Are you a P.O.S.H. flyer?

Those of you who are nautical buffs may be familiar with the term P.O.S.H.

The current definition is: Elegant or stylishly luxurious, but that is not where the term originates, but it is a term that I remember almost every time I book seats on an jetliner.

Long before jets raced around the world travel was by steamship.  The British aristocrats would book their steamship cabins from Southampton (which did not have air conditioning) to India and the Purser would indicate the initials P.O.S.H next to their names on the manifest. This stood for Port side Outbound, Starboard side Home. Port being the left side of the ship and starboard being the right side of the ship. So you see, going from Southampton England to India you want to be on the port side of the ship to avoid the sun beating down on your cabin, and on the return home from India you want to be on the starboard side of the ship to again keep the heat of the sun off of your cabin. Hence the term P.O.S.H.

This has a practical use for us flyers, by always remembering the term POSH you can avoid the glare of the sun on your window and in your face by selecting the side of the airplane to make you a POSH flyer.

Do you know any other travel trivia? Post here and I will select one by the end of January to win an SPG50 voucher good for 50% off up to 5 nights which expires in 2013.

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Where In The World Is mrpickles? Part Two: Staging and Nesting flights

Part One: Need to re-qualify United Airlines 1k status

Part Two: Staging and nesting flights

Part Three: Singapore, the long way

Part Two: Staging and nesting flights

Trip Report
Scheduled Departure: 21:30
Actual Departure: 21:30
Scheduled Arrival: 05:29
Actual Arrival: 0510
Aircraft: Boeing 737-900
Seat: 21F Reclining exit row with 110 power outlets


This is a staging flight which I purchased for $108 round trip.  A staging flight is when you purchase a ticket solely to get to another city to tai advantage of an airfare not available from your home city. You could book an inexpensive ticket to take advantage of a Saturday night requirement and the “nest” another round trip ticket within the dates of the first ticket, never staying one a Saturday in the city on the first ticket.  In this situation I am nesting a Newark/Singapore flight within a San Diego/Newark flight to create a SAN/EWR-EWR/SEA/NRT/SIN/NRT/ORD/EWR-EWR/SAN route and ending up with 25,661 Elite Qualifying Miles.  100,000 EQMs ( also known as “BIS” Butt In Seat miles) are required annually to renew United 1k status, the top elite level.

Friday evening check-in went smoothly except the counter agent tried to claim that they did not fly from SEA to SIN and then did not understand why anyone would want to choose the routing that I was booked on. After he created a phantom itinerary he was able to check my one empty bag ( all of my important stuff was in a carry on) through to Singapore.  I was promptly issued all four of my boarding passes for flights through to Singapore with arrival early Monday morning.

Terminal 2 Check-in for Continental Airlines: San Diego International Airport

Security screening was quick and by straggling at the x-ray machine I was successful at approaching the metal detectors while another passenger was entering the body scanner, thus avoiding having to declare that I am an opt out for the body scanner and avoiding a “personal” exam by the TSA.

Boarding was prompt with the usual confused passengers trying to board with the first class and Global Services members.  Interestingly this is the first flight that I have ever been in the jet way and over heard the other passengers in mass mocking the 99%er’s at the gate.   They were making comments such as “Oh aren’t I part of the crew, don’t I get to pre-board so I can help the pilot?” On one hand it was quite funny, but on the other hand it was quiet juvenile.

I had originally selected 7C, which was a bulkhead.  The check-in agent suggested changing me to 21F because the armrest lifts, and he would block the center seat so I could get some sleep.  Legroom was great, after I moved my roll aboard to the center area.

Exit row leg room CO1111 SAN-EWR

Take off was smooth to the west and after a turn to the east I had a clear view of the San Diego skyline.  Thirty-five minutes after take off the drink cart appeared and I ordered my signature drink, Coke Zero with lime. I think Coke Zero has a much better taste than Diet Coke, which has a more chemical taste to me. Lucky from One Mile at a Time blog may disagree with me.

Coke Zero with fresh lime and ice.

With me being an avid United Airlines Mileage Plus fan I was quite apprehensive when the merger of United Airlines and Continental Airlines was announced.  So far the few flights that I have had on the CO aircraft have been very pleasant, finding power outlets, DirecTV with individual monitors, matching my UA 1k status to CO Platinum Elite and just about every other feature.  I know some of you disagree with me and I acknowledge that UA has changed a lot of the United Mileage Plus features for Premier Silver and Gold members but most features for Premier 1ks remain intact.

There was no meal service on this red eye flight and I quickly slipped on my Bose QC15’s, reclined and took a nap. In what seemed like minutes the lights came on and the flight attendant announced we were about to land at Newark Liberty International airport. Landing was smooth as can be and within minutes we were at our gate.  I was off to the United Club to catch a quick shower and breakfast prior to my next flight CO1581 boarding in a mere 3.5 hours.

Private shower facilities at the United Club Terminal C Newark Liberty airport

Self service continental breakfast buffet at the United Club

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Where In The World Is mrpickles? Introduction

Part One: Introduction Need to re-qualify United Airlines 1k status

Part Two: Staging and nesting flights

Part One: Need to re-qualify United Airlines 1k status

Late last year I was on a quest to purchase a new home and one thing led to another and suddenly it was December 2011 and I only had 27k EQMs on United Airlines to renew status through January 2013. I had to decide between racking up a lot of miles in the last 3 weeks of December or wait until January and earn the status through January 2014.  I worked out a plan to use a combination or low fares, e-coupons and vouchers to achieve my 100k EQM goal on United Airlines.

My first flight starts this Friday; SAN-EWR, EWR-SEA-NRT-SIN, SIN-NRT-ORD-EWR, EWR-SAN at 25,661 EQMs ( at $0.058 cpm) and 51,322 RDMs ( at $0.0293 cpm).

It is generally considered that under $.06/mile is great for a pure EQM mileage run and under $.03 for a RDM mileage run.

I will be staying one night at the Singapore Sheraton Towers and one night at the Singapore Hilton, both on points with no cash outlay. I plan on getting a custom suit made and having some good food from the night hawkers.

My second trip is the following week: CLD-LAX-IAD-FRA-CPT, CPT-FRA-ORD-LAX-CLD at 25,364 EQMs ( at $0.0528 cpm) and 50,728 RDM ( at $0.0267 cpm)

I planned this trip to end exactly on the day that my United 1k status ends, January 31, 2012 in order to maximize my 100% RDM bonus miles.  To my enjoyment the United/CO merger has taken a little longer on the technical side and they are extending elite benefits until late first quarter 2012 which means that the rest of my trip in first quarter will earn the 100% RDM.

So my net haul this month in redeemable miles will be 102,050 United miles.

This is my first trip report so please consider it to be a work in progress.

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