Showing posts from February, 2018

Did ANA raise their award co-pays?

UPDATE March 2018: I have my answer. ANA's fuel surcharge is tied to the Singapore Kerosene (i.e., jet fuel) price index and that's been quite high lately.

I've been doing a bunch of test bookings for a friend and it seems like ANA has recently raised the price of the co-pays on their award tickets. Low and Regular season Economy tickets now have co-pays around the US$250 mark. When I search for itineraries similar to those in receipts I have from previous bookings, the prices are $100 higher than a year+ ago. 
Low vs. Regular season are both now $250Partner redemptions (e.g., United) are also in the $250 range, and also show a $100 increaseJFK to Haneda and Narita are both $250Booking onward to another city (e.g., booking JFK to Okayama via Tokyo) is $250 In other words, there's no trick I can find to get around these new fees. I've been scouring the various forms and haven't found any information or announcements about the increase. This significantly devalue…

First sighting of this year's Business Class fare deals to Europe

As I've written about before, many airlines offer Business Class fare deals between the US and Europe during the summer when business-related travel is low and vacation travel is at its peak.
UPDATE (7/2018): Trip Report here! We really want to attend a college friend's 50th Birthday party this summer in Poland, so I've had SkyScanner and Google Flights tracking fares and emailing me with any deals that show up. Based on previous years, I was expecting to actually purchase the flight sometime in April, but I got an alert last night (mid February!) that Singapore Airlines has a great deal on their direct service from New York to Frankfurt – many dates around or below the $2000 mark! Keep in mind that an Economy ticket on the same flight is currently $1578 (and competing airlines' flights are all north of $1400).

I bought our tickets with my Chase Sapphire Reserve, and as with my SAS flight last summer, I'll earn $300-ish worth of Chase and United points for this …

Testing out modern merino wool: can it lighten your load?

Lately my social media feed has been full of ads for high-tech Merino wool clothes. I'd honestly just ignored them until our last trip to Japan. The biking leg of that trip meant that there was very little room for clothing beyond our cycling gear. So when one of these wool ads promised shirts, socks, and underwear that only need to be washed every couple of weeks, I was intrigued, skeptical, and a bit grossed out all at once. The lure of all that extra space in my bags was too much to ignore so I decided to buy several different pieces and test them out at home and on our recent trip to Mexico.
👕 Shirts  Short answer: enthusiastic YES

While I do love a suitcase full of cute shirts, I feel like some combination of Steve Jobs' fashion, millennial "normcore", and the recent minimalism fad have made it absolutely fine to wear the same look every day, provided it's clean and not stinky. Since shirts comprise a fairly large percentage of my suitcase when I travel, …