Although there will be plenty of business travel, with the exception of my upcoming final 747 and Qatar QSuite trips, I am voluntarily suspending new “review” trips until next August.
That doesn’t mean I will not be traveling on new products. For example, you can bet that I will do everything in my power to fly the new Singapore A380 Suites on a business trip to Australia early next year. Maybe I’ll do Virgin Australia Business Class in one direction as well. I am sure there will be other opportunities.
But I still have a backlog of old trip reports that need to be published and a startup that is requiring far more time than I had imagined. I work long hours now away from the house and therefore it becomes increasingly difficult to justify even more time away from my family.
Consequently, my next big “review” trip will not be until next August. I want to make it a special one, though, so I am already starting to plan it out.
- Fly my pre-devaluation United award tickets
- Visit at least five new countries
- Fly one “exotic” product
If you recall, the award tickets include flights in Australia, Asia, and Africa. But I need to position to Australia, then position to Africa, and finally position home from Africa. Each positioning trip presents an opportunity.
The award trip starts in Sydney. To get to Australia I am thinking about finally trying out Virgin Australia Business Class if I cannot squeeze it into my earlier business trip. As of now, the carrier still reliably releases last-minute space.
From Australia to Africa on Miles
My first stop in Africa is Maputo, Mozambique…a country I missed visiting during my 2014 month in Africa. I can fly from Perth to Johannesburg on South African or Sydney to to J’Berg on Qantas, but I’m thinking of traveling all the way back to Lisbon then taking TAP Portugal to Maputo, a nonstop flight to the former Portuguese colony. I have yet to review TAP longhaul.
Another option is trying to squeeze in a flight on TAAG Angola First Class and actually spending a few days in Luanda, a city I have been wanting to visit for years.
My booked South African flight is from Johannesburg to Dakar, where I plan to spend a few days. The question is should I visit other West African nations or just hope on an Iberia flight to Madrid then head home. I could also hop on another South African Airways flight to Washington Dulles.
Thus, I am thinking something like this–
Any thoughts on this? There is plenty of time to plan, but I thought I’d put the trip out there now for your commentary. Specifically, getting from Australia to Africa and then what to do once I reach Dakar.