Preferred Hotels & Resorts Loyalty Program: IPrefer & Platinum Premier

Luxury Travel Diary
Preferred Hotels & Resorts Loyalty Program: IPrefer & Platinum Premier
Preferred Hotels & Resorts Loyalty Program: IPrefer & Platinum Premier

Preferred Hotels & Resorts has two loyalty clubs; IPrefer (for guests) and Platinum Premier (for travel agents). By booking through a Platinum Premier agent, you will get loyalty program style benefits such as room upgrades, free breakfasts, offers, discounts and credit to spend in the bar, restaurant or spa on top of your IPrefer benefits. … Continue reading Preferred Hotels & Resorts Loyalty Program: IPrefer & Platinum Premier

The post Preferred Hotels & Resorts Loyalty Program: IPrefer & Platinum Premier appeared first on Luxury Travel Diary.

Venice braces itself for May Day 'invasion'

Travel | The Guardian
Venice braces itself for May Day 'invasion'

Metal barriers aimed at separating visitors and locals on key routes into Venice are expected to be put to use on 1 May despite protests by locals against the controversial measure

I am standing on Venice’s Bridge of Sighs on a Sunday morning … or at least trying to: a tsunami of tourists is flooding towards the Piazza San Marco (St Mark’s Square): people wielding umbrellas or gripping plastic pints of Aperol Spritz, bossy tour guides shepherding cruise-ship passengers, backpacking millennials and many others. So far, so typical, except this weekend – a four-day bank holiday that began on Saturday 28 April and runs to Tuesday 1 May – the city, already straining under the weight of mass tourism, is anticipating record visitor numbers.

Even before it started, the local press had dubbed the long weekend a “nightmare”, an “invasion” and a “Bollino Nero” (code black), a term more commonly used by Italians to describe motorway gridlocks.

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Check Out Alaska Airlines’ New Alaska Lounge at New York JFK!

Travel Codex
Check Out Alaska Airlines’ New Alaska Lounge at New York JFK!

Alaska Airlines is bringing its West Coast vibe to the East Coast with the opening of its brand new Alaska Lounge at New York’s JFK International Airport! I’ll have a full review coming up in a few days but in the meantime, check out these gorgeous pictures of the new space.

Alaska Lounge JFKAlaska Lounge JFK, photo provided by Alaska Airlines Alaska Lounge JFKAlaska Lounge JFK, photo provided by Alaska Airlines

The new Alaska Lounge is located on the mezzanine level (directly above security) of Terminal 7. It will feature Starbucks trained baristas and provide complimentary fresh foods throughout the day, including oatmeal and yogurt bars in the morning and soups and salads in the afternoon and evening. The lounge will be open from 5:00 AM to 10:00 PM, Sunday through Friday and 5:00 AM to 5:00 PM on Saturdays.

Access to the new Alaska Lounge will be available to passengers traveling in First Class and Alaska Lounge members. Single-day Alaska Lounge passes can be purchased for $45. Rumor has it this will also be a Priority Pass Lounge but I haven’t been able to verify this information yet.

Alaska Lounge JFKAlaska Lounge JFK

Here’s the full Alaska Airlines press release.

Alaska Airlines today announces the debut of its first Alaska Lounge on the East Coast, opening at John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK). The new, reimagined lounge brings to life the company’s West Coast vibe with a cool, comfortable space to work or relax while traveling through JFK.

Alaska’s newest lounge features a living room-esque design with multiple seating areas designed with business and leisure travelers in mind. The lounge includes Starbucks-trained baristas who will create custom handcrafted espresso beverages and full-leaf tea beverages for guests. Travelers will have access to complimentary fresh foods including oatmeal and yogurt bars in the morning and salad and soup in the afternoon and evening. Guests can also enjoy a wide-selection of microbrews, West Coast wines or a signature cocktail from the lounge’s welcoming bar.

“We’re always looking to create warm, welcoming experiences for our guests,” said Brett Catlin, managing director of guest products at Alaska Airlines. “Our newest Alaska Lounge at JFK reflects the future of our lounge offering – a signature West Coast vibe, unique beverage selections and a focus on fresh, healthy food options. We’re also thrilled to be the first domestic lounge to introduce a full menu of barista-pulled handcrafted espresso beverages.”

The Alaska Lounge is located on the mezzanine level of Terminal 7 at JFK. It is accessible to Alaska guests traveling through or out of Terminal 7 who have purchased a day pass or lounge membership or are flying First Class. All paid First Class guests receive complimentary access to the lounge, a benefit only offered by Alaska compared to other domestic carriers. In addition to the new JFK lounge, Alaska has lounges in Anchorage, Los Angeles, Portland, Oregon and three in Seattle, the airline’s largest hub.

I think the new Alaska Lounge looks fantastic and I can’t wait to see it later this week. What do you guys think of this brand new space? Has anyone seen it in person yet?

This article was originally published on Travel Codex. Read it at Check Out Alaska Airlines’ New Alaska Lounge at New York JFK!.

Video: In Sicily, Cannoli is Indeed Holy

Rick Steves' Travel Blog
Video: In Sicily, Cannoli is Indeed Holy

It’s Day 11 of my 100-day trip to Europe, and we’re just wrapping up the production of two wonderful new shows about Sicily — and enjoying lots and lots of cannoli. (I’m not generally “over the moon” for local sweets, but I must say…when cannoli is good, it is really good.)

This clip is actually three clips: me “on camera,” introducing our bit on cannoli from a cool little perch we found; a tiny clip of the cameraman telling me exactly where to hold the cannoli for the close-up (with a nice background — every half an inch counts); and finally, the “tease.” (I open all my shows this way, with a goofy and hopefully enticing snippet of something we’ll share later in the episode).

What you’re not seeing here is a beautiful bit we filmed of the baker stuffing his cannoli. You can see that this fall when Season 10 of Rick Steves’ Europe airs across the US on public television.

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California Dream Trip Recap: From the Bay to the Mountains

Visit The USA
California Dream Trip Recap: From the Bay to the Mountains

All About Golf Travel and Resorts

Travel and Leisure:Golf Travel and Resorts Articles from
All About Golf Travel and Resorts
Golf is a popular sport, but it is also one of the most interesting activities. There's no wonder why golf travel and resorts are getting more and more popular nowadays. Golfing helps you interact with others socially.

Luxury travel Las Vegas style

A Luxury Travel Blog
Luxury travel Las Vegas style

They say what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas. And though this gambling capital of the world is known as “Sin City”, there are actually countless luxury and family experiences to be had. Between the countless breathtaking show options, gorgeous resorts, and pools, plus restaurants and local attractions, there is more than one way to […]

The post Luxury travel Las Vegas style appeared first on A Luxury Travel Blog.

Kids and Hotels

Travel and Leisure:Hotels Accommodations Articles from
Kids and Hotels
Kids love hotels. But do other guests a favour and keep them behaving well.

Know How Hindi Helped a Sri Lankan Traveller in India

Travel and Leisure:Adventure Travel Articles from
Know How Hindi Helped a Sri Lankan Traveller in India
Language brings people closer, build bonds and scope to understand other cultures in-depth. It has always nurtured my learning whilst in India and has brought to me many experiences, rich with teachings that I would never have learnt at school.

4 Tips To Rent A Yacht That Will Make Your Cruise The Most Enjoyable And Memorable

Travel and Leisure:Luxury Cruising Articles from
4 Tips To Rent A Yacht That Will Make Your Cruise The Most Enjoyable And Memorable
Yachts have for the longest time being considered as open only to those who can afford their luxurious nature. It is however very possible for you to enjoy a luxury yacht even if for only a few days of your holiday. With so many boat rentals available, you will definitely find a yacht that you can afford for your private or group cruise needs. There is really no better way of enjoying the waterways than in yacht and with a few helpful tips, you will be able to rent a yacht that makes all your dreams come true.

Camping in Bay Area Houston? Read This First

Travel and Leisure:Camping Articles from
Camping in Bay Area Houston? Read This First
Camping in Bay Area Houston? Read This First
Outdoors enthusiasts tend to be know where the best places are to set up camp, fish, hunt, and ultimately find comfort in nature without the hubbub of city life. According to some of the biggest outdoorsmen around, if you're a fan of camping, Bay Area Houston is the place to be.

Bizarre Indian Traditions That Will Keep You Awestruck

Travel and Leisure:Airline Travel Articles from
Bizarre Indian Traditions That Will Keep You Awestruck
India has always been a mysterious place that has been luring people from all parts of the world to explore this unfathomable wonderland. There is so much hidden and occult that is practiced in India and is hard to believe. Some traditions are so bizarre that it will give you goose bumps.

How to visit four of the 20th century's most historic sites

G Adventures Blog
How to visit four of the 20th century's most historic sites

National Geographic Journeys with G Adventures turns history into an everyday adventure, bringing us face-to-face with iconic places that enlighten our spirit of curiosity. Explore Second World War military sites along France’s beaches, where Allied soldiers famously landed on D-Day. Head to Beijing’s Tiananmen Square, the epicentre of the 1989 political protests that changed the course of a nation. Visit Sarajevo’s Latin Bridge, where the Archduke Franz Ferdinand’s assassination triggered events that led to the First World War. With National Geographic Journeys, you don’t just learn about history — you live it.

Normandy, France

What’s there: D-Day beaches

What it is: Five beaches — Utah, Omaha, Gold, Juno, and Sword — where Allied troops landed on June 6, 1944, otherwise known as D-Day, as part of Operation Overlord. The invasion laid the groundwork for the Allied victory in the Second World War.

How you can visit: You can take a tour of D-Day sites on our Explore Normandy & Burgundy and our Paris & Normandy Highlights tours.

Beijing, China

What’s there: Tiananmen Square

What it is: The site of student-led demonstrations in 1989, in which Chinese citizens protested against government corruption. While the protests themselves lasted several months, from April to June of 1989, their cessation — in what is in China known as the June Fourth Incident — came with the massacre of hundreds of protestors, after the government declared martial law.

How you can visit: Our Best of China tour offers the opportunity to visit Tiananmen Square and learn more about the site’s history.

Berlin, Germany

What’s there: The Berlin Wall

What it is: A concrete barrier that divided Soviet-occupied East Berlin from West Berlin between 1961 and 1989.

How you can visit: Our Explore Central Europe tour visits sections of the Berlin Wall with a local historian.

Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

What’s there: The Latin Bridge

What it is: The site where Franz Ferdinand, Archduke of the Austro-Hungarian Empire was assassinated, in 1914, in what was then Austria-Hungary. His murder triggered events that led to the First World War.

How you can visit: Our Discover the Balkans tour, which comprises Croatia, Montenegro and Bosnia and Herzegovina, includes a stop at The Latin Bridge.

Cruise Ships: 5 Reasons the SeaDream Yacht Is One of the Best

Travel and Leisure:Cruise Ship Reviews Articles from
Cruise Ships: 5 Reasons the SeaDream Yacht Is One of the Best
Cruise Ships: 5 Reasons the SeaDream Yacht Is One of the Best
ForbesLife travel magazine recently designated the SeaDream Yacht as the best luxury level small cabin ship cruise line of 2015. The year has hardly begun, and this little cruise company has already stolen the prize. It's smaller size is a comfort to many travelers, and the company doesn't sell you short on your experience.

Where to watch World Cup 2018 in Rio de Janeiro

Urban Adventures
Where to watch World Cup 2018 in Rio de Janeiro

Você está preparado?! (Are you ready!?) With the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia rapidly approaching in June, Cariocas and expats alike will soon flood Rio de Janeiro with the greens and yellows of Brazilian futebol pride. Expectations are high as Brazilians across the nation begin to pull on their jerseys, sing the Hino do Brasil at the top of their lungs, and gather together to support the most successful national team in the history of the FIFA World Cup!

If you find yourself in the Cidade Maravilhosa at any point during the 2018 World Cup (which begins on June 14 and ends on July 15), why not dive right into the frenzy and cheer alongside the Cariocas at their favourite local joints? The entire city population will have its eyes on the screens, and you should, too! Here, picked by our local Rio tour guides, are the best spots around town to watch the five-time world champions kick their way towards World Cup victory.

Baixo Botafogo

Nestled into the heart of Rio’s most bohemian neighbourhood is the vibrant hub of Carioca bar life known as Baixo Botagofo (baixo means “point” in Portuguese). Locals spend their evenings mingling and meandering through the various bars that line the streets of Voluntários da Pátria, Nelson Mandela and São Clemente. The most popular establishments fill the sidewalks with chairs and tables where Cariocas can gather together, crack open a few ice-cold Brahma beers, and scream at the televisions in response to every futebol goal scored by Brazil.

READ: Where to eat and drink in Rio’s East Botafogo neighbourhood

Baixo Gavea

A gorgeous, tree-lined suburb by day, Gavea transforms into the bustling centre of student festivities by night. This inviting neighbourhood is home to one of Rio’s most prestigious universities, where many students celebrate the end of the school day by heading over to the concentration of bars next door and socialising with a caipirinha in hand (they typically cost USD 3!). If vibrant university nightlife is your kind of scene, make your way to the most popular bars like Garota da Gávea, BG Bar and Hipódromo, which will be streaming the FIFA World Cup throughout the evenings.

READ: How to make the perfect caipirinha

Alzirão da Tijuca

With the arrival of every World Cup, a deluge of thousands of face-painted, jersey-clad futebol fans descend upon the famous street of Alzira Brandão, located in the Tijuca neighbourhood of Rio’s North Zone. Largely considered the pinnacle of World Cup festivities in the entire city, Alzirão da Tijuca became the birthplace of local viewing when a dozen Cariocas gathered on the sidewalk to watch the games on a tiny television in 1978. Four decades later, the Cup is now streamed on enormous screens through the Alzirão and accompanied by live music concerts and samba performances.

The post Where to watch World Cup 2018 in Rio de Janeiro appeared first on Urban Adventures.

Paros Island is Greece’s new hot destination

A Luxury Travel Blog
Paros Island is Greece’s new hot destination

Paros Island is part of the Cyclades complex in the Aegean Sea, standing out for its long blonde sandy beaches, the local cuisine and the strong winds, which invite surfers from all over the world. The islandcites the heart of the Cycladic Islands, with serene landscapes, fertile valleys and rolling hills dotted with small churches […]

The post Paros Island is Greece’s new hot destination appeared first on A Luxury Travel Blog.

Enjoy San Francisco Without Budget-Busters Following These Tips on Money-Saving

Travel and Leisure:City Guides and Information Articles from
Enjoy San Francisco Without Budget-Busters Following These Tips on Money-Saving
Visiting the USA, San Francisco may make you leave your heart, not your life savings. Here, you can have fun and also keep a check on your spending. Heading downtown San Francisco means navigation is easy.

Review: Le Meridien Tampa Executive King Suite

Travel Codex
Review: Le Meridien Tampa Executive King Suite

I’ve been to Tampa a few times in the last year or so for business trips. One of the trips I stayed downtown, and found a decent rate at the Le Meridien. I’ve typically enjoyed my time in Le Meridien properties in the past, and they are pretty rare in North America, so I was glad to have the opportunity to mix it up a bit. I was upgraded to an Executive King suite for free thanks to my status. This is my review of the Le Meridien Tampa.

Related links: Le Meridien Kuala Lumpur, Le Meridien Angkor, Le Meridien Dubai

The Le Meridien Tampa is inside the former federal Courthouse in downtown. Many of the public spaces retain the historic look of the former life of this building. Guest rooms are modern if a little dark. I only spent one night here, but the central location was convenient. Lots of options for food and other activities are within walking distance.

Executive King Suite

I was pleasantly surprised to get upgraded when I checked in thanks to my SPG Platinum status. The Executive King suite was around 700 square feet, about double the size of standard rooms. The room has dark walls, and modern decor. The suite has 3 main areas, including a living room with a large couch, the king bedroom with a desk and espresso machine and a large closet and finally  the bathroom. It was more space than I needed traveling alone for a short stay. I didn’t spend much time in the room other than to sleep.

The bedroom was large, with high ceilings. I found the pillow-top mattress very comfortable. In some ways I wish I had stayed here longer than just one night. The bed was great.

The bathroom was fine. I prefer a shower with doors rather than a shower over a tub, so that was appreciated. Otherwise, there wasn’t anything special that made it stand out as a suite. Just a nice modern hotel bathroom.

The vanity mirror has the typical GPS coordinates branding common at Le Meridien properties.


Coffee vans should appreciate the Illy espresso available in the room.

My room faced the pool. Small, but nice to have in steamy Tampa. I did not use the pool during my stay.

I did use the gym, which was fine, nothing too memorable. The restaurant looked nice, but I didn’t eat dinner there, as is my norm in most hotels. I did grab breakfast to go after checking out.

Elsewhere in Tampa…

There is lots of good dining options in Tampa. For now, I’ll focus on just one. In my recent trips to the area, I’ve become a fan of their beer scene.

Tampa is really a great beer city. I’d prefer not to give credit to Busch Gardens, but their historical large brewery nearby now brews Yuengling for southern markets. Beyond that, Cigar City has done a lot for the beer scene in the area. During my stay I visited Angry Chair Brewing, and I would wholeheartedly recommend this to visitors looking for some excellent brews. Angry Chair is in the Seminole Heights neighborhood north of downtown, and there are lots of good local restaurants in the area.


Final thoughts

The Le Meridien Tampa is a nice hotel option downtown. I enjoyed the free upgrade, and even without that, I’d be happy to return again on future trips to the area. The architecture is unique, with the classic exterior of the courthouse, with modern touches inside since the renovation to become Le Meridien.

This article was originally published on Travel Codex. Read it at Review: Le Meridien Tampa Executive King Suite.


Paris Through My Lens
The Palais Royal has always been a very special place for me since my second trip to Paris in 2008. I am drawn there each and every trip.

Booking A Ski Lodge? Do These Five Things First

Travel and Leisure:Ski Resorts Articles from
Booking A Ski Lodge? Do These Five Things First
Booking A Ski Lodge? Do These Five Things First
When winter comes along, it's a little hard not to get a little discouraged by the cold. Then again, if you're going to be spending part of your winter basking in the awesomeness of a ski lodge, winter may just be the best season of the year.

A local’s guide to Nice, France: 10 top tips

Travel | The Guardian
A local’s guide to Nice, France: 10 top tips

The once-sleepy grande dame of the Côte d’Azur is now its vibrant artistic hub, with cool new bars, restaurants and galleries enlivening its classic sights

Nice is booming, despite and in defiance of the terrorist attack that shattered the Bastille Day celebrations here less than two years ago. Irina Brook, daughter of legendary director Peter Brook, who runs the prestigious Théâtre National de Nice, reveals her favourite art venues, restaurants and bars.

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Just Released! WALT DISNEY WORLD Free Dining Offer

Disney World, Disney Cruise, Universal Orlando Resort, and Orlando Vacations,
Just Released! WALT DISNEY WORLD Free Dining Offer
WALT DISNEY WORLD Free Dining is Back!

Savor the chance to experience an unforgettable stay in the middle of the magic! Enjoy a FREE dining plan when you purchase a non-discounted Magic Your Way vacation package that includes a room at a select Disney Resort hotel and a ticket with a Park Hopper® Option. A minimum of 4 nights and a minimum 4-day Park Hopper® ticket is required for each guest.

If you book a Value or Moderate resort, you will receive the Quick Service Dining Plan at no charge. If you book a Deluxe or Deluxe Villa resort, you will receive the standard Dining Plan at no charge. You can upgrade to a higher-priced dining plan by paying the difference in price.

Book through July 7, 2018 for arrivals most nights August 20 through September 29, November 24 through November 27 and December 7 through December 23, 2018. Note: packages for other lengths of stay may be available. Contact Us for a Free, No-Obligation Quote Today! 877-918-8941 or Request a Price Quote Online

Important Details:

The number of rooms allocated for this offer is limited. Everyone in the same room must be on the same package. Advance reservations are required. Tickets and options must be used within 14 days of first use. First use must be on or before December 31, 2019. Some table-service restaurants may have limited or no availability at time of package purchase. Cannot be combined with any other discount or promotion. Offer excludes the following room types: campsites, 3-bedroom villas and Little Mermaid Standard Rooms at Disney’s Art of Animation Resort. Gratuities are not included. Children ages 3 to 9 must choose from the children’s menu, if available.

The post Just Released! WALT DISNEY WORLD Free Dining Offer appeared first on Disney World, Disney Cruise, Universal Orlando Resort, and Orlando Vacations,.

Video: Sharing Joy Under a Sicilian Moon

Rick Steves' Travel Blog
Video: Sharing Joy Under a Sicilian Moon

Staying at a farmhouse B&B (an agriturismo) is a great way to get to know a farm family in Italy — with the added bonus of farm-fresh cuisine. Midway through dinner here at Azienda Agricola Mandranova, I was inspired to step away from the dining room and into the nighttime wonder of an olive and almond grove under a bright moon. Join me as I marvel at the happiness being savored right now all over the world, just as it is in this little moment at a remote farm in Sicily.


Sure, my crew and I are richly blessed to have work like this. But you don’t need to be wealthy to be joyful. You just need stability, good governance, and peace. That’s something we can all strive for. Joy is the norm in our world — and it’s a reasonable goal for all.

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Everywhere You Can Fly the Airbus A350 in 2018

Travel Codex
Everywhere You Can Fly the Airbus A350 in 2018

The Airbus A350 has been in service since January 2015, but still, only a handful of airlines operate it around the globe. There are actually three variants of the Airbus A350: the A350-900, the A350-900-XWB, and the A350-1000.

The first of those, the Airbus A350-900, or A359, has been in commercial service since 2015, as stated above. The next variant, the A350-900XWB, is designed to be an ultra-long-range aircraft that has higher fuel capacity over the A359. It can fly up to 19-hours within a 9,700-mile nautical range. The launch carrier of this prototype, Singapore Airlines, completed its maiden flight from Toulouse on April 23, 2018. It will be used to operate nonstop flights between Singapore and New York City once the delivery takes place to SQ this August.

Global routes that currently or will feature the A350 in 2018

The -1000 version will serve as a stretch of the -900, and be used to replace the Airbus A340-600. Its primary competitors will be the Boeing 777-300ER and future Boeing programmes such as the 787-10 and 777-9. The A359 was designed to compete with the 777-200ER and 787-9, and replace the Airbus A340-300 and Airbus A340-500.

Currently, there is only one Airbus A350-1000 in service, and that is on Qatar Airways. The remaining Airbus A350s that are in service are all of the -9000 variants with Rolls Royce engines. These are the following airlines that operate the A350:

Air Caraibes Air Mauritius Asiana Airlines Cathay Pacific China Airlines Delta Air Lines Ethiopian Airlines Finnair French Bee Hong Kong Airlines Iberia LATAM Airlines Brasil Lufthansa Malaysia Airlines Qatar Airways Singapore Airlines Thai Airways International Vietnam Airlines

There will hundreds of routes that the A350 is offered on through the rest of the year, and here are the ones where you are most likely to find it.

All maps generated by the Great Circle Mapper – copyright © Karl L. Swartz

Air Caraibes

This is probably one of the few airlines that you’ve never heard of, much less flown. Interestingly, their IATA code is, “TX,” but this is an airline that has little to do with anything pertaining to the Lone Star State. Based in Martinique, Air Caraibes only offers a fleet of 12 aircraft, consisting of propeller planes (ATR-72s), Airbus A330s, and Airbus A350s. It has 2 A350-900s in service and 3 A350-1000s on order.

Fort-de-France - Paris Orlysub-dailyyear-round
Pointe-à-Pitre - Paris Orlysub-dailyyear-round

Air Mauritius

The flag carrier of this tiny island in the Indian ocean shares similarities with the one above. It has a small fleet (~21 aircraft) consisting of short-range propeller planes, as well as a few long-haul Airbus aircraft, including the Airbus A340, and now, the A350. It has two in service and four on-order, entirely of the -900 variant. All routes are operated from its Port Louis hub.

Paris CDGdailyyear-round
St. Denis de la Reunion8 totalin April, May, and October

Asiana Airlines

Seoul-based Asiana is also a Star Alliance carrier and has a mixed fleet of narrow and widebody planes. It flies to short-haul markets as well as intercontinental markets, and the A350 has recently been deployed to a lot of its North American stations. The A350 will be a huge part of its fleet replacement program, as it has 4 of the -900 series in service and an additional 17 on order, plus 10 of the -1000 variants on order.

All A350 routes are operated from the Seoul Incheon hub.

Bangkoksub-dailyOctober onward
Hanoimulti-daily, dailyyear-round
Hong Kong1x onlyin May 2018
London Heathrowdailyyear-round
Los Angelessub-dailyMay-October
New York JFKdailyNovember onward (plus 4x in October)
Osakadailythrough April
San Franciscodailyyear-round

Cathay Pacific

Hong Kong-based Cathay Pacific Airways has 22 A350-900s in service with an additional 6 on order. It will also take delivery of 20 Airbus A350-1000s. All routes are operated from Hong Kong. All routes are from Hong Kong unless otherwise stated.

Bangkokmulti-dailythrough October
Bangkok - Singaporedaily, sub daily starting in Junethrough November
Cape Townsub-dailystarting November
Christchurchsub-dailystarting December
Dublinsub-dailystarting June
Ho Chi Minhmulti-dailyJune onward
London Gatwicksub-daily, then dailyyear-round
Manilamulti-dailythrough October
Newarksub-daily, then dailystarting May 2018
Osakasub-dailyApril, May, June, September, October
Romesub-dailyApril, May and October onward
San Franciscodailyyear-round
Sapporo1x totalin May 2018
Seoulsub-dailyApril, May, August, September, October
Seoul - Taipei1x totalApril and May
Singaporemulti-dailythrough October
Taipeimulti-dailythrough October
Tel Avivsub-dailyyear-round
Tokyo Narita3x totalApril and May

China Airlines

China Airlines, based in Taipei, Taiwan, has 12 A350-900s in service, with an additional two on-order. All routes are from Taipei unless otherwise stated.

Bangkoksub-daily (except for July - Sept)through October
Brisbane - Aucklanddailyyear-round
Hanoi4x monthlyApril, and July onward
Hong Kongsub-dailyyear-round
London Gatwicksub-dailyyear-round
Naha (Okinawa)sub-dailythrough October
Saigon3x totalApril 2018
Seoul2x totalMay 2018
Shanghai1x totalMay 2018
Shenzhen1, 4, and 5 totalOctober, November, December
Tokyo Naritasub-dailyyear-round

Delta Air Lines

Delta was the North American launch customer for the Airbus A350. The vast majority of its A350 long-haul operations are from its Detroit hub, but they also appear in Los Angeles and Atlanta. Delta has 8 in service and 17 on order.

Atlanta - Seouldailyyear-round
Detroit - Amsterdamdailyyear-round
Detroit - Beijingdaily through August, then sub-dailyyear-round
Detroit - Seouldailyyear-round
Detroit - Shanghaisub-daily, daily (June-Sept)year-round
Detroit - Tokyo Naritadailyyear-round
Los Angeles - Shanghaisub-daily, then dailyJuly 2018 onward

Ethiopian Airlines

Ethiopian Airlines, based in Addis Ababa, has 7 A350s in service and 17 on order. All routes are from Addis Ababa

Beirut1x totalApril
Dar Es Salaam1x totalApril
Dubaimulti-dailyJuly onward
Frankfurtdailythrough October
Jeddahsub-dailyApril, May, July, Sept
KilmanjarodailyJuly onward
London Heathrowdaily, multi-dailyyear-round
Mumbaimulti-dailyMay, November, and December 2018 only
N'Djili/Kinshasasub-dailythrough May
Paris1x totalApril


Finnair was one of the earliest launch customers of the Airbus A350 and has utilized this aircraft to transform the long-haul operations from its Helsinki hub. Previously, Finnair operated Airbus A330s and Airbus A340s to serve markets in the Middle East and Asia, but now has 11 A350s in service with an additional 8 on order to fly to these markets as well as seasonal routes to warm destinations. All routes are from Helsinki.

Ho Chi Minh City3 totalDecember-only
Hong Kongmulti-dailyyear-round
Hong Kongdailyyear-round
Krabi6 flights totalDecember-only
London Heathrowdailyyear-round
Phuketless than dailyDecember-only
Puerto Vallarta3 totalDecember-only
Tokyo Naritamulti-dailyyear-round

French Bee

This is another airline you likely have not heard of, and ironically enough, this carrier has two Airbus A350-900s that have been around for some time. The airline used to be called French Blue, but in any case, it exists as a low-cost carrier connecting Paris to Tahiti, with a stopover in San Francisco.

Paris Orly - Saint Denis de la Reunionsub-dailyyear-round
Paris Orly - San Franciscosub-dailyMay 2018 - onward
San Francisco - Papeetesub-dailyMay 2018 - onward

Hong Kong Airlines

Hong Kong Airlines is a newer entrant to the North American market that is owned by HNA Group, the same parent company as Hainan Airlines. It has 4 A350s in service with an additional 15 on order.

Los Angelesdailyyear-round
San Franciscosub-dailythrough November
Shanghai Hongqiao (SHA)sub-dailyyear-round
Taipeisub-dailythrough May


Iberia does not have any A350s delivered (yet) but will begin to receive them in the next few months. It has already announced the initial A350 routes, including the ones below.

London Heathrowsub-dailyJuly and August
New York JFKsub-daily (August), multi-daily (Sept/Oct)August - October only

LATAM Airlines Brasil

LATAM Brasil bases its A350s predominantly in Sao Paulo, with 5 in service and 12 on order. It also has a sub-fleet of A350s that are leased to Qatar Airways, and can be found on the following routes to Doha:

BarcelonadailyJune - October
Doha - BeirutdailyJune - October
Doha - Kuwaitsub-daily, multi-dailyApril/May
Doha - Munichmulti-dailythrough October
Doha - Muscatsub-dailyin April
Madridsub-dailyOctober onward
ParisdailyMay onward


Lufthansa aims to use the A350 to replace its Airbus A340-300 and Airbus A340-600 aircraft. Since the vast majority of these planes are based in Munich, many of the first A350 routes on Lufthansa originate in its Munich hub. It currently has 8 in service and 17 on order.

Beijingsub-dailyOctober onward
Cape Townsub-dailyDecember
Chicago O'HaredailyApril onward
Denverdailythrough October
Hong Kongsub-dailyOctober onward
Mexico Citysub-dailyOctober onward
Mumbaidailythrough April
New York JFKsub-dailyAugust onward
Shanghaisub-dailyJune - October
Tokyo Hanedasub-daily, dailyMay onward
VancouverdailyMay - October

Malaysia Airlines

Malaysia Airlines has 4 A350s and 2 on order. All routes originate in Kuala Lumpur.

London HeathrowMulti-dailyApril-onward
Tokyo NaritaDaily, multi-dailyMay-onward

Qatar Airways

Qatar Airways is the launch customer of the A350, and has the most of any carrier in service (23), with also the largest number of -900s on order (18) and the largest number of -1000s on order (36). It also has 1 of the -1000s in service.

Beirutsub-dailythrough October
Copenhagendaily, multi-dailyAugust-October
Delhidailythrough November
Frankfurtdaily, multi-dailyMay-onward
Islamabadsub-dailythrough April
Karachisub-dailythrough November
Lahoresub-dailythrough April
London Heathrowmulti-dailyyear-round
Muscatsub-dailyMay, October and November
New York JFKdailyyear-round
Paris CDGdailyyear-round
Tokyo Hanedadailyyear-round

Singapore Airlines

Singapore Airlines has the second largest number of Airbus A350-900s in service (21), but has the largest on-order (46) which will place it ahead of Qatar Airways when all of them come online. It has opted for 16 of the -1000 variants.

Hong Kongdailyyear-round
Moscow DMEsub-dailyyear-round
Moscow DME - Stockholmsub-dailyyear-round
San Franciscodailyyear-round
Tokyo Hanedadailyyear-round

Thai Airways International

Thai Airways has 11 A350s in service and 1 on order, all of the -9000 family.

Beijingdailythrough October
Chiang Maisub-dailyJune-October
Osakadailythrough October
Singaporemulti-dailythrough August
Tokyo Hanedadaily, multi-dailyJune-October
Tokyo Naritadailyyear-round

Vietnam Airlines

Vietnam Airlines has 11 A350-900s in service and 3 on order.

Hanoi - Frankfurtsub-dailyyear-round
Hanoi - Ho Chi Minh Citymulti-dailyyear-round
Hanoi - Paris CDGdailyyear-round
Hanoi - Seouldailyyear-round
Hanoi - Shanghaidailyyear-round
Hanoi - Tokyo Hanedadailyyear-round
Ho Chi Minh City - Frankfurtsub-dailyyear-round
Ho Chi Minh City - Paris CDGsub-dailyyear-round
Ho Chi Minh City - Shanghaidailythrough November
Ho Chi Minh City - Tokyo NaritadailyJuly-onward

This article was originally published on Travel Codex. Read it at Everywhere You Can Fly the Airbus A350 in 2018.

History of Machu Picchu
History of Machu Picchu

History of Machu Picchu

Archaeological evidence uncovered around the site suggests that the area was first used for agricultural purposes back in 760 B.C.

The war of Vilcambamba Pachacutec in 1440 established the first settlement at the site. It was called the Tahuantinsuyo Empire which was later followed by the formation of the government of Manco Capac.

It is thought that Machu Picchu was first inhabited by 300-1000 inhabitants, who were of the highest Class or "llactas".

The valleys around these areas were important for their agricultural contribution, however after death of the Emperor Pachacutec, it lost it's importance, with the establishment of new sites like Ollaytantambo and Vilcambamba. The building of these new sites by his successors, in more accessible terrain made Machu Picchu less appealing.

From 1527 to 1532, two brothers Huáscar and Atahualpa fought against each other in a civil war over the Inca Empire. Their father, Inca Huayna Capac had given each brother a section of the empire to manage, one in Huáscar in Cuzco and Atahualpa in Quito. When Huayna Capac and his heir, Ninan Cuyuchi, died somewhere between 1525 and 1527, the two brothers Atahualpa and Huáscar went to war over who should rule.  The population who had come to live in the Machu Picchu area from rural or remote locations left after the war ended to return to where they came from. Later another brother, Manco Inca was sent into exile in Vilcambamba, and Machu Picchu was deserted.

Antonio Raimondi was an Italian geographer and scientist from Milan who visited Machu Picchu in 1851. In 1867 Augusto Berns arrived to mine the site.

Hiram Bingham re-discovered the ruins in 1911. He documented and publicised his "discovery".

Hiram Bingham

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Ladies, Keep These Tips in Mind When Traveling Abroad

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Ladies, Keep These Tips in Mind When Traveling Abroad
Regardless of if the traveler is a male or a female, it is vital to take precautions when traveling. Women travelers especially need to be cautious of traveling alone anywhere around the world.

Willow Osborne - Banjo Phenom

Visit The USA
Willow Osborne - Banjo Phenom

New British Airways A320 Neo: Where Has My Central Table Gone?

Luxury Travel Diary
New British Airways A320 Neo: Where Has My Central Table Gone?
New British Airways A320 Neo: Where Has My Central Table Gone?

British Airways flew it’s first brand new A320neo aircraft, brand new from Airbus, this week. The new Economy seats are thin and don’t recline. The “new” Business Class seats are in fact the old design of reclining economy seats. But crucially, they will not have the middle seat shelf between the seats, like those you … Continue reading New British Airways A320 Neo: Where Has My Central Table Gone?

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In One Year, My Chase Sapphire Reserve Has Paid for Itself Twice Over

Travel Codex
In One Year, My Chase Sapphire Reserve Has Paid for Itself Twice Over

I want to share a quick story about how I’ve been able to leverage the benefits of the Chase Sapphire Reserve card within one year to pay massive dividends which affect my travel channels.

A year ago, I was searching for one-way return flights from Taipei, Taiwan to San Francisco, and found a return flight in business class for 144,108 points. This is equivalent to $2,161.62 USD for a one-way business class flight, which is a heck of a lot of cash, but I “quantified” that this was well above my reservation price for several reasons:

The flight would earn me elite-qualifying miles on my preferred airline with status (Alaska Airlines) I would get to fly on the 747-8I on Korean Air in Business, which would be a first for me I would get to fly China Airlines in Business class, also a first for me I wanted to travel home comfortably after a tiring 10-day trip to Asia and given that the flight was during peak travel season (August), this was a reasonable fare.

Now, parting ways with that many miles is not easy. But, I’ll be upfront: I am single, I don’t have any dependents, and I don’t have a mortgage. At the same time, I don’t travel as much as I used to, nor do I eat-out and party as much as I’d like to (#GradSchoolProblems) and I also haven’t referred anyone to the CSR yet to get any referral bonuses.

As such, my accruals for the card are purely based on everyday activities like dining (mostly Chipotle), shopping (primarily wedding gifts for all my friends), and other expenditures. “Travel” purchases for me consist of mainly paying parking fees (or tickets) and toll tag fees.

That being said, I was curious to see how long it would take me to accrue the points that I had spent when I purchased these flights back in early May 2017. When I logged into the portal, I saw that I have earned roughly 71,200 points in the past 365 days, which equates to roughly $1,067.94 eligible to be used for travel.

Now, if I were to quantify the value of the card based upon its annual fee, then I would simply divide that figure by $450 and it would yield me a number greater than two. Subsequently, I could claim that the card has paid the annual fee twice over. And, that is in addition to the $300 that Chase pays back to users of the CSR for travel (this is automatically reimbursed by Chase as the expenses are incurred).

But, there is another benefit: the travel redemption via the CSR on Korean Air essentially allowed me to requalify for MVP status on Alaska Airlines in 2017. This is a benefit worth $905, according to valuations from The Points Guy.

Alaska offers extremely generous accrual rates for Korean Air flight in Premium cabins. If you have MVP status with Alaska, you earn 125% bonus miles for this trip in Prestige class, in addition to the 100% miles you accrue for the trip by itself. So, net-net, my trip yielded an additional 12,733 miles to earn a total of 18,392 miles. This was still short of MVP qualification, but I had a few other trips on Alaska/Virgin America to both San Francisco and New York in 2017 that helped me re-qualify. That said, the trip on Chase points did most of the heavy-duty lifting.

I was able to enjoy some of the most delicious bibimbap I’ve ever tasted at 35,000 feet, thanks to the Chase Sapphire Reserve I also got to enjoy this view flying the rare 747-8I on the Upper Deck of Korean Air Prestige Class

Finally, these figures also exclude perks and benefits like Priority Pass club access and trip cancellation and protection reimbursement (this became useful during all the snowstorms on the East coast this year).

Above all, I cannot stress how much value you can derive from this card, especially if you’re just an average Joe who doesn’t jet set around the world as much as you’d like to (or care to, for that matter). And while the 100,000 point sign-up bonus is no longer available, the current 50,000 points sign-up bonus is still a heck-of-a-deal.

If you want to learn more about tips and tricks to earn more frequent flier points/miles in 2018, you can read my story on some “hacks” here. 

How has your experience been with the CSR on redemptions if you’ve had the card longer than 18 months? 

This article was originally published on Travel Codex. Read it at In One Year, My Chase Sapphire Reserve Has Paid for Itself Twice Over.