Better late than never – what I’m doing now to improve my travel
Simple Travel Strategies
I am slow sometimes. But slow is better than stubborn, right? When it comes to travel, I’m not often the trailblazer. I’m a curmudgeon at some things. I still have no plans to check into TSA PreCheck, Global Entry, Clear, whatever comes next, etc. But with some simple travel strategies, I’ve turned the corner. There are only a few here.
Mobile boarding passes
I’ve loved paper boarding passes for a long time. In general, I don’t like to fiddle with my phone too much, so mobile boarding passes were not my bag. But over time, I had less need to visit the check-in at the airport. In most cases, sticking to a paper boarding pass was the only reason to go there. And TSA hasn’t asked me for a boarding pass in a long time. Show your boarding pass once by phone at the boarding gate and that’s it? Sounds good.
Delta Sky Clubs
I didn’t avoid Sky Clubs on purpose. But judging by where I live and travel, I almost never encounter them. This changed a little last year. Using Amex Platinum, I got access to one of the BOS Sky clubs. The lounge was small but had a lot more food and drink than other domestic airline lounges. And the ATL Concourse B Sky Club literally takes it to another level. I liked the high ceilings throughout, in addition to the spacious, open seating. Superb views, coffee shops and restaurants were available, it would seem, at every turn. The living room artfully creates the illusion that you do not feel crowded, although completely occupied. Are you listening, Amex?
Elite airline status
I fully admit that I am a tourist when it comes to airline status. In general, this is not what I focus on. Until I achieved Executive Platinum status with American Airlines last year, more than a decade ago I had no meaningful airline status other than United 1K.
I’m enjoying the taste of status right now. In particular, I was surprised by my high success rate in getting an upgrade on premium bookings. But the additional rewards and phone support were also outstanding.
I don’t belong to it all the time and I know it. But sensibly, periodically gaining airline status is something I’ll probably think again.
Amex Fine Hotels & Resorts
With the Platinum card update a few years ago, Amex made me think again about Fine Hotels & Resorts. I have heard about this for years and know that some people like to maximize it. But before the $200 Platinum Credit came along, I didn’t want to spend real time on heart rate. I have since enjoyed the mystery of using this loan in properties that I should have tried years ago.
I have come full circle and I am now considering staying at Fine Hotels & Resorts on a paid booking basis. without Platinum advantage. The Amex strategy is clearly working for me. I know that other banks have their own versions of FHR, but I haven’t tried them yet. Maybe they will give me a reason to do it in the future!
Let’s Forget About Fuel Loyalty Programs for a Little Bit
I refuse fuel loyalty programs. The simplicity that comes with it was refreshing. Mindless filling at Wawa or the convenient Sam’s Club, where I know the prices are reasonably competitive, has outpaced Kroger Fuel Points and other stacks involved. I haven’t been drowning in fuel points lately and otherwise have no interest in achieving more with gift card raffles. I think I’ll be back, but right now it’s a treat.
Easy Travel Strategies – Conclusion
These are just a few simple travel strategies that I have slowly mastered and I look forward to hearing from you in the comments. None of them are cutting edge, and maybe that’s the whole point. Taking certain angles at my own pace worked optimally. Taking on everything at once and at once can be overwhelming and lead to unforced errors. Indeed, I do not believe in multitasking – at least in my situation. I will continue to consider all possibilities and strike when I see fit. Slowly smoothly, smoothly quickly.
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