Some of you may already know from my previous post about my upcoming 2013 travel that I have a mileage run to San Diego this weekend. Congrats to Carol for winning two United drink tickets that I gave away earlier today on twitter [donated by reader, Charles] for correctly guessing where I’ll be this weekend (if you’re attentive to details about the blog, be sure to follow me, I get bored sometimes and like to give away free stuff to followers).
Anyway, lots of east-coasters took advantage of a fantastic $140-$161 trans-con fare sale not too long ago between ZFV to SAN. For those who have not heard of “ZFV” before (don’t worry, neither had I at the time), it’s the “airport code” for Philadelphia’s 30th Street Amtrak station. Yes, United technically “flies” from there as you can see from my original itinerary below:
I’m based out of EWR, so I was a bit annoyed that I’d have to technically get myself all the way to Philadelphia just to end up right back in Newark at the start of my trip, but for the love of miles, of course it made sense to me. I still was a teeny-bit cranky though. My first instance was to “skip” the Amtrak segment all together and just show up at EWR at the time of my flight, but I’ve heard horror stories about United Airlines canceling the entire itinerary if the first segment was skipped.
Well, with all the chaos going on at United recently with their 787 troubles, it looked like there had been an equipment change, and the 767-400 from EWR-IAH had been swapped out. I was a little bummed because I had purposely chosen a crazy routing just to increase my complimentary premier upgrade chances (as a Premier Gold) on the 767-400. I recently flew in first class from EWR-DEN earlier this month in one of United’s new lie-flat first seats and was hoping I’d have a shot at it again…
I knew it would be a long shot for me to call United and ask if they could rebook me so that I was originating directly out of EWR, completely bypassing Philly to begin with because of the equipment change, but if you don’t ask, the answer is always no, right?
To my surprise, I made the call, and my agent was able to rebook my itinerary allowing me to start right at home at EWR, saving me the time, hassle, and money getting to Philly early on Saturday morning. I’ve had success with changing and canceling flights free of charge due to time schedule changes in the past, but this was my first schedule change involving an equipment swap that actually allowed me to change my origin too. Success.
Now, there’s a reason why I chose the title, “Driving to Philly is Silly”:
Ironically, as I was typing this blog post, an interesting tweet came through stream. It was a promoted contest from Frontier Airlines… titled “Driving to Philly is Silly”, where you can enter to win a year’s worth of free flights from their new Trenton hub. Is it a sign or what? (George, do we have to go to lunch again for me to win?)
You can find out more about Frontier’s Trenton Takes Off Sweepstakes Here. Plus, after entering you’ll receive a coupon for 10% off any flight originating from Trenton.
Now that we’re on the topic of sweepstakes, let’s just keep the momentum going…
Reader, Charles, generously donated a bunch of United free-drink vouchers that expire on 1/31/2013. If any of my readers have an upcoming flight this month on United, and would like a pair, simply leave your itinerary in the comments and I’ll mail you two drink coupons to enjoy. I only have 3 pairs left, so first come, first serve.