It might not come as a massive shock to you that I travel a lot. I mean, even if you are new to my blog, ‘Travel for a Living’ is probably giving it away just a tad. As part of my job, I’ve spent the best part of the last decade travelling the length and width of Europe (and beyond, like those trips to Israel). And to make the most of these travels, I’ve signed up to quite a few frequent traveller programmes over the years. But should you? Well, to help you decide, let me tell you which ones I’ve signed up for. And most importantly, if these frequent traveller programmes are really worth it.
As you might know, I am a frequent flyer on British Airways. And one of the perks of my silver status is access to the airport lounge, whenever I fly. So, travelling back from New York was no exception obviously. We’ve been to the lounge at JFK a couple of times before and it didn’t really make my Top 5 if I am honest. However, they have recently undergone a massive refurbishment. Meaning I was quite excited to check it out as we headed back to London after our recent week in New York. And what can I say. The new BA lounge is way better than the old one. Curious? Let me take you inside the British Airways Lounge at JFK airport for a quick nose around.
Saying the old lounge was no good is moaning at a very high level. There wasn’t anything really wrong with it. It was just a bit knackered. But not the worst BA lounge I’ve ever been in.
Let’s talk travel perks a little. There are lots of frequent traveller programmes out there and I will shortly publish another post about all the programmes I use. But for now, I want to focus on the loyalty programme of British Airways. And the question whether or not the British Airways Executive Club is worth signing up for.
If you are a regular to my blog, you are probably well aware, that I have Silver Status in the British Airways Executive Club, the BA frequent traveller programme. But what does this mean? And how did I get there?
Seems this year is a series of firsts when it comes to flying. I’ve extended my knowledge of different airlines quite a bit. Flying LOT Polish Airlines for the first time at the start of the year. Followed by my first ever Lauda Flight back from Vienna. More recently my first two flights with Vueling. And today I’d like to share with you my experience of flying Hop for the first time.
Hop is one of those airlines that I vaguely heard about before, but I never really used them before. Probably because they mainly do inland flights within France. And I don’t travel to France that often (yes, I know this does sound a bit weird, given that I just returned from a holiday in France a couple of days before the trip). However, I did have a business trip to Marseille and Toulouse. And whilst the flights to Marseille and back from Toulouse were both British Airways, the inland flight between Marseille and Toulouse was operated by Hop (although it was actually booked on Air France and we only realised afterwards that it would be operated by Hop).
So, what can you expect, when flying Hop for the first time?
How about, I just tell you about my first flight on Hop?
I am a frequent flyer and am boarding at least one flight pretty much every single week of the year (six flights in seven days might well be my personal record). As such the whole booking, check in and boarding process has pretty much become second nature and I don’t lose much sleep over it. That being said, every now and then I will find myself on board a new airline that I have not flown with before. And although the overall process is the same for all airlines, it is the finer points that change. Such as hand luggage allowance or on-board catering. As I was recently flying Vueling for the first time (and in case you wondered, it is pronounced something like ‘Welling’, not quite how I would have pronounced it… but then, I don’t speak any Spanish), let me tell you what to expect flying Vueling.
We’ve just come back from a week in San Francisco. And what shall I say, it was amazing. We’ve been looking forward to the San Francisco trip ever since we booked it. If only it wasn’t for the rather long flight from London to San Francisco. I mean an 8-hour flight from London to New York is bad enough. But an eleven-hour flight from London to San Francisco? How on earth were we meant to survive that. With Mr T being bored to death after about two hours, I was preparing for the worst. And since this was our first 11-hour flight, I also didn’t know what to expect in terms of food. Would it be one meal shortly after take-off and then starve to death until the end of the flight? Or would it be a main meal and a snack? Two main meals? Eleven hours is a long flight, especially if you are stuck in a small metal tube with nothing to do than watch movies and eat. But enough of the introduction, let me tell you what to expect on an eleven hour flight in economy.
Although Eurowings isn’t my usual Go To airline, for certain routes it is the only option I have or the more convenient route / time. So every now and then I end up booking Eurowings for flights to and from London. Like last week, when I took connecting flights via Dusseldorf and Cologne for a trip to and from Dresden. To be honest, albeit low-cost, Eurowings is a decent airline. Therefore, I thought I’d share my knowledge and tell you what to expect when flying Eurowings.
Spending an extra night in Paris? Sounds marvellous. Who wouldn’t be up for that? Spoiler alert – I wasn’t. When I tell you that the only time I actually saw the Eiffel Tower during my recent trip to Paris was when I finally took off from the airport, you might get an idea of why being stranded in Paris and spending an extra night there wasn’t too high on my agenda. You guessed it. We are not talking an extra night in the heart of Paris, we are talking being stranded in Paris Orly… the airport. Which clearly wasn’t my idea of a fun Friday night?
But I might be getting a little ahead of myself here. So let me start at the beginning…
My recent trip to Slovenia saw me fly LOT Polish Airlines for the very first time.
In my mind, this was just another budget airline and I feared the worst. Especially since I was pushing my luck with my hand luggage allowance.
But gosh was I wrong. LOT Polish Airlines actually turned out to be a decent and modern airline. So to save you from the same misperception, let me tell you what to expect when flying LOT Polish Airlines.
I have already giving you some travel advise on how to prepare for your first trip to Tel Aviv. And my ‘Top Things to do in Tel Aviv’. But the one thing I only briefly touched on yet was the ordeal we had actually leaving Tel Aviv during our first trip. So now is the time to tell you all about our experience with security at Tel Aviv airport.
When flying out to Tel Aviv, we expected questioning and tighter security and the works. And were a little surprised when realising that it was pretty much business as usual. Yes, we were asked two quick questions at border control in Tel Aviv, but that was it. No extra security check or interview before boarding in Heathrow.