice reading all of the comments here. You’ve got some great readers, Ben. Keeping your family in my thoughts and prayers.

  21. Best wishes to you and your family during these difficult times!
    Safe travels, hope everything goes well!

  22. My one big concern when I travel is that an emergency arises and I need to get home ASAP. You have a great blog, but the blog can take a rest. I hope that every thing is OK.

  23. Thanks so much, guys. The kind words really mean a lot. There are a lot of good people out there on the internet!

  24. Ben/Lucky… We are your loyal readers, discovering your blog a few years back. You passion has inspired me so much to plan travelling with miles & points and we are currently on our first family mini-RTW trip from North America to Australia. Yes, it finally happens!

    Thank you & best wishes to you Ben. You will be on our daily thoughts!

  25. Prayers and good thoughts sent your way. I hope your troubles quickly resolve. All the best, Mary

  26. So sorry to read your message. We send our thoughts and, as others have already written, we’ll be waiting for you when you return.

  27. I hope things turn out to be better than you expect. Leave the blog alone for now. Family and friends come first. Your loyal readers will all still be here when you return. Sending prayers and positive vibes your way.

  28. Sorry to learn of an emergency that forced a sudden trip home. Best of luck and you are in my prayers.

  29. Sorry to hear about this and I hope everything works out. Please don’t forget that this situation takes priority over cranking out posts on your blog.

  30. Lucky, I think I’ve posted exactly once but read your blog every day. I had to post when I read this to let you know our thoughts and prayers are with you. Hope everything turns out okay.

  31. Ben, my thoughts are with you. Hope everything is or turns out okay.

    Glad you were able to get a flight out. Two grand in Biz is not bad last minute.

    What a bummer on your AA flight out of LAX. The Lucky side is that now you don’t have that 3 hour drive.

  32. Ben – I hope that the emergency resolves itself shortly.

    I’m so happy that you were able to get on that flight, and didn’t have to wait another 24 hours.

  33. I’m so sorry that you’re going through a difficult time. I hope everything turns out well for you.

  34. Hope that whatever emergency it is, that you will get through it and that everything is okay. Your readers are rooting for you and keeping you and your family in our prayers.

  35. My thoughts are with you Lucky. I hope that you get through this and everything is ok. I have been reading this blog for about a year and your writing has helped me through some of the most challenging situations I have experienced. I am a total aviation nut (not really miles and points, but lots of other things) and I enjoy reading your posts. It’s like my therapy. When I’m down, I’ll read a good ol’ EY or EK review, and it will immediately soothe my feelings. So I just wanted to say thank you for how you’ve helped me become a happier human being. Once again, I do hope you get through this issue, and I give you hugs!!

  36. I know how you must feel. Years ago I got terrible news while in Bonnaire. If it is family related, one could move mountains to get home quickly. Positive thoughts for you 🙂

  37. Ben, I have been reading your blog since you were in college. Our thoughts and prayers are with you. Take the time you need away from the blog until things get more normal.

  38. You got us curious now about what happened but it doesn’t seem good. I’m sorry!
    hang n’ there! one breath at’ time!
    wishing the best outcome possible.

  39. Unexpected life changing painful emergencies ground us to a halt. Take this time for you. I am really happy you were able to get a flight so quickly…and we will all be waiting for you, when you are ready to reamerge.x

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