It’s been 3 weeks since I haven’t flown and I am excited to be back on the road. On my previews postings I’ve mentioned how tiring traveling can be when doing back to back long haul flights and that has been the story of my life throughout 2014. I reached Executive Platinum this year early in the month of July, so I am well over the 100,000 miles flown with my beloved American Airlines. This is not considered a milage run what so ever, mostly a mix of pleasure and business travel. I booked this trip a few months ago for a whooping deal of $780 thanks to the team at @TheFlightDeal and when I saw that fare, I booked it right away.
When I called the Executive Platinum desk to request my upgrades, even the agent was surprised by the deal – It didn’t last long for the deal to be over. Vienna for some reason it’s pricey out of Los Angeles, so this was my opportunity to book this trip and get it out of the way. Throughout my 3 weeks at home I’ve been focusing on a lot of work, catching up with my family and preparing my travels for 2015 and again, 95% of them are long hauls destinations, one of them is my trip to Thailand in early January. I will be sharing with you all some of my plans throughout the trip and how I plan to maximize my visit to Vienna.
Carriers I will be flying & Routing
- LAX-LHR: American Airlines
- LHR-VIE: British Airways
- VIE-LHR: British Airways
- LHR-LAX: American Airlines
The routing for this flight was very simple. I am flying out of Los Angeles so I will be connecting into London Heathrow and then flying to Vienna. It is a night time flight which is my second night time flight this year. I love flying at night because I can manage my sleep easier according to my destination and lay overs. The exciting part is that I will be flying American Airlines Boeing 777-300ER, this is my 5th time flying this aircraft and it is indeed, one of my favorite. If you are interested, you can check out my review about the aircraft during my 17 hour flight from Dallas to Hong Kong International airport. Flight time from Los Angeles to London Heathrow will be about 10 hours once airborne.
This will also be my second time flying British Airways this year – Last time I flew British Airways was during the month of February when I flew from London to Istanbul on their boeing 767. Hopefully the service on board is better than what I received on my last flight, the experience wasn’t bad but just the Flight attendants weren’t as warm and friendly as others were. The flight time from London to Vienna its about 2 hours and dinner will be served but knowing myself, I will be enjoying some of the food at the lounges pre-departure, in which I will discuss shortly.
Upgrades & Seats Requests
One of the things I love about being an American Airlines Executive Platinum is that i get 8 System Wide Upgrades and I can use them to upgrade from Economy to Premium Cabin. As I mentioned above, I always call the EP Desk to request my upgrades right away because being top on the wait list gives me the opportunity that my upgrade will clear so I recommend doing that when booking a flight and wanting to use one of your SWU’s. On the second leg of the journey to Vienna i am flying 11C on British Airways, nothing too fancy due that it’s such a short flight. My chances of the upgrade clearing on the 10 hour flight to London are very good, last time I talked to the team at the Executive Platinum desk (few days ago), they notified me theres still over 20 seats open and we are now 5 days from departure, so by tomorrow or day after tomorrow – I should get my upgrade email by AA. This will also be my first International flight with AA with their new meal system integration so I am anxious to see how their International catering is compare to the ones I’ve taken throughout the year.
OneWorld Lounges at London Heathrow
One of my favorite things to cover and explore are airport lounges, there is nothing that fascinates me the most than visiting the lounge pre-departure and enjoying some of the amenities being offered. On the blog, I have reviewed quite a bit of my favorite lounges and I am looking forward to my long lay over in Heathrow (5 hours and 30 minutes) to explore some of the OneWorld Lounges. I will also be visiting The American Airlines Flagship Lounge to see if anything has changed at the Lounge or any new additions have been incorporated. Last time I was there was during the month of February. Down below is a list of the lounges I am going to try and visit with a few high on the priority list like the British Airways Galleries First Class Lounge and the Cathay Pacific First and Business Class Lounge. I arrive into Terminal 3 from Los Angeles into Heathrow, so every OneWorld Lounge located in Terminal 3 will be the ones I check out first, followed by Terminal 5 where British Airways is at.
Upon my arrival to Vienna, I will have car service picking me up. Touching down around 10:15pm. The weather in Vienna is Great and I am looking forward to exploring. Due that Budapest and Prague is also very close to Vienna and it has been on my bucket list of destinations to travel – I will be taking a 2 day tour to Budapest and Prague from Vienna. Another exciting fact about the trip that Oktoberfest is also happening in Vienna during my visit and it will also be my first time experiencing this type of festivities. Upon arrival to Vienna, I will share with you all the tours and attractions I will be doing during my visit as well as the transportation, places to eat, and much more.
Have you been to Vienna, Budapest and Prague? If so, what do you recommend? Places to eat? Attractions?