2017 Year in Review

In 2017, I flew 99,238 miles, which is the first time since 2012 that I haven’t crossed the 100k miles mark. Surprisingly, in spite of using miles for many of my long-haul trips, I somehow qualified for American Airlines Platinum status (thanks mostly to the Qatar business class fare out of Vietnam). This isn’t really anything to get too excited about–and I’m definitely not specifically aiming for status on any airline in 2018–but I recently went to the new Flagship lounge at ORD, and I have to say I was pretty impressed. I’m looking forward to AA opening up a Flagship lounge at PHL and being able to use it on international itineraries out of PHL.

Photo courtesy of Great Circle Mapper

There were many travel highlights in 2017. Some that immediately come to mind include visiting Petra (and visiting Jordan in general), canyoning in Dalat, hanging out at a bunny cafe in Seoul, and going on a durian tour of Malaysia.

In terms of new products, I flew Korean Air, China Airlines, and EVA Air in business class for the first time, so I hope to get those trip reports out before the end of 2018 (ambitious goals–I know!). Korean Air business class window seats on the upper deck of their 747-800s are probably the single best business class hard product I’ve ever flown, and I loved the China Airlines lounge at TPE. I’m not nearly as familiar with SkyTeam airlines as I am with oneworld and Star Alliance, but given that Chase UR transfer to Korean and SkyTeam seems to have much better availability, I think I’ll be flying SkyTeam much more.

I only got two new credit cards this year: the Chase Ink Plus and Chase Sapphire Preferred. I’m sitting on decently healthy points balances that don’t restrain my travel habits, so I haven’t felt very compelled to apply for more cards. I also canceled my Chase Sapphire Reserve, so the only “premium” card I’m holding onto is my Citi Prestige (which only has a $350 fee).

In 2018, the only international trip I have planned so far is a trip to Chile (I booked one of the cheapish Aeromexico business class fares to SCL), but I’m looking forward to seeing what this year of travel will bring!

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