Last weekend I started my nearly 30,000 mile trip around the world on a US Airways First Class Award ticket and an amateur mistake almost cost me the entire trip! My trip started from Mexico City which allowed me to take advantage of on my favorite US Airways award chart gems: Central America/Mexico/Caribbean to South East Asia/Central Asia for 120,000 miles in first. Yet in order to start my trip in Mexico City, I obviously had to position myself in Mexico. Thankfully I fly every week for work and flying to Mexico City instead of home was not in issue. I purchased a oneway ticket on US Airways for only $230. As this was similar to my average oneway ticket cost each week to fly home from work, I was able to expense the cost and fly to Mexico City instead without occurring any additional personal expenses. I then booked a hotel room at the Marriott Courtyard Mexico City Airport for one nights on points (10,000 points) and was set to spend the night, about 5 hours, and then fly out the next morning.
My flight to Mexico City the night before went smoothly and from Phoenix I secured an upgrade thanks to my American Airlines Platinum status. The first class cabin was empty with only three other passengers sitting up front. My flight attendant was awesome, kept everyone’s drinks full and was actually a lot of fun to talk travel with. I then bumped into the cabin crew at immigration and then a few minutes later while checking into the hotel. We laughed that I was stalking them, waved goodbyes and went our own ways. I checked in to my room, asked for a 4:30am wakeup call and went to crash for the night. I had worked all day, flown and it was now 11:30 and I was exhausted.
In the morning, I jumped from bed at 4:28am when the hotel phone started ringing. I was sleeping so hard the noise startled me and I literally almost hit my head on the ceiling. I rubbed my eyes, looked at the time, and realized I was late for my flight! I didn’t want a 4:30 wakeup call, my boarding time was 4:30! What was I thinking the night before? Clearly I had one to many glasses of wine and wasn’t thinking straight when I checked in! I threw on my clothes on from the night before, ran downstairs, ran to the AA ticket counter and got there at 4:33. It was too late and despite having no luggage the agent wouldn’t check me in. I would have checked in online or the night before but AA required my documents to be verified as I was in route to Brazil. I apologized profusely and asked if there was anything she could do and she told me she would have to put me on a different flight to Maimi. Thankfully my flight to Brazil didn’t leave until 7pm, so now my departure from Mexico City would just be later and my lay over in Miami would be shorter. She told me there was no flights with First class seats available the rest of the day and I would have to fly coach instead. I told her this wasn’t an issue, thanked her for being nice enough to rebook me, and then returned to the hotel for a shower and to change, as I now had 2 hours until my flight.
My mistake of oversleeping could have cost me my entire trip, but I was extremely fortunate that the agent rebooked me without any issues. I think in this situation I was fortunate to be flying this segment on AA and not US, as not only do I have status with AA, US would not allow me to make any changes to this reservation after it was ticketed as the routing was illegal. Minutes before departure, a seat in first class became available due to a no show, but instead of upgrading me back to my original class of service, AA upgraded an Executive Platinum flyer on an economy class ticket. I disagree with AA’s logic, but was just happy to be on my way to Miami, where I had a long layover and a lunch date planned for my birthday. A rookie mistake, but a generous agent saved my trip!
More from this trip
- Around the world in First for 120,000 miles
- How much did my 120,000 mile + $300 ticket really cost?
- Rookie Mistakes Could Have Cost Me My Around The World Trip
- Courtyard Airport Hotel – Mexico City
- American Express Centurion lounge Mexico D.F. terminal 1
- American Airlines Admirals Club Mexico D.F.
- American Airlines Premium Lounge Miami
- Saloon VIP Terminal J Miami
- Tam Farewell to First Class B777 Miami (MIA) to Sao Paulo (GRU)
- 15 hours in Sao Paulo 15 Hours In Sao Paulo – Graffiti, History, Laughter, and Caipirinhas
- LAN TAM VIP Lounge Sao Paulo Terminal 3 (GRU)
- TAM “Business” Class B777 Sao Paulo (GRU) to Paris (CDG)
- Marriott Champs-Elysees Paris
- Malaysia Airlines “First class” lounge Paris – ICARE Lounge
- Malaysia Airlines First Class A380 Paris (CDG) to Kuala Lumpur (KUL)
- Malaysia Airlines Golden Lounge Kuala Lumpur (KUL) – First Class lounge
- Malaysia Airlines Kuala Lumpur Regional Golden Lounge Review
- Cathay Pacific First and Business Class lounge Kuala Lumpur (KUL).
- Cathay Pacific Regional Business Class A330 Kuala Lumpur (KUL) to Hong Kong (HKG)
- Cathay Pacific First Class Lounge Hong Kong (HKG)– The Wing
- Cathay Pacific First Class B777 Hong Kong (HKG) to Los Angeles (LAX)