Saturday, December 1, 2018

G for Gold!

After years of traveling around on random airlines to random places around Asia, I finally managed to accumulate enough frequent-flier miles on a certain airline to make it to their "Gold tier" (or whatever that means!). Well, this may sound as a bragging post, but well, the intention is not to.

Throughout my working life I have traveled with other people of similar statuses. These people made me aware of my commoner status every time I traveled with them and it always intrigued me about what the benefit actually was. Now that I have experienced it a few times let me summarize:

1) I get priority boarding and priority check-in if I travel that airline - I believe this is the biggest benefit so far that I have noticed. But this only helps if you are traveling at peak hours, are running late for your flight and have not already online checked-in and have a bag to deposit. 99% of my business travel, I check-in online and I don't have a bag to deposit.

2) I get access to lounges at most airports - This was a nice surprise in the beginning. I mean, I could go to most big airports around the world, and as long as I am traveling on that airline they give me free access to their lounges where I can relax and unwind.  However, I can also relax and unwind anywhere in any airport and in most cases I enjoy walking around airports while I am waiting to board, cause I can get some steps, see some random people and gaze at some shops. The added disadvantage of the lounge is - there is free food. However hard I try, I end up eating something and it adds to whatever food I would later have on the aircraft anyway

3) My bags come out first on the carousel at the other end - Again, this benefit is great if you have checked-in baggage and hate to wait. But the nominal waiting for baggage collection these days isn't that annoying for me.

So to summarize, I don't get the fuss. Anyway, now I can pretend to be the snobbish, frequent flying businessman who can look-down upon commoners only till he boards the plane and tucks himself into his economy class seat.

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