So, where am I headed? Guess here!

Over the weekend I posted about the three upcoming mega-trips I have planned. While I was planning on making them “mystery trips” and only revealing where I was headed while at the airport embarking on that particular trip, all three of my blog readers checked in and mentioned this would cause them sleep loss, and that’s not something I want to do to them.

Well, this afternoon I’m in the process of finalizing the last aspect of my last trip that’s not fully confirmed, so while I wait for the official confirmation, let’s have a little contest and see who can guess what I have planned.

Like I said in the original post, I’m looking at three huge trips (either in terms of distance covered or sheer awesomeness). Before you guess, here are a few clues:

  • I haven’t reviewed any of the airlines I’m going to be flying on the longhaul segments (you can see a full list of airlines I’ve reviewed here)
  • My first trip is really two roundtrips (of sorts) which are “nested.” That means I’m flying from the US to somewhere, picking up a separate roundtrip ticket from that location, and returning back to the US on that original ticket.
  • My second trip is really four nested one-way tickets
  • My third ticket is a “simple” roundtrip ticket
  • Eight longhaul segments are in first class, five longhaul segments are in business class, and three regional segments are in business class (or something like that). Hopefully the clue there is that they better be some darn good business class products, or I wouldn’t be redeeming miles for them!

Anyway, those are all the details I’ll provide for now. Feel free to take a guess, and be as descriptive as you’d like. It’s not just about guessing the airlines, but also about guessing the destinations, routes, etc.

Feel free to guess until midnight eastern on Sunday (the 13th), at which point I’ll reveal the “winner.” The winner will receive some sort of prize that I can get together for their preferred loyalty program (within reason — I don’t have any Air China PhoenixMiles prizes, unfortunately!). It’ll be more than a drink chit but less than a free ticket. Since this is pretty complicated (and there probably won’t be an “obvious” winner) I’ll do the judging to the best of my ability. Lastly, if you know what trips I’m taking (because I’ve told you or for whatever reason), you’re disqualified.

Though hopefully the real prize here will be learning some new gem award redemptions. 😉

Filed Under: Awards, Travel
  1. Dammit, Mark beat me to the Emirates guess. That said, I’ll also take a stab at the nesting location. I’ll say US – Seoul then taking off from there on the second round trip…perhaps to Dubai on that Emirates award?

  2. I’m thinking Middle East/Africa, too. You’ve mentioned a few times about expanding your horizons, and it seems your travel has mostly been confined to Asia and Europe.

    Maybe the regional product is in South African? A stop at Victoria Falls perhaps? Or maybe you’ll go the Oneworld route and redeem for some Royal Jordanian regional business class to Dubai or Muscat? Or even El Al to Tel Aviv?

  3. I’m taking a wild guess here.

    Korean Air from IAD to ICN (round trip)
    South Africa from IAD to JCB
    Emirates from JCB to DXB

    So far….

  4. I am goig to guess… MIA or JFK to GIG or GRU on TAM or possibly COPA, through their panama routing 🙂

  5. The two round trips: the US RT will be on LH’s new F arrangement (A380?) probably from California to Germany. The nested ticket will be Germany to Dubai on Emirates.

    One trip will be to Buenos Aires on Lan. If it isn’t to Buenos Aires, I definitely think somewhere in S. Ameria like Brazil.

    The other trip (probably all the one way tickets) will be Australia? On Quantas?

  6. The one to Australia will involve Qantas (regional business?) and V Australia (hence long haul business)?

  7. I see a trip to Australia with Qantas and/or V Australia (have to experience the one decent way to redeem skypesos)

  8. Taking a couple guesses here….

    V Australia in Business class LAX-SYD
    Jet Airways in First class JFK-DEL
    Alitalia in the new Business Class seats JFK-FCO
    Air New Zealand Business class AKL-SYD
    TAM Business class JFK-GRU
    SAS Business Class to ORD-CPH
    US Airways on the A332 Envoy PHL-MUC

    I know you wrote a TR about Continental, but you never wrote one about their international business class product, so here goes….

    Continental business class IAH-FRA

  9. Easter Island via BA, Santiago, *and* Lima on LAN. Probably leaving from LAX and possibly returning to JFK to maximize the ‘experience’.

    Now if you manage to use points for your stay in Hanga Roa, I’ll truly be impressed!

  10. Jonathan
    BA First (LHR-LAX)

    I totally forgot about that… That should not qualify, because Lucky mentioned this in previous blog posts!!!


  11. Ethihad or Emirates to Dubai, a hop from threr to maybe china or Malaysia or Vietnam and then korean air somewhere?

  12. Dubai in Emirates F is definitely one of them, and I’m going to guess that is also your nested trip, with your first flight being DXB-JFK.

  13. First Trip
    JFK-DBX Emirates (Roundtrip)
    DBX-DEL Jet Airways (Roundtrip)

    Second Trip
    MIA-EZE on LAN
    EZE-SCL on LAN
    GRU-MIA on TAM

    Third Trip
    IDA -JNB (Roundtrip)

  14. Almost positive you’ll be going to Dubai and Australia using Emirates and Qantas.

    I know it’s not a very detailed guess and basically everyone above me already said those, but it’s a guess nonetheless.

    Dubai and Australia sound awesome! I’m saving up miles for trips to these place myself. Have fun!!

  15. I don’t see Virgin on your list, so I’m going to guess that you’re going to that area of the world. But you’ve been to Australia and New Zealand. So..VA to SYD, SYD to Dubai on Emirates.

    And I’m guessing Buenos Aires on LAN.

    Lastly, I’ll say you’re going to Capetown on South African Airways too.

    And, in the spirit of barely any hints, it’s Professor Plumb in the study with the revolver.

  16. 1. US Airways Envoy Suites to MUC, South African to Johannesburg.

    2. Emirates first JFK to DXB, Emirates regional business to Muscat, Oman Air to Frankfurt to LHR then British Airways back to the US

    3. LAN to Santiago and Auckland in first, then Air Tahiti Nui to Papeete.

    Also, do your clues apply to the domestic flights out of Tampa and to the international gateways or do those not count?

  17. Definitely one trip is to South America on TAM. My guess is that rather than going to Brazil, as there might not be time to get a visa, you could be flying to Buenos Aires, probably connecting in Rio.

  18. Not quite enough info for me to predict destinations, so I will just predict airlines. Also, you didn’t say if some of the longhaul segments would be on the same airline so if I run out, that’s why…First I am going to list the possibilities…

    Here are some possibilities for 8 Longhaul F Segments some combination of:
    1. EK F on the 380
    2. QF F (probably on the 380)
    3. EY F
    4. Jet Airways F (although that is the same as Thai/Turkish so maybe not)
    5. TAM F
    6. AF F (but I don’t think you have access to that unless you are a Flying Blue elite, which I can’t imagine you are, so probably not

    5 Longhaul C Segments:
    1. Air New Zealand C (would make sense if you also flew QF at some point)
    2. LAN C
    3. US Airways Envoy
    4. SA C
    5. VA C

    If I had to assemble trips it would be something like:

    Trip 1:
    Roundtrip on EK F From JFK-DXB
    Roundtrip on EY F from AUH-? (The minimal distance between DXB and AUH wouldn’t stop you from trying a new product and I think you can use NH miles on EY)
    There clearly needs to be another flight in F here.

    Trip 2:
    PHL-LHR on US Envoy
    LHR-HKG on NZ C
    HKG-AKL on NZ C
    SYD-LAX on QF F 388 (maybe SYD/BNE to DFW for the novelty of QF to DFW, but I doubt you can resist the pull of F on the A380)

    Trip 3:
    US-South America (probably to Easter Island or something) on LAN C
    South America-US on TAM F (the order of these could be switched)

  19. Buenos Aires on LAN, staying at the Park Hyatt (I was going to guess Easter Island, but rhere’s no way you’d actually pay for a hotel). You’ll also stay in Santiago, where you’ll start the trip, as you mentioned in a post a little while back.

    Qatar Airways to Muscat, staying at the Intercontinental Al Bustan. You’ll also work Dubai in there. (or it could be Emirates – what the hell do I know?). Nah, everyone else is saying Emirates. I’ll stick with Qatar.

    Aeroflot to Moscow, which is how you’ll finally get rid of those Delta miles.

  20. Sorry – i’m amending that.

    1) LAN to Santiago, then onward to Buenos Aires, including time at the Park Hyatt in BA.

    2) Emirates to Dubai, onward to Muscat, Oman, to stay at the nicest of the Intercontinentals, the Al Bustan.

    3) Aeroflot to Moscow.

    carry on.

  21. Eightblack totally gave it away on FT. CX from Hong Kong is what he said, but I can’t remember the destination.

  22. I’d guess LAN F to Buenos aires. Then onto Sydney w a short RT to AKL. Then to SIN. From there it’s either JNB on SAfrican or DXB on Emirates. Maybe home via china or even ICN?

    That’s my guess

  23. My guess is that you’re trying out ANA new first class product. The hard part is guessing where you are going. Maybe the middle east? DXB?

  24. WIth regards to destinations, here are my thoughts:


    With regards to airlines:

    -V Australia

  25. Alright so for airlines I’m thinking for the 13 long haul segments:
    – Qantas First (2 segments)
    – Emirates First (4 segments)
    – Korean First (2 segments)

    – LAN Business (2 segments)
    – Air Canada Business
    – Air France Business
    – Virgin Australia Business

    And in terms of trips:

    First Trip:
    Qantas First to Australia then Emirates First to/from Europe

    Second trip:
    Four one-ways:
    – To Australia on Virgin Australia
    – To Seoul then India on Korean First
    – To Europe on Air France Business
    – Air Canada Business back to the U.S.

    Third trip:
    Simple round trip on LAN to EZE or SCL and maybe Easter Island

  26. LAN to South America, then one way tickets all the way island hopping to Australia/Pacific islands/Micronesia, KE from somewhere Australia/Fiji to Korea and back.

  27. I’m also voting LAN J to Buenos Aires for the simple selfish reason that I’m making the trip myself next month on them and would love to see what you think of them too. I’m guessing you’re flying MIA-LIM-EZE and return for 4 of your business segments.

    I’m also voting Emirates F to Dubai as one of the flights and SAA to Jo’burg as another. As for the rest, I’d need more clues. I’m looking forward to seeing where you end up!

  28. I’m guessing the other 5* Skytrax carriers,

    Malaysian, and maybe Kingfisher.

    Probably to Asia / India

    Throw in one of the nice middle eastern carriers.

    Etihad, Emma Ritz, Qatar

    Throw Dubai in the mix.

    Are you going with you significant other?

  29. Based on your later clue, I think the last segment of the second trip will be Virgin Atlantic back from Europe, not Air Canada.

  30. I’ve waited till the end to guess so and I’m gonna combine everyone else’s posts. Hope that’s not against the rules. 😉

    You posted on FT about a transit hotel at Heathrow, so I’m going to guess Virgin Atlantic (VA?) is part of the first trip. I would guess you are then flying either Etihad or even Qatar for the rest of that trip. You mentioned on the blog about booking SQ11 LAX-NRT-SIN before it was loaded as the 380, so I’m guessing that’s at least part of another trip. Since you say one trip has several one way tickets, maybe you’re returning the long way via Australia on Qantas (if they even have space). Something with an illegal routing. Then the last trip, I have no clue haha – are you trying the new US Airways Envoy Suite (I remember you posted about that as well before you booked your DL trip). Maybe Air New Zealand premium economy (oh the horror!!!)?


  31. Lucky: My understanding is that nesting is when one has an over-arching round trip from to/from one city and then takes side trips within the time of the round trip ticket. Does that violate any rules? What if there is some backtracking along the way, say going to the destination city and then doubling back to somewhere else on the itinerary and then returning to the original destination to depart? AAA-BBB-CCC-DDD (1-2 night layover) DDD-CCC–DDD (four nights) DDD-EEE-AAA. I’ve found a really good J fare to europe on sky team but don’t want to spend a lot of time in the destination city for the fare….


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