Today (Sunday) is the busiest travel day of Thanksgiving weekend, and although there is a nasty storm blowing through the center of the country, it’s not poised to hit any major airline hubs, so hopefully we’ll have a good end to the holiday weekend. But good luck if you are flying to Minneapolis on Monday.
Air India arrives at San Francisco International the crack of dawn on Dec 2 this week with three weekly nonstops to Delhi. Best part about the new service: the 16-hour flight shaves 2-3 hours off the one-stop flight time on other carriers. Worst part about the new service: Air India’s B777-200LR deployed on the route does not offer a lie-flat business class seat– instead it’s angled lie-flat, which could be a deal killer for a flight that long. Current economy class airfare is just over $1,000 and business class is around $4,000-$5,000 for January roundtrips.
Scroll down for news about hotel elite status match opportunities!
TravelSkills’ 10 most popular posts over the last week (descending order):
1 Huge deals: Big airfare sale – Asia, Hawaii, India, Africa– sales end tomorrow! And stay tuned for possibly more Hawaii deals when Virgin America kicks off new SFO-Maui nonstops on Dec 3.
2 Stop the madness! Another week, another new hotel fee
3 Totally worth it: Paying more pays off during holiday peak
4 Because you asked for it: Air Canada plans big transborder expansion
5 Big bird! World’s largest passenger plane unveiled
6 Lounging around: Lovely new lounges; Seattle, Orlando, Hong Kong
7 You gotta see this: First look: Newest United Club & concourse [photos]
9 SF-Paris in an hour or so: What’s faster: Hypersonic or supersonic?
Status Match Mania!
The kerfuffle caused by the Marriott-Starwood merger has competing hotel chains licking their chops, hoping to snag the biz of disaffected SPG members– or others. They are doing it via some unusual status matching options you should know about. First, Hyatt will match your status, but you have to do it via Twitter. Here’s Hyatt’s come on, which requires you to DM @HyattConcierge via Twitter, and then email your elite credentials to email@example.com. (UPDATE from Hyatt: “If you are SPG Platinum, we are offering Diamond status with Hyatt. If you are any other tier with SPG, Hilton, IHG, or Marriott, we will offer a Platinum match.”) Hilton jumped in the game, too, and to get matched status, you have to email them with your current credentials from a competing program. Send it to HHonorMyStatus@hilton.com by January 11 2016 for upgraded status through March 2017. Best Western has long offered to match status with its Status Match, No Catch promotion. Here’s an interesting twist in the status matching game: MSC Cruises will match your hotel program status in its loyalty program, which offers bennies such as priority boarding/disembarkation, welcome cocktails, late check out, a free spa session and dinner for two at one of the ship’s specialty restaurants.
A few newsy nuggets from other sources that we missed on TravelSkills this week:
NOTE: Be sure to click here to see all recent TravelSkills posts about: 5 ways to save using Uber/Lyft + New overseas plan from Verizon + Trans-Pac fare war?