- Introduction: A Whirlwind Aeroplan Adventure
- How To Redeem Aeroplan Points Like A Pro
- Review: SAS Lounge Chicago Airport (ORD)
- Review: Austrian Business Class 777 (ORD-VIE)
- Review: Andaz Vienna Am Belvedere
- Review: SKY Lounge Vienna Airport (VIE)
- Review: Austrian Senator Lounge Vienna Airport (VIE)
- Review: Austrian Business Class A320 (VIE-FCO)
- Review: Plaza Premium Lounge Rome Airport (FCO)
- Review: Gulf Air Business Class A321LR (FCO-BAH)
- Review: Gulf Air Lounge Bahrain Airport (BAH)
- Review: Bahrain Airport Hotel (Priority Pass)
- New Bahrain Airport Terminal: What A Nifty Hub!
- Review: Gulf Air Business Class 787-9 (BAH-SIN)
- Review: Singapore Airlines SilverKris Business Lounge T3 (SIN)
- Review: Singapore Airlines Business Class 787 (SIN-SGN)
- Review: Le Saigonnais Business Lounge Ho Chi Minh City Airport (SGN)
- Review: Bamboo Airways Business Class A321neo (SGN-HAN)
- Review: VATC Sleep Pods Hanoi Airport (HAN)
- Review: Song Hong Business Lounge Hanoi Airport (HAN)
- Review: Bamboo Airways Business Class 787 (HAN-FRA)
- Review: Sheraton Frankfurt Airport (FRA)
- Review: Lufthansa Business Lounge Frankfurt (FRA)
- Review: Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge Frankfurt (FRA)
- Review: Air Canada Business Class 777 (FRA-YYZ)
- Review: Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge Toronto Transborder (YYZ)
- Review: Air Canada Business Class 787 (YYZ-MIA)
Welcome to my next trip report series, which will include business class reviews on Austrian Airlines, Gulf Air, Singapore Airlines, Bamboo Airways, and Air Canada, as well as several airport lounge and hotel reviews.
In this post:
Why I took this trip
This was a “pure” review trip, which is to say that I took this trip exclusively to review as many airlines, airport lounges, and hotels, as possible, all while minimizing my time away from home. I know many OMAAT readers enjoy the reviews on the blog, so as a new parent I’m trying to keep that going while being away from home as little as possible.
Air Canada Aeroplan is my favorite frequent flyer program, and I particularly appreciate how many unique airline partners the program has. My goal with this trip was to maximize Aeroplan points for a routing on as many interesting airlines as possible.
I hadn’t been to Southeast Asia since before the pandemic, so I kind of set Singapore as my “destination,” and wanted to see how creatively I could get there and back. The beauty of Aeroplan is that you can route from the United States to Asia via Europe, so there really are some great award possibilities.
I plan on doing another one of these trips again soon, covering many of the products I didn’t manage to get to on this trip (including the Etihad Airbus A350, Singapore Airlines Boeing 737 MAX 8, LOT Polish Boeing 787, Lufthansa Boeing 787, and Vistara Boeing 787).
The airlines I flew on this trip
I booked this trip as two one-way Aeroplan awards, traveling a total distance of 23,557 miles.
Specifically, I used Aeroplan’s award chart between North America and the Pacific, which is distance based. Relevant to this trip:
- A one-way business class award covering a distance of 7,500-11,000 miles costs 87,500 points
- A one-way business class award covering a distance of 11,000+ miles costs 115,000 points
Let me remind everyone that earning Air Canada Aeroplan points is easy. Aeroplan is 1:1 transfer partners with Amex Membership Rewards, Capital One, and Chase Ultimate Rewards. On top of that, there’s the Aeroplan® Credit Card (review) in the United States, which offers a great bonus and some unique perks.
My outbound journey covered a total of 12,948 miles across six segments. I booked the following in business class for 115,000 Air Canada Aeroplan points plus $112.82 in taxes & fees:
1/05 OS66 Chicago to Vienna departing 4:20PM arriving 8:20AM (+1 day)
1/07 OS501 Vienna to Rome departing 7:55AM arriving 9:30AM
1/07 GF26 Rome to Bahrain departing 11:10AM arriving 6:35PM
1/07 GF165 Bahrain to Singapore departing 11:50PM arriving 12:25PM (+1 day)
1/08 SQ186 Singapore to Ho Chi Minh City departing 5:30PM arriving 6:40PM
1/08 QH256 Ho Chi Minh City to Hanoi departing 10:10PM arriving 12:20AM (+1 day)
My return journey covered a total of 10,608 miles across three segments. I booked the following in business class for 87,500 Aeroplan points plus $150.11 in taxes & fees:
1/09 QH73 Hanoi to Frankfurt departing 9:40AM arriving 5:15PM
1/10 AC841 Frankfurt to Toronto departing 9:45AM arriving 12:30PM
1/10 AC1204 Toronto to Miami departing 6:30PM arriving 9:40PM
Seriously, how awesome is this routing?! Many are probably wondering how you go about booking something like this, so I’ll cover that in the next post, since that’s a big topic in and of itself.
In addition to flight reviews, you can expect reviews of the following lounges (I’ve already reviewed the Amex Centurion Lounge Miami and American Admirals Club Washington, which I visited during my positioning flights to Chicago):
- The SAS Lounge Chicago Airport (ORD)
- The SKY Lounge Vienna Airport (VIE)
- The Austrian Senator Lounge Vienna Airport (VIE)
- The Plaza Premium Lounge Rome Airport (FCO)
- The Gulf Air Lounge Bahrain Airport (BAH)
- The Bahrain Airport Hotel (BAH), which offers sleeping pods and massages to Priority Pass members
- The Singapore Airlines Business Lounge Singapore (SIN)
- Le Saigonnais Lounge Ho Chi Minh City Airport (SGN)
- The Song Hong Business Lounge Hanoi Airport (HAN)
- The Lufthansa Business Lounge Frankfurt Airport (FRA)
- The Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge Frankfurt Airport (FRA)
- The Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge Toronto Airport Transborder (YYZ)
The hotels I stayed at on this trip
While I traveled for nearly a week, I only spent two nights in actual hotels. At the beginning of my trip, I had an overnight in Vienna, and I decided to check out the Andaz Vienna. While the cash rate would have been around 200 Euro, I had a Category 1-4 free night certificate expiring in the coming weeks, so I decided to redeem that. That worked out perfectly, as this is a Category 4 World of Hyatt property.
While not a proper hotel, during my overnight at Hanoi Airport I decided to book the VATC Sleep Pod Hanoi Airport for the night, since it seemed more convenient than trekking into the city. That was… an experience.
Lastly, at the tail end of the trip I had a night in Frankfurt, and I decided to book the Sheraton Frankfurt Airport. I recently reviewed the connected Marriott Frankfurt Airport, so I was curious to see how the Sheraton compares nowadays. I booked this with a Marriott Bonvoy free night award, given that the cash rate at the hotel was quite high.
I’m happy to be getting 2023 off to a good start when it comes to review trips, with an amazing redemption no less. I redeemed a total of 202,500 Aeroplan points for an incredible journey covering 23,000+ miles of flying, across all kinds of airlines.
Stay tuned for reviews of business class on Austrian Airlines, Gulf Air, Singapore Airlines, Bamboo Airways, and Air Canada, plus lots of lounge reviews and a couple of hotel reviews. I’ll also be dedicating a post to talking about how exactly I went about booking this itinerary, given that it’s probably a mystery to many.
Thanks for reading, and stay tuned!