Global

Category Archives for Global.

Review: Hotel Intercontinental Marine Drive, Mumbai

Last weekend was an overwhelming one, mostly for reasons that a strenuous travel schedule for this year was coming to an end, and it was the birthday of my partner and I’d decided to surprise her. I was just off a 9-hour flight less than 12 hours ago, and while I don’t get jetlagged, I was running on 2 hours of sleep. So, I thought checking into a hotel was going to be a better bet than staying home or going out, also to give vent to some of my own intentions, that I never get to stay in a hotel in Mumbai! Coming to the hotel, I missed the mark with catching the 7-day out rate, and got inside…

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Review: Pause Lounge, Bangalore Airport (Domestic)

One of my many gripes with Bangalore’s Airport in Devanahalli, apart from the distance, has been the lack of a lounge for the longest time for Jet Airways elites. Hey, they used to give you food coupons to eat in the Food Court, not appreciating that the lounge was not about the food but about the environment. This got fixed last year when Kingfisher evacuated from Bangalore Airport, and this place was made the Pause Lounge, accessible via select credit cards and for 9W elites & Business class travellers. I haven’t been able to sample this lounge for my few trips to Bangalore all this year, so this was my first time when I actually built in time into my…

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Review: Doubletree by Hilton, Goa (Arpora)

For the recently gone Independence Day long weekend, I decided that it would be a nice idea to go back to Goa during the rains. Usually, my preference is to go to South Goa and the Park Hyatt is one of my favourite resorts there. However, this time the brother and I decided to head to North Goa, since I found out that the Hilton now had a property there. This Hilton was actually an independent property, which was reflagged as the Doubletree only in 2012. Too bad, my brother could not make it at the last minute due to other commitments, however I decided to proceed with the trip regardless. After arriving on an uneventful flight from Mumbai, I…

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Indigo offers a 10% base fare discount to registered members

Indigo is promoting a new way to get users to register with them for effective targeting and marketing. I’ve usually been booking my Indigo tickets without logging into my Indigo account, however, I heard that they’re offering a new 10% off base fare coupon code to members who log-in and book tickets. This promo code popped up when I logged into my account yesterday, and it offers a 10% discount on the base fare of Indigo Airlines on any route. Take note, base fare means just the base fare, not the base fare & fuel surcharges, as it is demonstrated by this example below, random date search of fares, without the promocode. The fare is INR 6,882 + INR 100…

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Going RTW: Holiday Inn LaGuardia NYC

Introduction & Trip Index <EY 101 (AUH-JFK), Etihad, First                         AC Maples Club Lounge, LGA> After my long wait in the queues for passport control, I was kind of tired. So I asked the chauffer to drive me to the hotel and dozed off for 20-30 minutes in the car itself. On arrival, I found myself in a small little cute hotel, which was good enough to spend one full jet-lagged night before heading on for Colorado Springs. Surprisingly, while the redemption rates for this one were 25,000 IHG Club points per night, those for a Holiday Inn Express nearby were 30,000 IHG Club points per night. I did not…

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Using Air India Flying Returns to get 10 Kgs extra baggage allowance free

I truly think that Air India Flying Returns is not a great loyalty program and I’ve said it before. However, in the wake of Air India, Jet Airways, Go Air and Indigo dropping their free baggage allowance to 15 Kgs, it seems to have become an inconvenience to some travellers who still feel the need for more baggage allowance. Baggage allowance seems to be going at Rs. 250 (~$4) per Kg above the allowance, and it pinches pockets to pay. SpiceJet is the only Indian carrier offering 20 Kgs at the time of writing this. Anyhow, there is a simple trick for the heavy travellers who choose to book with Air India. Most airlines with a loyalty program offer their…

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Going RTW: Flight EY101 (AUH-JFK), Etihad, Diamond First

Introduction & Trip Index <Etihad First Class Lounge, Abu Dhabi              Holiday Inn, LaGuardia Airport> Like I earlier mentioned, by the time I went through the secondary check gates (for US-bound flights), and reached the gates, boarding was already underway and I queued through a bunch of economy passengers to get through to the jetbridge. However, this was a good time to say hello to the A340. Abu Dhabi (AUH) – New York (JFK) Thursday, May 9 2013 Depart: 10:13AM Arrive: 04:41PM Duration: 14hr28min Distance flown: 6897 miles Aircraft: Airbus A340-600 Seat: 3A (First) Meal Service: Lunch, Snacks Once on board, however, everything was okay. at the gate, the purser greeted me, and asked one of…

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Going RTW: Etihad First Class Lounge, Abu Dhabi Terminal 3

Introduction & Trip Index < EY205 (BOM-AUH), Etihad, Business              EY101 (AUH-JFK), Etihad, First> After a long trip on the bus again, we got out in the oven furnace kind of heat for just a brief moment and hopped into the Terminal 3 building. Even for transit passengers, there was going to be a security check. Like had become the trend so far, I was not being very impressed with the premium-ness of the Etihad experience. There was one premium screening queue as compared to the zillions for the non-premium passengers. And guess what, they closed out the queue right in front of me, transferring those passengers over to regular queue. Let the confusion ensue. After…

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Going RTW: Flight EY205 (BOM-AUH), Etihad, Pearl Business

Introduction & Trip Index <Celebrations Lounge, Mumbai T2                     Etihad F Lounge, Abu Dhabi T3> Boarding was pretty disorganised, and I’d begin to think this was a Mumbai Airport feature but there are airlines such as Etihad, and back in the day, Kingfisher which would enforce boarding sequence pretty well. So, the incoming flight was delayed, however, instead of going back into the lounge, I just waited in the boarding area. This was my first time being at Gate 1B, so I wasn’t in the know of what I was getting into later. Boarding started about 20 minutes later, and business class was called first, being the highest cabin on this A320.…

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Going RTW: Celebrations Lounge, Mumbai Terminal 2

Introduction & Trip Index < Introduction                               EY205, BOM-AUH, Etihad Business Class> The flight timings for Etihad to fly out of Mumbai are at a very odd hour at 4:50 AM in the morning. Odd for me I mean. I usually prefer day time flights, or even with a night flight, a departure closer to midnight so that I can get on the plane and go off to sleep at the earliest. Etihad offers a limousine pickup and drop service for customers flying with them in Business & First Class. Since I was flying Business Class between Mumbai to Abu Dhabi and First Class there on to…

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Review: Flight AI 657 (DEL-BOM), Air India, Business

Introduction Check-in: ICICI/American Express Altitude Lounge Mumbai Terminal 1A Airborne: Flight AI 660 (BOM-DEL), Air India, Economy Class Check-in: ICICI/American Express Altitude Lounge Delhi Terminal 3 Airborne: Flight AI 657 (DEL-BOM), Air India, Executive Class Since it was only me and the television in the Altitude Lounge at Delhi, I got bored pretty quick and decided to hang out at the gate after my breakfast in the lounge. It was going to be a full flight it seemed from the numbers that were lining up at the gate. While I’ve done tonnes of early morning flights and I’ve begun to not like them much, I like the fact that planes are back at their base and hence there is less…

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