Over the last week we’ve been moving all the crap I never thought I’d see again out of a 16’ x 8’ x 8’ container into a space roughly 3/5 the size of our Orlando house. The amount of stuff we have has been so daunting, that we have to put our Tanzania trip report on a brief hiatus.
Man, I hoped I’d never see this stuff again.
After living out of a suitcase for the last 20 months, it’s been a pretty draining experience. “Why do we have so much clothes? Why did we buy all of this stuff? Who bought this???”
So I’m really looking forward to our upcoming trip to Taiwan and Greece next week.
Yes, Taiwan & Greece. One trip. 2 continents. 3 bouts of jetlag.
We are literally flying around the world this time.
Triple the insanity for 120,000 US Airways miles each!
Booking the Ticket
Like many miles and points enthusiasts, I’ve long heard about the value of US Airways miles. For only 90,000 miles one could book a ticket (unfortunately US Airways has since adjusted the award to 110,000 miles) from the States to Asia via Europe, when a business class ticket to Europe cost 100,000 miles.
Since Mrs. Selfish and I mostly fly One World I’ve been itching to try more Star Alliance partners, so I booked the award back in January when US Airways was still part of the Star Alliance. While we normally fly business class, I decided to do one better and book us in first class this time for 120,000 miles each.
Here’s how we got the points:
- US Airways Card 1: 35,000 miles
- US Airways Card 2: 35,000 miles
- Converted Aeroplan points to via points.com: 42,000 miles
- US Airways Card 1 Annual Bonus: 10,000 miles
- TOTAL: 122,000 miles
Mrs. Selfish and I both applied for a US Airways card from Barclays back in January 2013 as part of a churn. The card gave us 35,000 miles with first purchase. We applied again in October 2013 for another card at 35,000 more miles each.
Then in January 2014, we transferred 50,000 American Express Membership Reward points to Aeroplan, converting them into 42,000 miles via points.com. Finally, the remaining 10,000 miles came from the first US Airways card’s annual bonus.
So where are we going? Here’s a brief play-by-play of the trip using photos I jacked from the internet.
First up is our flight from San Francisco to Beijing in first class on Air China. Air China recently upgraded this route to a 777-300ER, so I’m pretty excited to check it out.
Are people at the front of the plane really this happy? I’m willing to find out!
From there we fly to Taipei on EVA airlines. I’m really hoping we get lucky and score a Hello Kitty plane, but I imagine those are for long-haul flights. If not, we’ll definitely report on the experience.
Hello EVA Airlines!
Once we arrive in Taipei it’s off to the Grand Hyatt Taipei, we’re we’ll be spending a few nights adjusting to the time difference, hiking, and stuffing ourselves silly at the night markets. We earned a few free nights during Hyatt’s 1st quarter promotion, which we’ll use in combination with some cash & points awards.
People often refer to Taiwan as a politer, cleaner China, but I’m still prepared to dodge spit and shove people if need be.
After spending a few nights in Taipei we head south, to Taiwan’s gorgeous looking Green Island for hiking and scuba diving.
From there, we’ll head to the Toroko gorge, which is supposed to have any number of beautiful day hikes. We’re going during the dragon boat festival, so I expect we’ll snap some great dragon boat photos – hopefully in the gorge itself.
Like this… with dragon boats!
Then it’s back to Taipei, where we’ll hop on a flight to Seoul, before flying Asiana first class to Frankfurt.
Asiana is supposed to have some of the best service and food in the air – I’m especially looking forward to eating bimbimbap mid-air while watching Korean gangster films.
After a quick transfer in Frankfurt, it’s off to Athens, where we’re staying at the Hilton Athens on a cash & points award.
Fingers-crossed for a view of the Acropolis!
Next, it’s off to the Greek islands. We’re hitting them in rapid succession: Santorini! Naxos! Mykonos!
Touristy? Absolutely. Worth it? We’ll see.
Finally, it’s back to the States on business class in Air Canada via Montreal.
Hopefully we’ll have enough time to snag some poutine!
I couldn’t find any great flights back to San Francisco, so we’re staying overnight in Montreal at the Hyatt Regency on a cash & points award and upgrading to a suite, thanks to one of my 4 suite awards from last year.
So what do you guys think? Does anyone have any recommendations for Taiwan and Greece? Any jetlag tips? Is this just crazy?