Farewell Miles – A Mileage Burning Party with All Nippon Airlines, Thai Airways and Asiana Airlines in Business Class (with a BMI Leg)
Featuring the ANA International 787-8.
Time to bring this trip together and wrap it up. If you’ve made it this far, you’re a brave person. Well done!
Lets look at the Airlines, the accommodation, and then the wrap up before we get on to final trip thoughts.
- BMI For Lufthansa. Amazing service for a short segment and great communication. The staff even wanted to be there for hells teeth sake. For BMI, it’s always been the staff that have made that airline, and this was evident again. I’m going to miss those guys when it is formally game over.
- ANA took a level of service I expect from a business class carrier and blew it away . With the 787 product, they have a winner – though I do fear for the loads and if that FRA-HND is viable in the long term with 46 business class seats and 112 Economy seats and I do fear economies of scale will move in sooner rather than later. Food for thought for ANA.
- Thai Airways whist competent with the service, the safety aspects were worrying. It could had been that crew who just wanted to get on the ground. Doesn’t excuse them from pulling the cabin lights to high and checking the cabin is secure.
- Asiana Airlines did the job once again. There’s a few little rough edges here and there – but nothing of real consequence you can’t overlook. Excellent service and excellent crews.
- Hotel Savigny was a lovely property… but the room was way too hot. Still. It provided a bed, a place to relax and sort myself out before the madness of Asia.
- The Strings by Intercontinental is a really lovely world class hotel with wonderful service and great little touches. If you’re heading to Haneda Airport and are looking for a great Intercontinental property, look no further.
- The Crown Plaza Causeway Bay (Happy Valley) felt like a major cut above what a Crown Plaza is – if anything, it felt more Intercontinental that a Crown Plaza. Great staff, great service – if a pain to get there hiking through Causeway Bay station (although the tram outside the hotel does help. A lot).
- The Ramada Seoul Dongdaemun wasn’t what I expected. And that is… a good thing. Certainly it’s a better stay for those who are doing longer term trips to Seoul with the kitchen, clothes washer, it’s a great property. The only thing that really scared me was the threat of a W10,000 fine for loosing an electronic key….
- Japan and Tokyo were everything I expected to be… and nothing like I expected to be (if that makes any sense). The people were lovely, welcoming (if shy). I could see me going back to Japan in an instant. But I’d want to treble any spending money I assign for Japan. Then Double that amount.
- Hong Kong was its usual bustling self. As well as getting the camera seen to (important), I also managed to get my two “chops” carved at long last – these will both serve me in the future.
- Seoul may be the 2nd biggest metropolis in the world, but I found plenty of quiet points in Seoul this time – even in the markets, it seemed quieter than last time. A lovely dovetail to an amazing trip.
So, Goodbye Miles?
I save my miles from when I do idiot mileage runs around the USA and Canada for that “special occasion” or “special trip”, and with BMI heading the way of the dodo, I took my chance and flew whilst I could. And I make no apology for that. It is the “suffering” in Economy Class that I do so often that allows me to really appreciate business class travel when I take it.
Let me say as well, it is always the journey – never the final destination that matters. Because the final destination is always the front door of my flat. And sometimes, it’s nice to be home after a long trip.
I’ve burned the best part of 100,000 BMI Miles on this trip, and 150,000 Priority Club points on this trip – a big amount by any stretch of the imagination.
But miles and points depreciate. Companies go out of business. Experiences and memories do not leave you as quick, and can change how you think of the world – or how you appreciate the world.
However, just because miles change or devaulate – it’s not an excuse to hang up my travel shoes. I’m sure I’ll accumulate Avios, Miles an More Miles, and a plethora of other currencies that will aid in in travel, and get great experiences.
Because at the end of the day, it’s why I travel – for the experience.
And that concludes Farewell Miles. It’s been a long write up, and there’s one more paragraph left after this. I’d like to thank you for reading and your comments, and of course, I’ll try and answer your questions as soon as possible.
However, enough of the premium flying malarkey. Don’t get me wrong, it’s very nice – far too nice actually. But I’m a sucker for Economy flights (namely my wallet won’t allow much more!) and it’s heading to that time of year when I get my travel shoes on again and head of for the Windy City. So please join me in April for A final Star Hurrah? To Chicago with United Airlines and Air Canada
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