I’ve taken many review trips in 2019, but my mileage run to Sydney was something I have not done in years. And it was thrilling.
This wasn’t my first mileage run to Sydney. 1o years ago I took my first one…a LAX-HNL-SFO-SYD-SFO-HNL-LAX trip that included two stops on Honolulu.
But ever since United tied RDMs (redeemable award miles) to dollars spent versus distance flown, I’ve stopped mileage running. While I did mileage run for status, the primary reason I did it was for redeemable miles…all my early first and business class trips were funded by miles. By creative routings, you could rack up a lot of miles very quickly. It’s not surprise United (and others) eventually plugged that hole.
Furthermore, I just loved to fly (and still do). My friend Ben, whom I used to mileage run with, may now prefer to stay home, but I just haven’t reached that point. In a sense, I’d fly for fun because I see it as an award in itself. The “itch” to fly and the anticipation of stepping onto an aircraft is an addictive aphrodisiac.
So the whole experience, even the aggravating delay in SFO, brought back many happy memories. 10 years ago I flew to Sydney in economy class on a 747-400 without personal TVs. This time, I was comfortable in my Polaris business class seat enjoying a multi-course dinner while chatting online and watching a movie.
But even that wasn’t the draw. It was really the arrival in Sydney, re-clearing security, lounge hopping, then getting right back on the plane that brought the biggest smile to my face.
I’ve told some friends and family this week that I flew to Sydney for a cup of coffee. They all think I am crazy. And I can hardly blame them…maybe I am, especially in this environmentally-conscious age. But I sure did enjoy the pageantry of the mileage run, something I’ve greatly missed.
Tomorrow I’ll post a review of my two longhaul flights, which I will consolidate into a single post.