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DansDeals Forum => Up In The Air => Topic started by: @Yehuda on January 26, 2014, 07:43:33 PM

Title: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 26, 2014, 07:43:33 PM
Hey Guys!

After 5 months learning about ccís and collecting miles (and then getting married 2 weeks ago!!!) itís time to book my Israel/Eurotrip for this summer with my wife!!! :D :D Any and all help/advice you can provide will be greatly appreciated. I don't have extensive experience booking award travel, and I definitely don't know the best routes/airlines to go with, so I could really use your help!

Here's what we're working with:
We want to start off in Israel for my cousinís wedding on June 18th (we can leave from EWR/JFK anytime after June 1st). After that, we have no time limit other than trying to finish the trip before the 9 days begin on July 27th. These are the cities we want to see (basically in priority order) and we are completely flexible with dates: (Thoughts on our city choices are also welcome  :) Of course if we're crazy to think we can get to that many places in that amount of time/with just that amount of miles, I'd love to hear it too.)

Major Locations to hit up
England
London (Is that the only place worth visiting? How about Manchester, York, Wales?)
France
Paris (Marseille? Nice? Toulouse?)
Italy
Rome, Venice (Pisa? Milan? Florence?)

Would also like to visit these places
Spain
Madrid, Barcelona
Gibraltar
Netherlands
Amsterdam
Switzerland
Zurich
Belgium
Antwerp (Brussels?)
Greece
Athens

Thoughts on Iceland/Ireland/Scotland/Sweden/Norway/Finland/Denmark?

Hereís what we have to work with (appx combined totals between us):

UR: 80,000
MR: 25,000
SPG: 90,000
AA: 160,000
Lufthansa: 100,000
United: 60,000
Delta: 30,000
Hyatt: 4 nights
Marriott: 70,000
IHG: 80,000

Last 2 points: Her Zaidy awesomely offered to buy us tickets to come visit him in Israel, so we will have cash (not sure how much, I'd assume around $2000) to help towards the flights as well. We would ideally like to fly business/first class over the Atlantic.

Thanks! Can't wait to plan this!!
@Yehuda
Title: Re: Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: philbenjoe on January 26, 2014, 07:47:02 PM
if you got to switzerland, italy, or france you should go see the alps...not sure which country would work best for your trip plans, but something worth looking into.
Title: Re: Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 26, 2014, 07:49:19 PM
if you got to switzerland, italy, or france you should go see the alps...not sure which country would work best for your trip plans, but something worth looking into.

Absolutely. My wife's from Denver so she thinks the Rockies are quite a site (admittedly, they're beautiful) but I think she'll agree the Alps should be on our journey.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: philbenjoe on January 26, 2014, 07:53:46 PM
ive been to vail and the swiss alps and theyre BOTH worth seeing. they are not fully the same...hard to explain. i wouldnt travel from the us special to go there but if your on that side of the world i would definitely go to the alps.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 26, 2014, 08:08:17 PM
ive been to vail and the swiss alps and theyre BOTH worth seeing. they are not fully the same...hard to explain. i wouldnt travel from the us special to go there but if your on that side of the world i would definitely go to the alps.

Been to the Vail in the summer - was still beautiful, but yeah I hear that and we want to see 'em!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ayman on January 26, 2014, 08:12:04 PM
Mazel tov!
and welcome back. Was wondering where you had disappeared to.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ual902 on January 26, 2014, 08:52:32 PM
Mazel Tov,

Fly into ZRH then take a train to  grindelwald probably one of the most scenic parts of the alps and its a cute village, then take  train to Venice> Florence> Rome > amafi coast.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ushdadude on January 26, 2014, 08:56:21 PM
Mazel Tov,

Fly into ZRH then take a train to  grindelwald probably one of the most scenic parts of the alps and its a cute village, then take  train to Venice> Florence> Rome > amafi coast.

+1
there used to be a kosher hotel in grindelwald
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ushdadude on January 26, 2014, 09:00:34 PM
It's very easy to spend a lot of time in each city in Europe. Each has tons of history. That being said, it is also easy to spend only a day or two hitting up all the major spots.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Super Speed on January 26, 2014, 10:09:48 PM
UR: 80,000
MR: 25,000
SPG: 90,000
AA: 160,000
Lufthansa: 100,000
United: 60,000
Delta: 30,000
Hyatt: 4 nights
Marriott: 70,000
IHG: 80,000

Last 2 points: Her Zaidy awesomely offered to buy us tickets to come visit him in Israel, so we will have cash (not sure how much, I'd assume around $2000) to help towards the flights as well. We would ideally like to fly business/first class over the Atlantic.

Thanks! Can't wait to plan this!!
@Yehuda
Also you do have sometime to build up those point bank accounts! ;)

Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 26, 2014, 10:17:59 PM
Mazel tov!
and welcome back. Was wondering where you had disappeared to.

Ha thanks! Yeah once wedding things got serious, I kinda left the forums. Glad to be back

Mazel Tov,

Fly into ZRH then take a train to  grindelwald probably one of the most scenic parts of the alps and its a cute village, then take  train to Venice> Florence> Rome > amafi coast.
+1
there used to be a kosher hotel in grindelwald

Thanks! That sounds like a great section of the journey! So you're thinking to go from TLV-ZRH?

It's very easy to spend a lot of time in each city in Europe. Each has tons of history. That being said, it is also easy to spend only a day or two hitting up all the major spots.

True. We're aiming for the major spots :)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 26, 2014, 10:19:39 PM
Also you do have sometime to build up those point bank accounts! ;)

Ha yeah except I'm running out of cards to open. Plus, I know it's really late, but I wanted to see if there are any ways to use the UA before they devalue.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ckmk47 on January 26, 2014, 11:39:04 PM
Experienced award ticket bookers, now is your time to shine!  Lets hear concrete suggestions!

Plan (in my opinion)  Check out the possible ways to get to Israel.  Go for the wedding, visit Zeidy, and daven enjoy the Holy land. 
Note who can get you home from Europe. 
Mentally set aside the points you need to achieve those goals. Figure out how to hop around Europe most efficiently and how much it will cost.
Then book the going and probably even the coming home.  Then work out the rest.

I propose checking for availability on UA, from NY to TLV.  UR points transfer there. MR or SPG may also. (You can set up to book a UA ticket and hold it until you have the points transferred (but it costs))
Check out Flying Blue for tickets within Europe.  MR points transfer there.
Lufthansa also flies within Europe and may have partners that fly from Europe to back to NY.
I don't know which airlines partner with AA, but BA, an AA partner has several that fly to Europe and Israel.

Good luck, mazal tov and have a successful trip.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ayman on January 26, 2014, 11:39:48 PM
+1
there used to be a kosher hotel in grindelwald
Wasn't he a famous evil wizard? :P
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ushdadude on January 27, 2014, 07:20:16 AM

True. We're aiming for the major spots :)

Almost every major city has a double decker tour bus. I know it's nerdy and really touristy, but it is the fastest way to see all the major spots. Afterwards you can go back (or just hop off) to whichever you want to see in more detail.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 27, 2014, 09:56:30 AM
Almost every major city has a double decker tour bus. I know it's nerdy and really touristy, but it is the fastest way to see all the major spots. Afterwards you can go back (or just hop off) to whichever you want to see in more detail.
+1 makes sense - good idea
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 27, 2014, 01:55:58 PM
Experienced award ticket bookers, now is your time to shine!  Lets hear concrete suggestions!

Plan (in my opinion)  Check out the possible ways to get to Israel.  Go for the wedding, visit Zeidy, and daven enjoy the Holy land. 
Note who can get you home from Europe. 
Mentally set aside the points you need to achieve those goals. Figure out how to hop around Europe most efficiently and how much it will cost.
Then book the going and probably even the coming home.  Then work out the rest.

I propose checking for availability on UA, from NY to TLV.  UR points transfer there. MR or SPG may also. (You can set up to book a UA ticket and hold it until you have the points transferred (but it costs))
Check out Flying Blue for tickets within Europe.  MR points transfer there.
Lufthansa also flies within Europe and may have partners that fly from Europe to back to NY.
I don't know which airlines partner with AA, but BA, an AA partner has several that fly to Europe and Israel.

Good luck, mazal tov and have a successful trip.

Thanks! I appreciate the detailed post.

After researching UA, there are no Saver awards for non-stop flights in the beginning of June (even with expanded availability w/ my UMPE), so standard economy would be 75K and Business 150K. Even if I added my 80K UR to my 65K UA, I would still be short for 2 economy tickets - and, again, we're hoping to go business.

Any other ideas for how to go NYC-TLV business?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 28, 2014, 11:34:13 AM
Ok, thanks to more searching and confirmation from ilherman, going business direct from NYC-TLV is not going to happen. So, how about going to one of the countries first before going to the wedding? Which country do you think makes most sense to go to? Logically, I would think Greece as it's a bit further from the other European countries (so knock it out on its own), but from a quick search only Alitalia/KLM/Delta have that route and I don't have a lot of miles w/ them.

Thoughts? Thanks guys :)
Title: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: efflpetzel on January 28, 2014, 11:41:54 AM
Have you tried doing Plan B to israel?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 28, 2014, 11:47:11 AM
Have you tried doing Plan B to israel?

For Plan B to work, there has to be Saver award availability in economy and there isn't for the entire June. :(
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on January 28, 2014, 12:01:51 PM
I hope you don't plan on spending 75K UA miles to fly OW economy to Isreal.

Also I didn't say its not going to happen! In fact Dan posted a while ago that there was an entire week in Feb wwith direct business availability, though this doesn't usually happen .... Well I flew last year in the summer direct by booking the last minute in July.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 28, 2014, 12:19:32 PM
I hope you don't plan on spending 75K UA miles to fly OW economy to Isreal.

Also I didn't say its not going to happen! In fact Dan posted a while ago that there was an entire week in Feb wwith direct business availability, though this doesn't usually happen .... Well I flew last year in the summer direct by booking the last minute in July.

No, I don't want to spend that. Sorry for the misquote - it's unlikely. Especially since I need to plan a large trip and it would be too risky to wait last minute for a flight to pop up.

Suggestion for where to go on the first NYC-EX flight?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on January 28, 2014, 12:36:35 PM
Depart:
4:11 p.m.
Sun., Jun. 1, 2014
New York/Newark, NJ (EWR - Liberty)
Arrive:
8:51 p.m.
Sun., Jun. 1, 2014
St. John's, NL Canada (YYT)
Flight Time:
3 hr 10 mn   
Flight: UA1621
Aircraft: Boeing 737-700
Meal: Food and Beverages for Purchase
No Special Meal Offered.
See On-Time Performance
View Seats
Change Planes. Connect time in St. John's, NL Canada (YYT) is 1 hour 14 minutes.
Depart:
10:05 p.m.
Sun., Jun. 1, 2014
St. John's, NL Canada (YYT)
Arrive:
6:35 a.m. +1 Day
Mon., Jun. 2, 2014
London, England (LHR - Heathrow)
Flight Time:
5 hr 0 mn

Travel Time:
9 hr 24 mn   
Flight: AC822
Operated by Air Canada.
Aircraft: Airbus A319
Meal: None
See On-Time Performance


In business to LHR
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 28, 2014, 12:50:28 PM
Depart:
4:11 p.m.
Sun., Jun. 1, 2014
New York/Newark, NJ (EWR - Liberty)
Arrive:
8:51 p.m.
Sun., Jun. 1, 2014
St. John's, NL Canada (YYT)
Flight Time:
3 hr 10 mn   
Flight: UA1621
Aircraft: Boeing 737-700
Meal: Food and Beverages for Purchase
No Special Meal Offered.
See On-Time Performance
View Seats
Change Planes. Connect time in St. John's, NL Canada (YYT) is 1 hour 14 minutes.
Depart:
10:05 p.m.
Sun., Jun. 1, 2014
St. John's, NL Canada (YYT)
Arrive:
6:35 a.m. +1 Day
Mon., Jun. 2, 2014
London, England (LHR - Heathrow)
Flight Time:
5 hr 0 mn

Travel Time:
9 hr 24 mn   
Flight: AC822
Operated by Air Canada.
Aircraft: Airbus A319
Meal: None
See On-Time Performance


In business to LHR

Cool, thanks for looking it up! What kind/how many miles are we talking about?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ushdadude on January 28, 2014, 12:58:13 PM
if you can actually stop in YYT for a few hours i would HIGHLY RECOMMEND it.
Gros Morne National Park is gorgeous!!!!


Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ushdadude on January 28, 2014, 01:00:36 PM
if you can actually stop in YYT for a few hours i would HIGHLY RECOMMEND it.
Gros Morne National Park is gorgeous!!!!

Actually, it's a little far from the airport but there are other places worth seeing!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 28, 2014, 01:10:55 PM
Actually, it's a little far from the airport but there are other places worth seeing!

Let's save Canada for another trip ;)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ushdadude on January 28, 2014, 01:14:25 PM
Let's save Canada for another trip ;)

Fair enough. I did a road trip through the entire NE Canada (New Brunswick, PEI, Nova Scotia, and Newfoundland. When you get around to it, PM me.  :)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 28, 2014, 02:31:47 PM
Fair enough. I did a road trip through the entire NE Canada (New Brunswick, PEI, Nova Scotia, and Newfoundland. When you get around to it, PM me.  :)

Haha will do, that's awesome!

Can anyone confirm this - I think I remember Dan once posting that the 50K from Lufthansa cc is enough for a business ticket NYC-Europe. Is that true? Am I making that up?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 28, 2014, 10:56:49 PM
Okay, we're making progress!

I found a business saver (UA 50K) LGA-BOS-FRA which could work ( + the first class FRA terminal). US Airways to BOS and Lufthansa to FRA.

Then I found on ITA that Lufthansa flies direct from FRA to TLV at a time that would work, but how do I find it on united.com to see how many miles it will be?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on January 28, 2014, 11:22:48 PM
You don't get first class terminal access if you're flying in business
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on January 28, 2014, 11:37:26 PM
Okay, we're making progress!

I found a business saver (UA 50K) LGA-BOS-FRA which could work ( + the first class FRA terminal). US Airways to BOS and Lufthansa to FRA.

Then I found on ITA that Lufthansa flies direct from FRA to TLV at a time that would work, but how do I find it on united.com to see how many miles it will be?
27,500 in business class. 17,500 in economy.

For what dates are you looking?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 28, 2014, 11:43:47 PM
You don't get first class terminal access if you're flying in business

Ooo ok, oh well.

27,500 in business class. 17,500 in economy.

For what dates are you looking?

It leaves LGA on 6/10 and gets to FRA on 6/11 Thanks for the mileage info. I'd have to move UR and MR/SPG over to UA to make it happen.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on January 28, 2014, 11:45:25 PM
When do you wonna leave FRA?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on January 28, 2014, 11:48:54 PM
Why don't you book FRA as a stop over and fly everything for 60K? (either book a RT for 120K, or HUCA until a rep is willing to get you a free stop over on a OW)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Devorah on January 29, 2014, 01:29:49 AM
MR doesn't transfer to UA and I believe not worth transferring SPG to UA as its 2:1
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 29, 2014, 09:21:21 AM
MR doesn't transfer to UA and I believe not worth transferring SPG to UA as its 2:1

Thanks for the info

Why don't you book FRA as a stop over and fly everything for 60K? (either book a RT for 120K, or HUCA until a rep is willing to get you a free stop over on a OW)

I want to leave right away. FRA isn't on our to-do list, so I just want it as a stopover to TLV. There are no business savers from NYC-FRA-TLV so I need to book it in pieces. I only want OW bc we'll be going back to NY from some other country, not Israel. I also can't just book a OW NYC-TLV and then ask for a stopover, bc there are no business savers NYC-TLV...
That's why I was looking at just getting to FRA business (which exists if I stop in BOS) and then trying to get a diff flight from FRA-TLV. In addition to having trouble finding a UA flight FRA-TLV, I find that only UA (like SWA) barely charges fees, everything else (AA, BA, Lufthansa) seems to add hundreds of $ as fees.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on January 29, 2014, 09:29:08 AM
Thanks for the info

I want to leave right away. FRA isn't on our to-do list, so I just want it as a stopover to TLV. There are no business savers from NYC-FRA-TLV so I need to book it in pieces. I only want OW bc we'll be going back to NY from some other country, not Israel. I also can't just book a OW NYC-TLV and then ask for a stopover, bc there are no business savers NYC-TLV...
That's why I was looking at just getting to FRA business (which exists if I stop in BOS) and then trying to get a diff flight from FRA-TLV. In addition to having trouble finding a UA flight FRA-TLV, I find that only UA (like SWA) barely charges fees, everything else (AA, BA, Lufthansa) seems to add hundreds of $ as fees.
There is lots of avail FRA - TLV with stopovers.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on January 29, 2014, 09:31:03 AM
Also did you check Brussels or LOT if they have avail, you have to check them on AC.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 29, 2014, 10:12:29 AM
Also did you check Brussels or LOT if they have avail, you have to check them on AC.

Ooo didn't realize that's what you meant, yes I see that availability. That won't be just 60K (it'll be 50+17.5) and I won't have enough miles... Also, isn't that gna be annoying though? NYC-BOS-FRA-EX-TLV? Is that just what I'm going to have to do to go business?

Can you help with AC search? I can't find a way to view award avail. and it also only shows flights going FRA-YYZ-TLV lol
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 29, 2014, 10:42:42 AM
Here's an option:

The same NYC-BOS-FRA for 50K UA + $5 fees
and then FRA-TLV on Elal for 30K AA plus $93 fees and $25 ticketing fee (will try to get waived, if possible)

Everything is business. (FRA-TLV was just 10K more for business over economy)

With Zaidy's money, paying a total of $246 shouldn't be a big deal...
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on January 29, 2014, 10:47:16 AM
Not true. You can do a OW JFK-BOS-FRA-TLV for 60K, as long you're not stopping more then 24 hours (4 hours domestic)

About the annoying part you have to decide what you want, there would be people enjoying such trip, checking out 3 city's just as a btw.......

just sign up for a AC mileage account and you'll be able to search.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Excalibur on January 29, 2014, 10:55:03 AM
AA to Europe oj plus trailing domestic seems like best idea for getting to Europe. Also Avios from Europe to tlv should be easy to find dive you're traveling around and could just adjust your departure point
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 29, 2014, 11:03:09 AM
Not true. You can do a OW JFK-BOS-FRA-TLV for 60K, as long you're not stopping more then 24 hours (4 hours domestic)

About the annoying part you have to decide what you want, there would be people enjoying such trip, checking out 3 city's just as a btw.......

just sign up for a AC mileage account and you'll be able to search.

How could I book that? That kinda combination would never show up on united.com
If we keep each stop so short, we can't really check out the 3 cities ;) It's kinda funny bc I have like 10 stops we'd like to see but those aren't the ones that work well with getting to TLV.

I'll look into AC now.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 29, 2014, 11:22:16 AM
Still can't figure it out... I made an aeroplan account, but nothing changes in the search results on AC.com
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on January 29, 2014, 12:08:04 PM
How could I book that? That kinda combination would never show up on united.com
If we keep each stop so short, we can't really check out the 3 cities ;) It's kinda funny bc I have like 10 stops we'd like to see but those aren't the ones that work well with getting to TLV.

I'll look into AC now.
PUTPAC. 23 hours is not so little to check out a city.....
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 29, 2014, 12:40:17 PM
PUTPAC. 23 hours is not so little to check out a city.....

Wow 25 min wait time. Yuch. Anyway, if I'm going to make stops to see the city, shouldn't it be cities that I wanted to go to anyway? While I wait on hold, I'm going to see if there are any options for flights to some of the other cities on my list.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on January 29, 2014, 12:42:05 PM
http://www.dansdeals.com/archives/20506
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 29, 2014, 12:52:20 PM
http://www.dansdeals.com/archives/20506

Wow, that was amazing. I've actually seen that post, but forgot about it. Wow, I'm already on the phone with them!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on January 29, 2014, 12:54:12 PM
You should have this bookmarked! It's one of the best things I've picked up here.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 29, 2014, 01:23:26 PM
lol

Okay, I'm on the phone with them now. It's funny how I'm finding flights better than she is, but she's helping me figure out how to combine it all under a 60K biz flight - which apparently I could have done if I clicked "Multiple Destinations or Point by Point". And technically, it can all happen ----

LGA-BOS-FRA-MUC-TLV all on business and for 60K and $72 per person
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on January 29, 2014, 01:27:04 PM
Sounds crazy to me. That's a lot of stops
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 29, 2014, 01:43:40 PM
Sounds crazy to me. That's a lot of stops

I agree that it's a lot of stops (especially since a day ago I wanted to go direct), but there are 2 legs that I can't seem to find direct on business:

NYC-EUROPE
EUROPE-TLV

Because of that, I need a stopover before and after Europe... but I'm still searching!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on January 29, 2014, 01:48:23 PM
Sounds crazy to me. That's a lot of stops
Me in his shoes, I would stop in each city for 23 hours, enjoy life! Now with 2 kids a vacation is so much more complicated.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 29, 2014, 02:01:03 PM
Me in his shoes, I would stop in each city for 23 hours, enjoy life! Now with 2 kids a vacation is so much more complicated.

The 23 hours thing isn't so clear cut/easy. I spoke to the rep and you basically have to take a flight before midnight of the same day you arrive. So when you arrive at 1PM and the last flight out is 10PM, it's not so many hours once you consider getting out of the airport/to your site visit and getting back to the airport to do whatever checkin/security is necessary. (I assume something is necessary once you leave the airport.)

How's this other idea I just found:
EWR-ZUR-TLV Sounds a lot better, right? Only issue is that EWR-ZUR has only economy saver (but it's a United flight), so I would have to do Plan B. Is it worth the risk?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: HP58 on January 29, 2014, 02:03:40 PM
The 23 hours thing isn't so clear cut/easy. I spoke to the rep and you basically have to take a flight before midnight of the same day you arrive. So when you arrive at 1PM and the last flight out is 10PM, it's not so many hours once you consider getting out of the airport/to your site visit and getting back to the airport to do whatever checkin/security is necessary. (I assume something is necessary once you leave the airport.)

How's this other idea I just found:
EWR-ZUR-TLV Sounds a lot better, right? Only issue is that EWR-ZUR has only economy saver (but it's a United flight), so I would have to do Plan B. Is it worth the risk?
How many miles would that be Economy?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on January 29, 2014, 02:04:21 PM
The 23 hours thing isn't so clear cut/easy. I spoke to the rep and you basically have to take a flight before midnight of the same day you arrive. So when you arrive at 1PM and the last flight out is 10PM, it's not so many hours once you consider getting out of the airport/to your site visit and getting back to the airport to do whatever checkin/security is necessary. (I assume something is necessary once you leave the airport.)

How's this other idea I just found:
EWR-ZUR-TLV Sounds a lot better, right? Only issue is that EWR-ZUR has only economy saver (but it's a United flight), so I would have to do Plan B. Is it worth the risk?
AFAIK this is BS. ask in the UA award thread.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 29, 2014, 02:08:45 PM
How many miles would that be Economy?

Well it's 30K for that leg but under Plan B you book the regular 60K and are assigned a coach seat until biz avail. opens up.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Dr Moose on January 29, 2014, 02:12:04 PM
AFAIK this is BS.
+1
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: HP58 on January 29, 2014, 02:19:01 PM
Well it's 30K for that leg but under Plan B you book the regular 60K and are assigned a coach seat until biz avail. opens up.
And lets say biz doesn't open up? Do you get 30k back? What's their cancellation policy?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on January 29, 2014, 02:37:13 PM
What about this?

LOT Polish Airlines LO27
 
Departs : Mon. Jun 222:55New York Kennedy (JFK)
 
Arrives : Tue. Jun 313:05Warsaw (WAW)
 
BUSINESS
788Complimentary mealFlight Duration : 8h 10 min
 
Change plane in WarsawTime to connect :  9h 50 min
 
 
 
LOT Polish Airlines LO151
 
Departs : Tue. Jun 322:55Warsaw (WAW)
 
Arrives : Wed. Jun 403:50Tel Aviv (TLV)
 
BUSINESS
Boeing 737-400 Meal Not availableFlight Duration : 3h 55 min
 
Total travel time : 21h 55min
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on January 29, 2014, 02:40:59 PM
Or better this


Brussels Airlines SN502
 
Departs : Tue. Jun 317:55New York Kennedy (JFK)
 
Arrives : Wed. Jun 407:20Brussels (BRU)
 
BUSINESS
Airbus A330-300Complimentary mealFlight Duration : 7h 25 min
 
Change plane in BrusselsTime to connect :  2h 10 min
 
 
 
Brussels Airlines SN3289
 
Departs : Wed. Jun 409:30Brussels (BRU)
 
Arrives : Wed. Jun 415:00Tel Aviv (TLV)
 
BUSINESS
Airbus A319Complimentary mealFlight Duration : 4h 30 min
 
Total travel time : 14h 05min
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on January 29, 2014, 02:42:11 PM
UA search sucks, Aeroplan rocks!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 29, 2014, 03:17:59 PM
And lets say biz doesn't open up? Do you get 30k back? What's their cancellation policy?

Yes, you get your 30K back. Google "United Plan B" first link will be Dan's main site post about Plan B.

UA search sucks, Aeroplan rocks!

So, if it's not in 1 of the cities I want to see anyway, I'm fine with not having the 23 hour stopover (I trust you that it's true ;) ).
The LOT flight looks very long (Mon-Weds)
The Brussels flight looks impressive! Why won't it show up on United.com?


Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on January 29, 2014, 03:22:06 PM
Because they suck :)

Just PUTPAC UA and have it booked!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 29, 2014, 03:47:37 PM
Because they suck :)

Just PUTPAC UA and have it booked!

On it! 2 issues:
- JFK is a little hard for me b/c I need somewhere to put my car for a month (I live in Manhattan). I have a place in NJ I could leave it and probably Queens too, so EWR/LGA are a bit easier, but I guess I can figure that out.
- Once I'm going to Brussels, which is on my list of places, wouldn't it be worth it to try and stay for a little bit? Did you notice any later connecting flights? It gets in at 6AM so that would leave plenty of time to enjoy the 23 hours. I lost my aeroplan number (already! - why didn't they email it to me!? lol) so I can't search their site but I see on BrusselsAirlines.com that there's a 6:45PM flight to TLV. Maybe I can get on that and then have a day in Brussels.

Oh, and yes, I called United and reserved the last 2 seats on the flight! :) Thank you, Sir ilherman!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 29, 2014, 04:09:05 PM
Just called - no problem!

So, we have JFK-BRU-TLV business 60K + $27 per person.
I arrive in Brussels at 7:20 and leave at 6:45.

Already scouring the Brussels TR to see what to do. SuperFlyer has GREAT stuff there!

Time to move all my 60K UR to UA! Any last thoughts why this is not worth it? #nervous
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: MEIR613 on January 29, 2014, 04:13:01 PM
Just called - no problem!

So, we have JFK-BRU-TLV business 60K + $27 per person.
I arrive in Brussels at 7:20 and leave at 6:45.

Already scouring the Brussels TR to see what to do. SuperFlyer has GREAT stuff there!

Time to move all my 60K UR to UA! Any last thoughts why this is not worth it? #nervous
Do it, if dates work for you.

JFK-BRU is a great seat.

Best way to burn your UA/UR pre deval.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on January 29, 2014, 04:15:10 PM
Just called - no problem!

So, we have JFK-BRU-TLV business 60K + $27 per person.
I arrive in Brussels at 7:20 and leave at 6:45.

Already scouring the Brussels TR to see what to do. SuperFlyer has GREAT stuff there!

Time to move all my 60K UR to UA! Any last thoughts why this is not worth it? #nervous
I feel accomplished as well!  :)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 29, 2014, 04:16:25 PM
Do it, if dates work for you.

JFK-BRU is a great seat.

Best way to burn your UA/UR pre deval.

Thnx. June 3-4 is well before the wedding on the 18th, but hey - can't complain about too much time in Eretz Yisrael, can you??
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 29, 2014, 04:30:35 PM
I feel accomplished as well!  :)

You should! Thanks for all your help. You really got me on my way - first leg of Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon almost booked!!! And of course a thank you to Dan, as I'm not in this situation at all w/o him. Which reminds me, thanks G-d! :)

Point transfer underway!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 29, 2014, 06:02:02 PM
Points transferred successfully!
Flight booked 120K miles and ~$50! Phone reservations fees waived!

Time to take a breather for a day or 2 before we move on. Oh, and the wife's happy! :)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 29, 2014, 07:41:27 PM
OMG OMG OMG IT'S SHAVUOS!!!!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Dr Moose on January 29, 2014, 07:50:22 PM
ouch.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on January 29, 2014, 07:52:35 PM
Within 24 hours. Call and cancel for free
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 29, 2014, 08:12:00 PM
Just cancelled. This flight is not available again until the 17th, landing the 18th - same day as the wedding (and we wouldn't have the day to tour Belgium). So, yeah kinda risky...

Just cancelled the flight. :( Can't believe it. Meant to be.

Back to the drawing board, hey I can always still go LGA-BOS-FRA-MUC-TLV ;)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: username on January 29, 2014, 08:41:14 PM
On it! 2 issues:
- JFK is a little hard for me b/c I need somewhere to put my car for a month (I live in Manhattan). I have a place in NJ I could leave it and probably Queens too, so EWR/LGA are a bit easier, but I guess I can figure that out.
- Once I'm going
for the parking issue, use uber   I think dan has alink somewhere on the main site for it.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Dr Moose on January 29, 2014, 08:43:06 PM
IIRC you need to sign up by friday
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 29, 2014, 08:46:45 PM
Thanks, we'll hopefully be able to find a friend to take us to the airport.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on January 29, 2014, 09:04:37 PM
Got it!!! United rep was awesome - literally looking up flights from every country and with looking at my crazy reservation of:
LGA-BOS-FRA-MUC-TLV
she was able to find a direct EWR-FRA!!

So we're confirmed: June 10-11
EWR-FRA-MUC-TLV all Lufthansa business 120K + $140

Phew, hopefuly iy"h this is okay and works. It's an extra flight, but the JFK-BRU-TLV was really a treat, so this is okay.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SamKey on January 31, 2014, 03:00:22 PM
Well it's 30K for that leg but under Plan B you book the regular 60K and are assigned a coach seat until biz avail. opens up.
This is what I just did
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: MoGro17 on February 02, 2014, 10:13:25 AM
OMG OMG OMG IT'S SHAVUOS!!!!
This was, without a doubt, the climax of the thread.  ;D ;D
I was so pumped for the brussels trip!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Eli+ on February 02, 2014, 04:24:05 PM
Points transferred successfully!
Flight booked 120K miles and ~$50! Phone reservations fees waived!

Time to take a breather for a day or 2 before we move on. Oh, and the wife's happy! :)

When do we start chapter 2 ? We are all on the edge of our seats.. ;D
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 02, 2014, 07:01:21 PM
AA to Europe oj plus trailing domestic seems like best idea for getting to Europe. Also Avios from Europe to tlv should be easy to find dive you're traveling around and could just adjust your departure point

Sorry never responded. Didn't really understand what you were suggesting, but bh that leg has worked out.

This was, without a doubt, the climax of the thread.  ;D ;D
I was so pumped for the brussels trip!

Glad you found the thread! Sry didn't see ur request for a link. Yeah, too bad, but glad a flight still worked out.

When do we start chapter 2 ? We are all on the edge of our seats.. ;D

Ha, thanks! Will start tomorrow morning! Watching the game now.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 03, 2014, 01:15:11 PM
OK, and we're back!
Just added a wiki to keep track of remaining point balances and destinations.

So, I want to leave Israel on June 22. Where to next? What's the best way to decide that? Find which airlines go direct to one of the cities on the list? Figure out which city makes sense to fly to and then plot a train route to go to others?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: deal boy on February 04, 2014, 04:01:00 AM
What's with France any great places to see there besides Paris and did u find out if its all saf?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Drago on February 04, 2014, 04:18:10 AM
I haven't read the thread yet, but the AA explorer award can be a great way for you to spend multiple days in various European cities.
See this post for an example of what's possible.
http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=18280.msg567112#msg567112
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 04, 2014, 10:32:41 AM
What's with France any great places to see there besides Paris and did u find out if its all saf?

I haven't found out much yet, but check out the France trip reports.

I haven't read the thread yet, but the AA explorer award can be a great way for you to spend multiple days in various European cities.
See this post for an example of what's possible.
http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=18280.msg567112#msg567112
Interesting, I'll have to browse FT. Thanks!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Drago on February 04, 2014, 11:23:19 AM
Interesting, I'll have to browse FT. Thanks!
No need to browse there, as the rules aren't too complicated.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 04, 2014, 11:25:37 AM
No need to browse there, as the rules aren't too complicated.

Well I read through their wiki also. Now, I'll start playing with it.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: deal boy on February 04, 2014, 01:15:38 PM
florence is really fun plus they have have a small kosher restaurant there its basically on the way from venice to rome by train it really gives a different roman feeling than rome and venice less commercial
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: deal boy on February 04, 2014, 01:18:13 PM
also if you are going to london you can take a fast train (like 2.5 hours or something) to amsterdam which is really awesome  they have the hieniken factory there and the ann franf house (make reservations really early for that) and the whole place is really cool
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: MC on February 04, 2014, 01:23:24 PM
In France we rented a car and drove up north to Normandie. The drive was beautiful and the beaches even more amazing! Also not as far from Paris as Marseilles...
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 04, 2014, 02:16:43 PM
Cool ideas! I will most likely need trains at some point so that will definitely help.

Right now I started checking out this OneWorld Explorer Award. If I fly under 10,000 miles (which seems doable between TLV-touring Europe-NYC) it will be 70K per person, which I have enough for. So, the first step seems to be to see which cities OW has routes in. I'm using the http://onw.innosked.com/?show=MAP (http://onw.innosked.com/?show=MAP) to help with that - picking a city I want to go to and seeing all cities they fly to from there. Once I have my Excel sheet completed, I can see which route makes sense. I'm also using http://www.gcmap.com/ (http://www.gcmap.com/) to help visualize what the route would look like. A friend who did a Eurotrip said going East-West makes most sense, leaving Israel and heading back towards America.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 04, 2014, 03:46:18 PM
I also created this map from zeemaps.com (http://zeemaps.com) to lay out the pins of where I want to go. Check it out here https://www.zeemaps.com/map?group=835709&location=Europe# (https://www.zeemaps.com/map?group=835709&location=Europe#). You can see the legend on the bottom, which explains what destinations are choice 1, 2, 3.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on February 04, 2014, 03:58:41 PM
Pisa?

If you have any questions about scotland, feel free to ask
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Drago on February 04, 2014, 03:59:05 PM
Typically, you'd have to do hub - x - hub flying when building your itin.
So the hubs of OW in Europe include VIE, various cities in Germany w/ AB, MAD and BCN w/ IB, and LHR w/ BA.
FinnAir is also in OW.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 04, 2014, 04:02:31 PM
Pisa?

If you have any questions about scotland, feel free to ask

Leaning Tower of Pisa. Friend just told me it's a day trip with a hike called cinqa terra.

Thanks, if we can fit it in, will definitely do!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 04, 2014, 04:08:26 PM
Typically, you'd have to do hub - x - hub flying when building your itin.
So the hubs of OW in Europe include VIE, various cities in Germany w/ AB, MAD and BCN w/ IB, and LHR w/ BA.
FinnAir is also in OW.

Right, so that's going to be a bit annoying. In OW, TLV only has direct to LHR and MAD. So, let's say for example this could work: TLV-MAD-BCN-MAD(connection only)-ORY-LHR-VCE... but then I'm stuck in Venice. Any other legs would require going out of the way to a hub to get on to the next city. And then it will keep being, like you said, hub - x - hub.

Maybe this OW Explorer isn't a great idea for Europe...
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Marco Polo on February 04, 2014, 04:09:37 PM
Right, so that's going to be a bit annoying. In OW, TLV only has direct to LHR and MAD. So, let's say for example this could work: TLV-MAD-BCN-MAD(connection only)-ORY-LHR-VCE... but then I'm stuck in Venice. Any other legs would require going out of the way to a hub to get on to the next city. And then it will keep being, like you said, hub - x - hub.

Maybe this OW Explorer isn't a great idea for Europe...
I think you are allowed an open jaw on explorer award. Maybe you can use BA to get to a different city and continue from there.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 04, 2014, 04:14:59 PM
I think you are allowed an open jaw on explorer award. Maybe you can use BA to get to a different city and continue from there.

I'm searching on the whole OW route map and nothing is showing up connecting these random cities, which leads me to believe BA doesn't fly those routes either.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Marco Polo on February 04, 2014, 04:18:48 PM
I'm searching on the whole OW route map and nothing is showing up connecting these random cities, which leads me to believe BA doesn't fly those routes either.
Where you looking to go after Venice?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 04, 2014, 04:21:38 PM
Where you looking to go after Venice?

That was just an example, but let's say Rome, Zurich or Amsterdam.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Drago on February 04, 2014, 04:37:59 PM
First off, you can fly direct to VIE on Niki, and a few cities in Germany w/ AB, along with MAD (maybe BCN as well) and LON.
And don't use the OW tool. Just check each segment you want on BAs website.

Kapeesh?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SamKey on February 04, 2014, 04:56:56 PM
I'm searching on the whole OW route map and nothing is showing up connecting these random cities, which leads me to believe BA doesn't fly those routes either.
IINM you have to search through IB
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 04, 2014, 05:02:56 PM
First off, you can fly direct to VIE on Niki, and a few cities in Germany w/ AB, along with MAD (maybe BCN as well) and LON.
And don't use the OW tool. Just check each segment you want on BAs website.

Kapeesh?

No I do not Kapeesh. VIE and Germany on not on our itinerary. I used BA.com as well, same results.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 04, 2014, 05:17:00 PM
IINM you have to search through IB

There we go! There are flights from BAR to other destinations besides MAD. Gonna use ITA to see everywhere IB goes direct from BAR. Perhaps they also have routes originating in other cities besides MAD and BAR.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 04, 2014, 06:07:37 PM
There we go! There are flights from BAR to other destinations besides MAD. Gonna use ITA to see everywhere IB goes direct from BAR. Perhaps they also have routes originating in other cities besides MAD and BAR.

According to ITA, OW flies direct between TLV and BAR (not just MAD as OW map suggests and by BAR I, of course, have been meaning BCN, hehe). BCN flies to ZRH, BRU, MXP, NCE, FCO, AMS, CDG, ORY, and the list goes on. I haven't even checked where MAD goes. So, you guys are correct that OW is not the place to search for routes. I should have known that. I guess next step is to decide which of these routes to start with and that will be based on what the most logical next stop would be:
TLV-LHR
TLV-MAD
TLV-BCN
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on February 04, 2014, 07:32:17 PM
According to ITA, OW flies direct between TLV and BAR (not just MAD as OW map suggests and by BAR I, of course, have been meaning BCN, hehe). BCN flies to ZRH, BRU, MXP, NCE, FCO, AMS, CDG, ORY, and the list goes on. I haven't even checked where MAD goes. So, you guys are correct that OW is not the place to search for routes. I should have known that. I guess next step is to decide which of these routes to start with and that will be based on what the most logical next stop would be:
TLV-LHR
TLV-MAD
TLV-BCN
I think it makes sense tlv-bcn-mad-cdg. Train to Amsterdam then to lhr. Fly lhr-fco. Drive through Italy. End up in Venice and fly home
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 04, 2014, 09:17:01 PM
I think it makes sense tlv-bcn-mad-cdg. Train to Amsterdam then to lhr. Fly lhr-fco. Drive through Italy. End up in Venice and fly home

Thanks that makes a lot of sense. I want to maximize the the Explorer award once I'm going for it. Do you think I can "pause" it at CDG and then continue it at LHR? Is that what an open jaw means?

This is what I came up with TLV-MAD-BCN(that order doesn't matter)-CDG-MRS-NCE-DUS(connection)-AMS then train/bus to BRU-LHR-DUB-LHR(connection)-VCE then train VCE-FLR-PSA-FCO then fly FCO-NYC. FCO has directs to NY, VCE doesn't. I just realized I left ZRH out of that equation, so I still want to play with it more, but I think this hits up more cities and gets more out of the Explorer award.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Marco Polo on February 04, 2014, 09:43:32 PM
Thanks that makes a lot of sense. I want to maximize the the Explorer award once I'm going for it. Do you think I can "pause" it at CDG and then continue it at LHR? Is that what an open jaw means?

This is what I came up with TLV-MAD-BCN(that order doesn't matter)-CDG-MRS-NCE-DUS(connection)-AMS then train/bus to BRU-LHR-DUB-LHR(connection)-VCE then train VCE-FLR-PSA-FCO then fly FCO-NYC. FCO has directs to NY, VCE doesn't. I just realized I left ZRH out of that equation, so I still want to play with it more, but I think this hits up more cities and gets more out of the Explorer award.
Remember that you probably need accommodations wherever you go. While that can always be booked later on, just might want to keep it in mind while planning.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Drago on February 04, 2014, 11:15:43 PM
And you need to ensure that there is award availability on each leg, and the ex-TLV leg may be a bit tough.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 04, 2014, 11:34:52 PM
Remember that you probably need accommodations wherever you go. While that can always be booked later on, just might want to keep it in mind while planning.

Right. I plan to use the Hyatt, Marriot, IC and SPG points for the nights. So far my calendar has it at appx 24 nights, so that should be doable.

And you need to ensure that there is award availability on each leg, and the ex-TLV leg may be a bit tough.
Yeah, that's definitely the next thing to figure out. I just wanted to come up with potential routes first. ex-TLV is already booked as per earlier in the thread. I assume you mean TLV-ex and yeah you're right, that'll probably be the hardest to confirm. Will start calling AA as I continue planning different route options.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on February 05, 2014, 12:04:15 AM
Lol, ex-TLV means departing TLV
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SamKey on February 05, 2014, 12:08:21 AM
Btw you may need points in the IB account if you're booking through them and in order to transfer  Avios BA to IB you'll need an open IB account for 3 months so if you don't have one yet open it now
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 05, 2014, 12:29:17 AM
Lol, ex-TLV means departing TLV

Lol whoops.

Btw you may need points in the IB account if you're booking through them and in order to transfer  Avios BA to IB you'll need an open IB account for 3 months so if you don't have one yet open it now
Isn't the whole thing supposed to be booked on AA?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Drago on February 05, 2014, 12:36:48 AM
Keep an eye on IHG PointsBreaks to see if that'll help you once the date is closer.
Also, the Club Carlson 1 night free can be very helpful, especially in Europe.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SamKey on February 05, 2014, 02:17:51 AM
Isn't the whole thing supposed to be booked on AA?
I don't know routing thought you were going to use Avios as they can be useful in Europe (MAD-BCN-4.5k))
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: HP58 on February 05, 2014, 02:34:21 AM
Btw you may need points in the IB account if you're booking through them and in order to transfer  Avios BA to IB you'll need an open IB account for 3 months so if you don't have one yet open it now
You need that the IB account should have miles in it for 3 months before transferring BA?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: MEIR613 on February 05, 2014, 07:34:24 AM
You need that the IB account should have miles in it for 3 months before transferring BA?
Yes
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 05, 2014, 08:19:31 AM
Right now, I'm still trying to get a OneWorld Explorer Award to work out which would be 80K per person for the entire TLV-everything in between-NYC if I can keep it under 10K actual miles travelled. I would only need AA miles for that.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 05, 2014, 01:13:59 PM
Okay and this plan is slowly dying... Been on the phone with AA and IB today. It's one thing to find a route that has flights but it's another thing to find one that has award availability as Drago has pointed out. :-/
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on February 05, 2014, 01:20:48 PM
Start with TLV-MAD 6/23 in business @ 25k avios/passenger
Plenty of flights MAD-BCN @4.5 K avios/pax
Plenty of flight BCN-LHR @7.5K avios/pax
Train LHR-AMS-CDG-LHR
LHR-VCE July 8 7.5K avios/pax
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 05, 2014, 01:38:11 PM
Start with TLV-MAD 6/23 in business @ 25k avios/passenger
Plenty of flights MAD-BCN @4.5 K avios/pax
Plenty of flight BCN-LHR @7.5K avios/pax
Train LHR-AMS-CDG-LHR
LHR-VCE July 8 7.5K avios/pax

I don't have that many avios... and if it really takes 3 months to transfer BA avios to IB avios, you think avail. would still be there in 3 months?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: HP58 on February 05, 2014, 02:11:42 PM
I don't have that many avios...
Are you in the first year of your BA card? Then you can earn another 50k bonus by spending 20k/year...
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 05, 2014, 02:15:47 PM
Are you in the first year of your BA card? Then you can earn another 50k bonus by spending 20k/year...

My card is already inactive. Even that, I have 2 BBs so it would still take 2 months to get 20K + 3 months to transfer points.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SamKey on February 05, 2014, 03:22:01 PM
It didn't take 3 months the IB account had to be open for 3 months
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 05, 2014, 03:26:01 PM
It didn't take 3 months the IB account had to be open for 3 months
Oh ok, but I still don't have an IB account. Hmmm.

I could technically start using different points and change the order of the destinations. A little LH here, some BA there....
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 05, 2014, 04:50:34 PM
Well this is interesting. I called AA again and learned a few things. An agent's award search capacity is much more expanded than yours or mine on AA.com. For ex. on aa.com you can't see IB award availability. Another interesting thing is that the agent can only search 1 airline at a time - I can't really believe that, maybe HUCA will solve that. Anyway, the agent found some flights that the last agent didn't find. So I guess I'll keep calling to see what else can be done.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ckmk47 on February 05, 2014, 06:32:06 PM
[What's IB?  (I did try to back track in the thread, but didn't find it.)]
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Marco Polo on February 05, 2014, 06:35:04 PM
[What's IB?  (I did try to back track in the thread, but didn't find it.)]
Iberia.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 06, 2014, 12:33:29 AM
Another phone call with AA and the result was blah. :(

I just want to go TLV-MAD-BCN-LHR-DUB-LHR-AMS-BRU-ZRH-CDG-MRS-NCE-VCE-FCO-EWR why is it so hard to find availability???

 ;D
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Drago on February 06, 2014, 12:41:14 AM
Okay and this plan is slowly dying... Been on the phone with AA and IB today. It's one thing to find a route that has flights but it's another thing to find one that has award availability as Drago has pointed out. :-/
I'm kinda surprised since inter-European flights are often wide open (at least on *A).
Can you tell us of some examples of what you're not seeing available? And are you checking availability on BA.com?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 06, 2014, 12:43:56 AM
I'm kinda surprised since inter-European flights are often wide open (at least on *A).
Can you tell us of some examples of what you're not seeing available? And are you checking availability on BA.com?
It seems that BA flies to most of the destinations from LHR but that it doesn't connect one to the next w/o going back to LHR. So, for example, I could find LHR-CDG but nothing after that. No CDG-AMS CDG-BRU CDG-ZRH CDG-VCE.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Drago on February 06, 2014, 01:09:57 AM
It seems that BA flies to most of the destinations from LHR but that it doesn't connect one to the next w/o going back to LHR. So, for example, I could find LHR-CDG but nothing after that. No CDG-AMS CDG-BRU CDG-ZRH CDG-VCE.
Correct. That's why I wrote earlier that if you want to fly using the Explorer award, you have to do hub based flying.
Ie, TLV - hub - other city - hub - other city - etc
You have 5 OW airlines to play with when doing this.
Otherwise, you can take trains to cover the legs which aren't direct, meaning if you decide to do a non-hub to a non-hub.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 06, 2014, 08:11:33 AM
Well ya so you definitely said it before, hehe:
Typically, you'd have to do hub - x - hub flying when building your itin.
So the hubs of OW in Europe include VIE, various cities in Germany w/ AB, MAD and BCN w/ IB, and LHR w/ BA.
FinnAir is also in OW.
Guess I just didn't understand it back then. Will try to look into more options today
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: flyingace on February 06, 2014, 12:53:52 PM
Or you can use cheap European airlines instead of trains. Ryannair, Easy jet, etc.  Book your TLV-Europe-USA leg based on availability and then use alternate ways to get around. You may be able to build in one or two connections onto your main flights as well.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 06, 2014, 01:41:03 PM
Or you can use cheap European airlines instead of trains. Ryannair, Easy jet, etc.  Book your TLV-Europe-USA leg based on availability and then use alternate ways to get around. You may be able to build in one or two connections onto your main flights as well.

Thanks, I'll look into those as alternatives to trains.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 06, 2014, 01:44:23 PM
New issue: Just told AA to stop and look simply for any flights EUROPE-NYC for end of July and there's no availability...
So, looks like I'm going to have to use other miles. I have LH, but from what I've seen EUROPE-NYC is going to have ~$300 fees per person.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Drago on February 06, 2014, 02:01:43 PM
New issue: Just told AA to stop and look simply for any flights EUROPE-NYC for end of July and there's no availability...
So, looks like I'm going to have to use other miles. I have LH, but from what I've seen EUROPE-NYC is going to have ~$300 fees per person.
Stop asking them to find stuff, and check yourself.
A quick check on AA.com found availability almost every day from MAD to JFK, w/ various routings. And that was only one route I checked.

Never rely on them to do the searching for you. You need to speak to them equipped w/ the knowledge of the exact flights you need.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 06, 2014, 02:10:11 PM
Stop asking them to find stuff, and check yourself.
A quick check on AA.com found availability almost every day from MAD to JFK, w/ various routings. And that was only one route I checked.

Never rely on them to do the searching for you. You need to speak to them equipped w/ the knowledge of the exact flights you need.

I've been checking AA.com for the past 2 days while on the phone with them. They are MUCH better at finding flights. AA.com doesn't show IB flights for example.

Not sure what you're seeing. For the week of July 20, example, there are only economy saaver (which is not ideal for the long leg back to NY) and they stop off in TXL so you're flying all day basically.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Drago on February 06, 2014, 02:19:02 PM
I've been checking AA.com for the past 2 days while on the phone with them. They are MUCH better at finding flights. AA.com doesn't show IB flights for example.

Not sure what you're seeing. For the week of July 20, example, there are only economy saaver (which is not ideal for the long leg back to NY) and they stop off in TXL so you're flying all day basically.
Check IB on their website, or better, on BA.com
I saw routings through LHR.a
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: flyingace on February 06, 2014, 02:19:46 PM
New issue: Just told AA to stop and look simply for any flights EUROPE-NYC for end of July and there's no availability...
So, looks like I'm going to have to use other miles. I have LH, but from what I've seen EUROPE-NYC is going to have ~$300 fees per person.
Exactly. First find availability for the flights to and from Europe, then work out everything else around that. Europe in high season is very booked. You may end up with availability via a different alliance or destination...
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 06, 2014, 02:22:38 PM
Check IB on their website, or better, on BA.com
I saw routings through LHR.a

AA rep told me that avail via IB or BA does not mean avail that she can book through AA miles.

Exactly. First find availability for the flights to and from Europe, then work out everything else around that. Europe in high season is very booked.

Right. That's the problem right now, hehe.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Drago on February 06, 2014, 02:34:29 PM
AA rep told me that avail via IB or BA does not mean avail that she can book through AA miles.

Doesn't sound correct to me if it shows on BA.
Can any experts chime in?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 06, 2014, 02:44:33 PM
Doesn't sound correct to me if it shows on BA.
Can any experts chime in?
The reason it seems to me like it won't work is bc even AA has different award levels and OWE can only be booked with SAAver avail. So BA.com or IB.com might not be considered SAAver in AA terms.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: flyingace on February 06, 2014, 02:54:40 PM
I think he means that if it's showing up as an available award on BA it should mean Saver level, unless it's on BA itself who might show only their own, but I am  not sure they do that.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Drago on February 06, 2014, 03:03:06 PM
The reason it seems to me like it won't work is bc even AA has different award levels and OWE can only be booked with SAAver avail. So BA.com or IB.com might not be considered SAAver in AA terms.
-1

IB shows diff availability on their website for their own metal.
But my understanding is that whatever BA shows is available to AA.
Only AA metal has differences btw Saver and AnyTime (which is really double the miles for any open seat on the flight.)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 06, 2014, 03:05:23 PM
-1

IB shows diff availability on their website for their own metal.
But my understanding is that whatever BA shows is available to AA.
Only AA metal has differences btw Saver and AnyTime (which is really double the miles for any open seat on the flight.)

Okay so then IB.com won't work, but then under this assumption, BA should work. I'll look.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 06, 2014, 03:08:45 PM
Ok, there's a flight LHR-JFK BA0179 2 tickets in business class on 7/29. I'll call AA to see if it can be booked.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on February 06, 2014, 03:23:14 PM
Ok, there's a flight LHR-JFK BA0179 2 tickets in business class on 7/29. I'll call AA to see if it can be booked.
Be prepared for major YQ
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 06, 2014, 03:25:11 PM
Be prepared for major YQ

Even if booked through AA? If so, then it really means to avoid flying BA on any leg of the trip...
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Drago on February 06, 2014, 03:26:31 PM
Even if booked through AA? If so, then it really means to avoid flying BA on any leg of the trip...
Inner-European flights shouldn't have high YQ.

Also, if you do book that biz class ticket, start it somewhere else or else you'll be hit with the high UK passenger surcharge.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 06, 2014, 03:33:32 PM
Inner-European flights shouldn't have high YQ.

Also, if you do book that biz class ticket, start it somewhere else or else you'll be hit with the high UK passenger surcharge.

First of all just realized the 29th is too late, want to be home before 9 days. But either way, you're saying for ex. CDG-LHR-JFK would be cheaper than just LHR-JFK?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: flyingace on February 06, 2014, 03:40:13 PM
Inner-European flights shouldn't have high YQ.

Also, if you do book that biz class ticket, start it somewhere else or else you'll be hit with the high UK passenger surcharge.
But if he is flying TATL wouldn't there be very high YQ?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 06, 2014, 03:45:56 PM
Found CDG-LHR-EWR on BA.com and YQ is around $400 per person. LHR-JFK was around $500 pp.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Drago on February 06, 2014, 03:50:14 PM
Found CDG-LHR-EWR on BA.com and YQ is around $400 per person. LHR-JFK was around $500 pp.
Unsure about the YQ difference, but if you only have a layover in LHR, I don't think you have to pay the special ex-England tax.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 06, 2014, 04:00:34 PM
Unsure about the YQ difference, but if you only have a layover in LHR, I don't think you have to pay the special ex-England tax.

Well the flight shows up on AA.com too, as does the direct LHR-EWR flight. 590-450 YQ diff pp. That's interesting as the rep definitely checked LHR-NYC and said no availability....
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: MEIR613 on February 06, 2014, 04:07:13 PM
Unsure about the YQ difference, but if you only have a layover in LHR, I don't think you have to pay the special ex-England tax.
+1

Maybe try AB for the return.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 06, 2014, 04:13:03 PM
+1

Maybe try AB for the return.

Do you know I find something on AB.com can AA book it?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Drago on February 06, 2014, 04:23:32 PM
Do you know I find something on AB.com can AA book it?
AA.com searches AB availability, as does BA.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 06, 2014, 04:26:50 PM
AA.com searches AB availability, as does BA.
AA also shows BA and you still suggested searching BA.com
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Drago on February 06, 2014, 04:34:47 PM
AA also shows BA and you still suggested searching BA.com
You can search both.
BA will tell you the total cash cost from YQ and other fees before you get towards the final screen. AA won't.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 06, 2014, 04:45:52 PM
You can search both.
BA will tell you the total cash cost from YQ and other fees before you get towards the final screen. AA won't.
Gotcha
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: flyingace on February 06, 2014, 05:30:34 PM
It will be helpful for you to figure out what is more important- class of service or destination or length of stay, etc.

For example there are 2 business class seats out of Helsinki, but you would have to leave on Wed. July 23; the Thurs flight doesn't land until 3:50 Friday aft.  Also do you even want to go to Helsinki!!

As mentioned before there are coach seats for the days you want out of Madrid. So you are going to have to figure out how important the different issues are and make decisions based on that.

If this trip is very important you might not want to take the risk of waiting for better availability. Otoh - if Business class is a key part of the trip for you, you would not book coach at all. 

So it will probably come down to figuring out an itinerary that works as opposed to one that is perfect.
 
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 07, 2014, 10:05:52 AM
It will be helpful for you to figure out what is more important- class of service or destination or length of stay, etc.

For example there are 2 business class seats out of Helsinki, but you would have to leave on Wed. July 23; the Thurs flight doesn't land until 3:50 Friday aft.  Also do you even want to go to Helsinki!!

As mentioned before there are coach seats for the days you want out of Madrid. So you are going to have to figure out how important the different issues are and make decisions based on that.

If this trip is very important you might not want to take the risk of waiting for better availability. Otoh - if Business class is a key part of the trip for you, you would not book coach at all. 

So it will probably come down to figuring out an itinerary that works as opposed to one that is perfect.

True. I may just go for the flight out of LHR b/c this could be what I use "Zaidy's money" on :)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Drago on February 08, 2014, 01:56:18 PM
True. I may just go for the flight out of LHR b/c this could be what I use "Zaidy's money" on :)
Or you can give 90% of Zaidy's money to me, and I'll find you a better routing back to the US.
;)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 08, 2014, 06:42:53 PM
Or you can give 90% of Zaidy's money to me, and I'll find you a better routing back to the US.
;)

Haha! Back to planning!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 09, 2014, 05:33:51 PM
Anyone know how to combine the miles in mine and my wife's AA accounts with paying fees?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: sky121 on February 09, 2014, 06:02:40 PM
Anyone know how to combine the miles in mine and my wife's AA accounts with paying fees?

No way.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 09, 2014, 06:08:56 PM
No way.

Darn. Well, add it to all the YQ's.

1.25 hours on phone with AA, we're getting closer although there's no real reservation yet b/c IB flights can only be reserved for 24 hours and we know this won't be finished in 24 hours :)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Drago on February 10, 2014, 12:30:46 AM
Anyone know how to combine the miles in mine and my wife's AA accounts with paying fees?
Not enough miles in each account in order to book sep?
Can you transfer in SPG into your account, and save her's for a different time?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 10, 2014, 09:43:24 AM
Not enough miles in each account in order to book sep?
Can you transfer in SPG into your account, and save her's for a different time?

Nope :(
I have 113K, she has 53K. If we keep it under 10K miles and go biz, it'll be 90K pp. Didn't know SPG transfers (actually haven't looked into where it transfers to at all). Is it 1:1? Only 60K is under my name, 30K is under hers. Can I send her points to my AA acct? Or maybe send her SPG to my SPG w/o fees?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Drago on February 10, 2014, 10:09:09 AM
Nope :(
I have 113K, she has 53K. If we keep it under 10K miles and go biz, it'll be 90K pp. Didn't know SPG transfers (actually haven't looked into where it transfers to at all). Is it 1:1? Only 60K is under my name, 30K is under hers. Can I send her points to my AA acct? Or maybe send her SPG to my SPG w/o fees?
You get 25k when you transfer 20k. It then takes a few days on average till it'll post to your AA account.
If your address is the same, you can transfer for free btw SPG account, although it takes a few days to process.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 10, 2014, 10:27:00 AM
You get 25k when you transfer 20k. It then takes a few days on average till it'll post to your AA account.
If your address is the same, you can transfer for free btw SPG account, although it takes a few days to process.
Ooo that could work. If I transfer 60K. I'll have 113+75=188 and then I can buy 2K for $40. Only thing then is that I'm using up my SPG which would have been nice to use for hotel stays.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: flyingace on February 10, 2014, 11:38:35 AM
Why not just put in enough to get your wife's account to 90k?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 10, 2014, 11:43:55 AM
Why not just put in enough to get your wife's account to 90k?
Wow, that's smart. lol Ooo except that the SPG are under my name. Can I transfer them to her AA account?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: flyingace on February 10, 2014, 11:45:12 AM
Yes, if you are at the same address.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 10, 2014, 11:47:08 AM
Yes, if you are at the same address.
Great. So she would need 37K. Transfer 32K and get 37K? Or am I wasting 12K and I should just transfer 40K for 50K?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: flyingace on February 10, 2014, 11:48:41 AM
Your  call. If you want to save a little spg for hotels...
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 10, 2014, 11:49:41 AM
Your  call. If you want to save a little spg for hotels...

Right. Okay, back to planning. Thanks for ur help
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: flyingace on February 10, 2014, 11:51:29 AM
A pleasure. Did one for my son last summer, its really nice when it all comes together...
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 10, 2014, 12:00:30 PM
A pleasure. Did one for my son last summer, its really nice when it all comes together...
Yeah, but until then it's really hard lol
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 10, 2014, 03:06:49 PM
OK! So... we have a route reserved!

KEY: *connection
TLV-MAD-BCN-LHR-DUB-*LHR-BRU-(train to AMS and back)-*LHR-CDG-(open jaw for 11 days to take trains/cheap airlines to see some or all of: Paris, Marseilles, Nice, Zurich, Venice, Florence, Pisa and Rome)-FCO-*MAD-JFK-BOS
(BOS leg is only in there b/c you need an AA metal flight, but I won't actually take that leg unless we decide a visit to BOS would be nice :))

Woo hoo!! It finally works! All on business class for 90K pp but haven't got the YQ yet (although I'm sure it'll be cheaper than passing through LHR on the way to NYC), rep said the system needs to process it ???

2 things:
1) SPG need to transfer to AA so this route may not be available by the time that happens.
2) It was only at the end of our hour-long call that we realized MAD-JFK was available. Now, I'm thinking of changing the whole itinerary around to move East-West through Europe (which logically makes sense coming from Israel and heading to NY). I can start TLV-BRU or TLV-FCO via JetAirFly or EasyJet and piece together the non-hub cities until I'm ready for the OWE to knock out the hubs and end in Spain for the MAD-JFK...

I am probably most definitely overthinking this.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Marco Polo on February 10, 2014, 03:13:38 PM
OK! So... we have a route reserved!

KEY: *connection
TLV-MAD-BCN-LHR-DUB-*LHR-BRU-(train to AMS and back)-*LHR-CDG-(open jaw for 11 days to take trains/cheap airlines to see some or all of: Paris, Marseilles, Nice, Zurich, Venice, Florence, Pisa and Rome)-FCO-*MAD-JFK-BOS
(BOS leg is only in there b/c you need an AA metal flight, but I won't actually take that leg unless we decide a visit to BOS would be nice :))

Woo hoo!! It finally works! All on business class for 90K pp but haven't got the YQ yet (although I'm sure it'll be cheaper than passing through LHR on the way to NYC), rep said the system needs to process it ???

2 things:
1) SPG need to transfer to AA so this route may not be available by the time that happens.
2) It was only at the end of our hour-long call that we realized MAD-JFK was available. Now, I'm thinking of changing the whole itinerary around to move East-West through Europe (which logically makes sense coming from Israel and heading to NY). I can start TLV-BRU or TLV-FCO via JetAirFly or EasyJet and piece together the non-hub cities until I'm ready for the OWE to knock out the hubs and end in Spain for the MAD-JFK...

I am probably most definitely overthinking this.
I think AA holds reservations for 5 days.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 10, 2014, 03:16:09 PM
I think AA holds reservations for 5 days.
Yes, but they can only hold IB flights for 24 hours.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 10, 2014, 03:55:20 PM
YQ just came through. $644 pp. Hmm that's more than when I was taking BA across the ocean (but didn't have the LHR-DUB-LHR leg in there). I guess each BA leg adds a lot of YQ.
Total cost so far:
To Israel $150
OWE $1288
Still want to buy a few ~$100-150 short hauls during that open jaw but we're still within Zaidy's money.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Drago on February 10, 2014, 04:00:27 PM
You're definitly starting to overthink it.
You've got a good looking itin, and if you've got the $$ to pay the YQ, then jump on it.
At some point, the hours you spend planning this also have a high value.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 10, 2014, 04:14:06 PM
You're definitly starting to overthink it.
You've got a good looking itin, and if you've got the $$ to pay the YQ, then jump on it.
At some point, the hours you spend planning this also have a high value.
Not if you're having fun doing it :)
Thanks
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: flyingace on February 10, 2014, 05:02:06 PM
Why not avoid flying in and out of LHR? You can get in and out of Europe avoiding it?
I think your point 2 will be much smoother- you don't need so much hub flying around to see what you really want to, and easy jet and ryannair do a lot of those places.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 10, 2014, 05:16:30 PM
Why not avoid flying in and out of LHR? You can get in and out of Europe avoiding it?
I think your point 2 will be much smoother- you don't need so much hub flying around to see what you really want to, and easy jet and ryannair do a lot of those places.

So I can start looking into those airlines and I guess it makes sense if I keep that cost below the YQ of flying via LHR.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: flyingace on February 10, 2014, 05:21:08 PM
Trains in Europe are great as well. Or just do one or two hubs and spread out from there.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 10, 2014, 05:22:20 PM
Trains in Europe are great as well.

True but not necessarily so much cheaper.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: flyingace on February 10, 2014, 06:37:21 PM
Have you plotted this itinerary on the Great Circle Mapper? You will see clearly if the route makes sense. Quick glance shows that from BRU it makes no sense to go back to LHR. Just make your own way to Paris. And do your own thing  from there.  CDG-FCO does makes sense distance wise. But you still will be traveling in a circle, landing and departing from Madrid.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on February 10, 2014, 06:51:05 PM
Have you plotted this itinerary on the Great Circle Mapper? You will see clearly if the route makes sense. Quick glance shows that from BRU it makes no sense to go back to LHR. Just make your own way to Paris. And do your own thing  from there.  CDG-FCO does makes sense distance wise. But you still will be traveling in a circle, landing and departing from Madrid.
who cares. He's got plenty of time. If there were something else available then great. But no OW carrier flies bru-cdg
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 10, 2014, 08:30:16 PM
who cares. He's got plenty of time. If there were something else available then great. But no OW carrier flies bru-cdg
+1

I could look for some random carrier for BRU-CDG, maybe even DUB-BRU and skip LHR both times, but I was trying to get as many flights on OW as possible that made some sense - i.e. DUB and BRU to LHR are like 1 hour flights, so having to stop back there isn't so crazy. Once I'm in CDG, I no longer want to go back to LHR before ZRH or anywhere in Italy, so at that point I think I would take the random carriers. Also, I'm not sure 100% on the math, but paying ~$100 for a random carrier BRU-CDG may be just as expensive as the YQ for BRU-LHR-CDG.

(And yes, I have been using gcmaps. Interestingly, gcmaps has my trip at around 9100 miles and AA said it's 9700. Couldn't figure out where the discrepancy was although as long as I'm under 10K that's fine.)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: flyingace on February 10, 2014, 09:40:25 PM
I understand you are trying to maximize OW flights, but why pay YQ to fly back to a city you've been to  when that same flight can move you to a new destination? Easy jet flies to Nice or Milan or Geneva for 60-70 dollars in July....from Brussels.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on February 10, 2014, 10:38:46 PM
I understand you are trying to maximize OW flights, but why pay YQ to fly back to a city you've been to  when that same flight can move you to a new destination? Easy jet flies to Nice or Milan or Geneva for 60-70 dollars in July....from Brussels.

That's a valid point. In fact, just a quick look and I found Ryanair goes DUB-CRL (which is another airport in Brussels) for also $50-60. Will look into some more of these routes tomorrow.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on March 26, 2014, 07:41:52 PM
Well, hello again! Been about 6 weeks since I posted here and about 6 weeks since I got sick of looking at different OWE options. Just got into it again yesterday when magically, I was browsing aa.com and found ORY-JFK on the date I wanted to depart Europe! After scouring most of February for Europe-NY (and only coming up with LHR-JFK and those crazy YQs or HEL-JFK and travelling out of the way to HEL, raising my distance travelled by way too much), this Paris flight looks perfect!
Spent 2 days trying to piece everything together (you may have seen me in the Spain/Gibraltar Master Thread trying to fit Spain in) and now it all looks good. Pretty crazy. I mean, we dropped certain places, like Zurich and Athens, but I realized you just have to be realistic and happy with what locations you can fit in.

Anyway, I've been waiting a few hours for it to price out, and I just called AA to find out 2 startling things:
1) The trip is over 9000 miles, which means it requires 90K pp (business)
2) Total YQ is >$1100 pp!!

What??
1) Even when I had HEL as my final route to NY, it was under 9K travelled, which meant it fell under the 80K tier.
2) When I had LHR-JFK in there - supposedly the high YQ flight - it was around $700 pp.

Oy. :'(

Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on March 27, 2014, 12:40:02 AM
What's your routing?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on March 27, 2014, 08:22:12 AM
What's your routing?

Whoops, should have posted that. I know it passes through LHR a lot, but every routing we tried in Feb also did.

TLV-MAD-BCN-MAD-SVQ-MAD-FCO-LHR-AMS-LHR-DUB-LHR-CDG/ORY-JFK
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on March 27, 2014, 09:49:43 AM
I actually got the individual YQs from them pp:

TLV-MAD $79.50 IB
MAD-BCN $39.20 IB
BCN-MAD-SVQ $70.80 IB
SVQ-MAD-FCO $60.80 IB (weird that leaving Spain is cheaper than the previous flight)
FCO-LHR-AMS $158.50 BA
AMS-LHR $81.80 BA
LHR-DUB $134.30 BA
DUB-LHR-CDG $140.40 BA
ORY-JFK $396.20 BA

Again, total is about $1160 and they want $25 pp phone booking fees (which I thought could be waived bc this trip can't be booked online, but first rep said nope. If I go through with it, obv I will HUCA the matter).
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on March 27, 2014, 09:58:58 AM
What airline are you flying ORY-JFK?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on March 27, 2014, 10:25:58 AM
What airline are you flying ORY-JFK?
BA, but I expect the Europe-NY flight to cost money. It's all these other ones that are 80-150 that are bothersome. Will update the previous post with the airlines for each leg.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on March 27, 2014, 11:17:16 PM
This is getting back to the frustrating stage where I left it in Feb.  :-\

I found Cbs's Euro TR in which he used Avios to book certain legs for cheaper than AA is coming up with, but doing something like that would kill my OWE. I learned yesterday that the OJ allowed on the OWE has to be used in NY - ending the trip there as opposed to requiring me to go back to TLV. I don't know why I didn't realize that before, but I thought you could book a one-way trip and have an OJ in there too. Basically, now I can't leave any OW city in Europe and travel to another via a different airline unless I return to the OW city I left off at. Since I can't really stray too far from my last OW city, using Avios to go around won't help.

I've skimmed through every other Eurotrip report in the Master List as well and haven't come up with any good ideas from them. I've looked at the cheap airlines like Ryanair, EasyJet, and JetAirFly and even though they connect many random cities, they still cost between $50-80 for most flights and they don't connect the cities I want with skipping LON (eg. they don't have AMS-DUB). And again, if I use them, I have to get back to my last OW city to continue my Explorer.

I also looked at LH as an option to go back to NY, but every flight they have from DUS, VIE, ZRH has about $400 YQ - no better than my current $400 ORY-JFK. There is 1 seat on biz DUS-JFK at the end of July, which only has $80 YQ and would totally change things (dropping my total by over $300pp), but it's only 1 seat. I keep checking to see if another opens, or if there's some way to view expanded award availability (like how United 1K can see expanded United availability), but no luck yet.

If anyone has any other ideas for how to travel within Europe on award flights with low YQ and ending back in NY, please pray tell.
Thanks
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: smart brit on March 28, 2014, 01:37:23 AM
Did you try aer lingus? Dub jfk 20k avios +90$?
Aer lingus from zrh-dub should be around 100$ pp.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on March 28, 2014, 07:39:54 AM
Did you try aer lingus? Dub jfk 20k avios +90$?
Aer lingus from zrh-dub should be around 100$ pp.
How do you suggest to search for avail? BA.com only shows with stopovers at LHR.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on March 28, 2014, 09:31:28 AM
Been trying to find it on Qantas as suggested by The Points Guy (http://thepointsguy.com/2012/04/using-british-airways-avios-on-aer-lingus-to-avoid-taxes-and-fuel-surcharges/) but can't find anything direct.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on March 28, 2014, 09:43:56 AM
Just called BA. Couldn't find any AerLingus avail for DUB-NYC or BOS even. Same thing for MAD/BCN-NYC. I guess I can try again once US officially becomes OW in April.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 01, 2014, 01:13:20 PM
FOUND IT!!! FOUND MY WAY ACROSS THE ATLANTIC!

DUB-CLT on US on the exact date I want to leave Europe for $45.60!

Wow, 2 months of waiting and there it is.

Now, 2 things to do:
1) I need to re-piece everything together (for the millionth time) from TLV and now ending in DUB.
2) I need to find CLT-NYC. Ideally, I would like EWR since my car will be my mother's house who lives near there. Either way, right now AA is not showing any availability departing after I arrive in CLT. Worst case, I spend the night there.

Woohoo! Onwards!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 03, 2014, 09:30:13 AM
Gentleman (ladies),
We have liftoff. AA is pricing out the itinerary now, and b"h it looks awesome, if I may say so myself. Will post more details once it's done.

Traveller's Insurance
I have scoured the forums for info on insurance - cancellation, delays, medical, etc. Seems like every time someone started a thread on the topic, there were no replies. Is anyone familiar with traveller's/trip insurance? Is it enough to just pay for everything with my SP and not get any additional insurance?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 03, 2014, 01:26:23 PM
Coincidentally, SP just promo emailed me about their Travel Benefits program. Called up to get more details:
Flights cancellation or interruption due to death in the family or illness/injury are covered up to $5000, but delayed or missed flights are not covered. Medical is also not covered. As is well known, intl rental car insurance is covered. Also just had them send me an EMV chip card, which I do not have yet, and put a notice on my account that I will be in Europe in the summer to avoid getting locked out for fraud.

Will now look into other travel insurances to cover delayed/missed flights as well as looking into my health insurance to see if I'm covered abroad.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 03, 2014, 01:40:56 PM
looking into my health insurance to see if I'm covered abroad.

Hopefully this shouldn't happen, but I'm covered for emergencies abroad. Explained as - having to go to the hospital. I pay everything upfront and get an itemized bill, file a claim when I get back and then my regular benefit rules apply - copay/deductible/etc.

Good to know. Think that will hopefully be enough coverage.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: YankyDoodle on April 03, 2014, 02:40:09 PM
Hopefully this shouldn't happen, but I'm covered for emergencies abroad. Explained as - having to go to the hospital. I pay everything upfront and get an itemized bill, file a claim when I get back and then my regular benefit rules apply - copay/deductible/etc.

Good to know. Think that will hopefully be enough coverage.
Assuming you have no preexisting conditions, travelers health insurance is pretty cheap anyway.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 03, 2014, 02:44:08 PM
Assuming you have no preexisting conditions, travelers health insurance is pretty cheap anyway.
Aha, but if I have this, don't see why I would need more, no?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: YankyDoodle on April 03, 2014, 03:33:01 PM
Aha, but if I have this, don't see why I would need more, no?
Ya absolutely, you just want to make sure that there's no fine print you're missing (i.e. does it cover ambulance etc). In the event that you are not 100% comfortable with it, you can get health insurance cheap.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 03, 2014, 04:13:17 PM
Ya absolutely, you just want to make sure that there's no fine print you're missing (i.e. does it cover ambulance etc). In the event that you are not 100% comfortable with it, you can get health insurance cheap.
Thanks. Just called again to confirm and yes ambulance is covered. After this call, I'm very comfortable, so I'll stick with just this.

On to trip insurance - are all these insurance programs going to be the same - a few different tiers of coverage for all about $100-$300? Anyone have a specific positive experience with any company? Someone suggested Travel Guard. Site looks good, seems like the coverage will cover everything, and their highest tier is $180.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: bhphotoman on April 03, 2014, 06:09:57 PM
Look in to travelex insurance we used them and had to make use of them and they were excellent
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 03, 2014, 09:30:12 PM
Look in to travelex insurance we used them and had to make use of them and they were excellent
Thanks for sharing your experience. Will do.
Title: Re: Stage 1: 90% COMPLETE == @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 03, 2014, 09:43:37 PM
And the OWE just got priced out! (This is not the entire trip; additional stops via train, Ryanair, EasyJet, and car rentals are planned.)
Here it is:       *indicates connection only

TLV-MAD-BCN-*MAD-SVQ-*MAD-FCO-LHR-BRU-*LHR-CDG-*LHR-DUB-CLT

Total cost for 90K miles and $848.20 pax   (+$25 booking fee, still want to fight that)

I am SO freaking excited!

Now, I just need that SPG-AA transfer to move a little faster before the reservation hold ends...
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 04, 2014, 01:17:12 PM
Might go crazy here waiting for the miles to post... Hold expires on Sunday. Read through FT and a few blogs and found 1 report of SPG-AA posting on a Sunday and not on Wednesday (as is normally the case). Crossing my fingers here or else I'll have to get them to unleash the whole ticket and rebook it, wait for the rate dept again to price it, etc...
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 05, 2014, 11:18:06 PM
Just to make sure.... Did you transfer from YOUR SPG account?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 05, 2014, 11:46:30 PM
Just to make sure.... Did you transfer from YOUR SPG account?
Wife's SPG to wife's AA and just checked after Shabbos and the points were there! Never used FT but I should add my data point to their SPG transfers thread as no one there reported incoming SPG-AA miles during the 25 hours of Shabbos.

Ready to book! Any ideas for avoiding the $25 booking fee? Every rep so far said it's not a convenience fee like I thought (and therefore should be waived when it's impossible to book on the phone), but it's just simply a phone booking fee without anyway to go around it. Tried in Aadvantage reservations and tried Aadvantaqe Customer Service depts.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 06, 2014, 01:38:35 AM
BOOOOOOKED!

Yeah, got excited when the points posted after Shabbos and wasn't tired till now, so I just called and booked!
Tried to get the $25 fee waived, but they were not budging once again. But interestingly... it was $848.20 pax when I called on Thursday, but tonight it was only $751.70!! What?? AWESOME.

Good night.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 06, 2014, 01:47:26 AM
BOOOOOOKED!

Yeah, got excited when the points posted after Shabbos and wasn't tired till now, so I just called and booked!
Tried to get the $25 fee waived, but they were not budging once again. But interestingly... it was $848.20 pax when I called on Thursday, but tonight it was only $751.70!! What?? AWESOME.

Good night.
Happy for you! Now we're waiting for the TR!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 06, 2014, 10:19:41 AM
Happy for you! Now we're waiting for the TR!
Thanks :)

Just picked up the last 2 seats on the flight I wanted from CLT-EWR to end the trip on US booked with 4500 Avios + $2.50 pax :)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Marco Polo on April 08, 2014, 10:19:34 AM
Did you ever finis booking the RTW ticket? Seems like it is not an option anymore.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 08, 2014, 10:21:09 AM
Did you ever finis booking the RTW ticket? Seems like it is not an option anymore.
Yes! Posted in the AA thread that I thank G-d ticketed on SUNDAY!!! Crazy.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Marco Polo on April 08, 2014, 10:22:37 AM
Yes! Posted in the AA thread that I thank G-d ticketed on SUNDAY!!! Crazy.
Happy for you. Would have been a shame after all the effort put in for this trip.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: efflpetzel on April 08, 2014, 10:25:08 AM
Yup, your a very lucky boy
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 08, 2014, 10:33:17 AM
Yup, your a very lucky boy
Happy for you. Would have been a shame after all the effort put in for this trip.
Thanks guys :) Phew!
Yeah here's the lineup from a few posts upthread:
 *indicates connection only

TLV-MAD-BCN-*MAD-SVQ-*MAD-FCO-LHR-BRU-*LHR-CDG-*LHR-DUB-CLT

$776.70 pax
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Marco Polo on April 08, 2014, 10:34:33 AM
Thanks guys :) Phew!
Yeah here's the lineup from a few posts upthread:
 *indicates connection only

TLV-MAD-BCN-*MAD-SVQ-*MAD-FCO-LHR-BRU-*LHR-CDG-*LHR-DUB-CLT

$776.70 pax
What class and airlines are you flying in/on?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 08, 2014, 10:37:00 AM
What class and airlines are you flying in/on?

J (got lucky they had avail on every leg)
TLV through FCO is IB
FCO through DUB is BA
DUB-CLT is US

Had been waiting forever to find a way to cross the ocean w/o having to take BA and their YQ.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 08, 2014, 11:30:19 AM
Any ideas here guys?

Trying to go VCE-NCE/MRS on 7/7 and then NCE/MRS-FCO either on 7/9 at night or on 7/10.

Tried EasyJet (only one of the cheap European airlines that flies these routes with availability) but it'll come out to $100/leg/pax.

AF has availability, although the dates/times aren't perfect, for 15K and about $30-40 per leg. I saw that these flights can be booked via AS for the same miles/YQ, but I'm not sure it's worth transferring 50-60K of MR or SPG over there.

AZ might have something, but their system just went down and CSR said to call back later.

Any other ideas?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 08, 2014, 11:59:00 AM
Any ideas here guys?

Trying to go VCE-NCE/MRS on 7/7 and then NCE/MRS-FCO either on 7/9 at night or on 7/10.

Tried EasyJet (only one of the cheap European airlines that flies these routes with availability) but it'll come out to $100/leg/pax.

AF has availability, although the dates/times aren't perfect, for 15K and about $30-40 per leg. I saw that these flights can be booked via AS for the same miles/YQ, but I'm not sure it's worth transferring 50-60K of MR or SPG over there.

AZ might have something, but their system just went down and CSR said to call back later.

Any other ideas?
$100 would be your best option. 10,000 MR points is worth about $150....
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 08, 2014, 12:20:41 PM
I hope you know, most of your flights don't even have real business class seats.... Hope I didn't make you in a bad mood now.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 08, 2014, 12:26:54 PM
I hope you know, most of your flights don't even have real business class seats.... Hope I didn't make you in a bad mood now.
Yeah, I realized that a while ago. The goal was to cross the ocean in business, and from what I understand, the rest will be 2 roomier seats in a row instead of 3. For the extra 20K pax for the trip, I'll take it.

ETA: I also realize US DUB-CLT might not be the fanciest J either.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 08, 2014, 12:38:06 PM
Yeah, I realized that a while ago. The goal was to cross the ocean in business, and from what I understand, the rest will be 2 roomier seats in a row instead of 3. For the extra 20K pax for the trip, I'll take it.

ETA: I also realize US DUB-CLT might not be the fanciest J either.
Yup..
 
Not sure what you mean roomier seats usually they are regular economy seats not even economy plus, with the middle seat left empty.

Though the service might be business class service.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 08, 2014, 12:39:35 PM
Yup..
 
Not sure what you mean roomier seats usually they are regular economy seats not even economy plus, with the middle seat left empty.

Though the service might be business class service.
Really? I thought it's 2 larger seats in place of 3 regular ones.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 08, 2014, 12:41:38 PM
Really? I thought it's 2 larger seats in place of 3 regular ones.
So now you know... Sorry... Again for just 20k more it's not really a big deal.

Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 08, 2014, 12:53:38 PM
Checking seatguru now (LOL). You're right. But yeah, it'll be nice not having anyone sit with us. + First on/off privileges.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 08, 2014, 12:57:05 PM
LY is more less the only one offering nice J flying from TLV to Europe. (I think BA/AZ/LX have J as well)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 08, 2014, 02:55:13 PM
Just confirmed the layout of all my BA flights (can't reserve seats without paying a fee until check-in apparently) and every flight has larger seats in business class with either 2x2 or 2x3x2 layouts.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 08, 2014, 02:58:34 PM
Just confirmed the layout of all my BA flights (can't reserve seats without paying a fee until check-in apparently) and every flight has larger seats in business class with either 2x2 or 2x3x2 layouts.
Whom did you confirm it with?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 08, 2014, 02:59:11 PM
Whom did you confirm it with?
Called BA. He showed me how to pull up online the layout for each flight.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 08, 2014, 03:31:29 PM
how?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 08, 2014, 03:44:07 PM
how?
http://www.britishairways.com/en-us/information/about-ba/fleet-facts
On the left, pick the aircraft. Then scroll to the bottom to choose which version of the aircraft it will be. For the most part there's just 2 options, UK Domestic and European.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 08, 2014, 06:29:14 PM
Have an idea here: The OWE has me in FCO for 10 days. The original plan was to spend a 2-3 days in Rome, then train northward to Florence/Pisa for 2 days, and then up to Venice for 2-3 days, then do this EasyJet idea to Nice and Marseille for 2 days and EasyJet back to FCO to catch my flight to LHR.

I'm not in love with spending $400 on EJ (see upthread) to see Nice and Marseille, especially when the whole OWE is $750. I also read through the Nice thread, and although there isn't much content there, it doesn't seem to be as remarkable a place as I thought it was. Now I'm thinking of finishing the 10 day journey by going VCE-ZRH-FCO, which I can do for 60K UA/$140 or 60K LH/$375 (for both of us). Obviously, the LH route is almost as expensive as taking EJ to NCE/MRS so that doesn't make a lot of sense. But with the UA route, I'd have to transfer from UR/SPG - either half and half (I only have 30K UR) or 50K from SPG (almost all my SPG, leaving me with basically nothing for hotels)...

I'm not very good at the valuing miles ever. Is the math as simple as would the $260 I'm saving by going UA instead of EJ be worth the hotels I could have gotten for 50K SPG?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 08, 2014, 07:43:47 PM
Have an idea here: The OWE has me in FCO for 10 days. The original plan was to spend a 2-3 days in Rome, then train northward to Florence/Pisa for 2 days, and then up to Venice for 2-3 days, then do this EasyJet idea to Nice and Marseille for 2 days and EasyJet back to FCO to catch my flight to LHR.

I'm not in love with spending $400 on EJ (see upthread) to see Nice and Marseille, especially when the whole OWE is $750. I also read through the Nice thread, and although there isn't much content there, it doesn't seem to be as remarkable a place as I thought it was. Now I'm thinking of finishing the 10 day journey by going VCE-ZRH-FCO, which I can do for 60K UA/$140 or 60K LH/$375 (for both of us). Obviously, the LH route is almost as expensive as taking EJ to NCE/MRS so that doesn't make a lot of sense. But with the UA route, I'd have to transfer from UR/SPG - either half and half (I only have 30K UR) or 50K from SPG (almost all my SPG, leaving me with basically nothing for hotels)...

I'm not very good at the valuing miles ever. Is the math as simple as would the $260 I'm saving by going UA instead of EJ be worth the hotels I could have gotten for 50K SPG?
60k UA + 140 = at least $850 and if you wanna burn SPG you really get a bad value. I would just stick to EJ.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on April 08, 2014, 07:53:13 PM
Why not rent a car and do fco-Florence-vce-lake Como-Italian alps-Milan-fly back to fco
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 08, 2014, 08:24:49 PM
60k UA + 140 = at least $850 and if you wanna burn SPG you really get a bad value. I would just stick to EJ.

Honestly curious - how do you calculate the $850?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 08, 2014, 08:43:25 PM
Honestly curious - how do you calculate the $850?
First of all I have news for you, SPG transfers to UA 2:1 so you'll have to transfer 60,000 SPG to get 30,000 UA, if you do so it will effectively cost you $1670!!!! UA points are worth at least 1.3 so 1.3 x 30,000 = $390, SPG is worth at least 1.9 so 1.9 x 60,000 = $1,140, plus $140 = $1670!!!!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 08, 2014, 08:47:18 PM
Now EVEN if you transfer 60,000 UR, UR values at least at 1.4 so 60,000 x 1.4 = $840 + $140 = $980!!!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 08, 2014, 08:58:07 PM
Where do those values of 1.3 1.4 and 1.9 come from? Is that the avg rate miles-buyers pay?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 08, 2014, 09:01:06 PM
Where do those values of 1.3 1.4 and 1.9 come from? Is that the avg rate miles-buyers pay?
About. Either way, you save about $300 by just buying the EJ tickets.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ckmk47 on April 08, 2014, 09:20:40 PM
Where do those values of 1.3 1.4 and 1.9 come from? Is that the avg rate miles-buyers pay?
buyers pay
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 08, 2014, 10:11:57 PM
Why not rent a car and do fco-Florence-vce-lake Como-Italian alps-Milan-fly back to fco

Car as opposed to train?
Have you been to Lake Como or the Italian Alps?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on April 08, 2014, 10:14:32 PM
I like to be on my own schedule (make my own detours and stops and not worry about getting to and from the train station. I also like to drive.
Yes. Also, Neither are really accessible via public transport
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 08, 2014, 10:36:38 PM
I like to be on my own schedule (make my own detours and stops and not worry about getting to and from the train station. I also like to drive.
Yes. Also, Neither are really accessible via public transport
Aha, interesting. Just did some Google Mapping...

Driving FCO-FLR is 3 hours. Training is also 3 hours.
Driving FLR-PSA is 1 hour. Training is 1.75 hours. (I want to stop by Pisa)
Driving PSA-VCE is 3.25 hours. Training is 5 hours.
And then could technically go on to LC/Alps.

Don't know why I didn't consider driving before, unless it's really expensive, it makes more sense than trains. Thanks for the suggestion.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 08, 2014, 10:41:27 PM
buyers pay
Thanks.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 08, 2014, 11:19:59 PM
Check this out!

ZRH as a stopover from VCE-FCO. Under 24 hours and it's free, right? Just got it on hold with United, the best possible under-24 hours stopover - the 23H 55M stopover.
Land in ZRH at 9:10PM leave the next day at 9:05PM.

Now it's 15K pax and $50 YQ for a total of 30K (gna have to be my UR points) and $100. Thoughts on that value, ilherman?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 08, 2014, 11:31:38 PM
What's ganna be with NSE/MRS?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 08, 2014, 11:33:11 PM
What's ganna be with NSE/MRS?

1 day in ZRH for $100 to see the Alps might just be better than 2 days in NCE/MRS for $400 to see nice beaches. Have you done either/both?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 08, 2014, 11:33:18 PM
btw the $50 is not YQ, it's tax.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 08, 2014, 11:35:16 PM
1 day in ZRH for $100 to see the Alps might just be better than 2 days in NCE/MRS for $400 to see nice beaches. Have you done either/both?
I have done ZRH, it's indeed beautiful. Thought you Davke wanna do NCE.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 08, 2014, 11:43:41 PM
btw the $50 is not YQ, it's tax.
Honestly, I don't know the difference. Obviously, one is fuel surcharges, but to me it's all just cash.

I have done ZRH, it's indeed beautiful. Thought you Davke wanna do NCE.
Only thought I did because I wanted to get as much as possible out of my trip, and VCE is close to NCE. I just didn't think ZRH was an option once it didn't fit into my OWE and totally didn't think of it when looking for destinations close to VCE. In my original list of desired destinations, ZRH was definitely higher than NCE.

Do you think it's a good use of 30K UR?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 08, 2014, 11:49:52 PM
What's the $100?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 08, 2014, 11:51:01 PM
What's the $100?
$50 in taxes times 2.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 08, 2014, 11:54:41 PM
Gotcha, I am just not sure where you wanna push in these flights, aren't you doing SVQ-FCO?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on April 08, 2014, 11:59:54 PM
Go for it. Sounds like it fits perfectly.
I would still drive fco-Florence-Pisa-vce
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 09, 2014, 12:12:57 AM
Gotcha, I am just not sure where you wanna push in these flights, aren't you doing SVQ-FCO?

Yeah, but I need to leave from FCO when I'm done with Italy (and moving onto LHR) since I can't have an OJ besides for my final leg in CLT.
So, the idea is to spend time in FCO, travel up Italy and get back to FCO to catch my flight to LHR, which leaves 10 days after I first land in FCO.

Go for it. Sounds like it fits perfectly.
I would still drive fco-Florence-Pisa-vce
Thanks. Yeah that definitely makes more sense than training.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 09, 2014, 12:16:22 AM
But looking at the math now, if UR are valued at 1.4, then 1.4*30K=$420+$100taxes=$520. Is that really how the math works? That, once again, says it's cheaper to go to NCE/MRS.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 09, 2014, 12:18:24 AM
But looking at the math now, if UR are valued at 1.4, then 1.4*30K=$420+$100taxes=$520. Is that really how the math works? That, once again, says it's cheaper to go to NCE/MRS.
$120 cheaper?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 09, 2014, 12:22:01 AM
$120 cheaper?
Yeah. Still would rather visit ZRH, but just pointing out that it's still more expensive than NCE/MRS, albeit less expensive than it was when we looked at it a few hours ago.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 09, 2014, 12:25:31 AM
Sounds good to me.

It's with LX, right?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 09, 2014, 12:26:39 AM
Sounds good to me.

It's with LX, right?
Yep.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 09, 2014, 12:26:59 AM
But looking at the math now, if UR are valued at 1.4, then 1.4*30K=$420+$100taxes=$520. Is that really how the math works? That, once again, says it's cheaper to go to NCE/MRS.
Do you have a other way to do the math?  ;)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 09, 2014, 12:30:19 AM
UA let you put the reservation on hold?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 09, 2014, 12:31:57 AM
Do you have a other way to do the math?  ;)
I'm studying to be a CPA, okay cut me some slack with the math. Wait. What?

Yeah only 24 hours bc it's LX.

K I'm out for the night. Gnight.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 09, 2014, 10:28:31 AM
Got another idea here. If I do VCE-ZRH-FCO, I will end up being in Venice for 4-5 days (incl. Shabbos). Now we know Ergel would suggest against that many days in VCE. But, a very similar flight goes from MXP-ZRH-FCO. Meaning I could leave VCE after 2-3 days, drive to Lake Como and then catch the flight from MXP.

Ergel, how much time do I want in LC (especially with no points-hotels there)? Do you think the trip can be done in 1 day? Leave VCE in the morning, 3 hours drive to LC, spend ~5 hours there, and then drive the hour trip to MXP to catch an 8:30PM flight?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on April 09, 2014, 11:00:26 AM
Got another idea here. If I do VCE-ZRH-FCO, I will end up being in Venice for 4-5 days (incl. Shabbos). Now we know Ergel would suggest against that many days in VCE. But, a very similar flight goes from MXP-ZRH-FCO. Meaning I could leave VCE after 2-3 days, drive to Lake Como and then catch the flight from MXP.

Ergel, how much time do I want in LC (especially with no points-hotels there)? Do you think the trip can be done in 1 day? Leave VCE in the morning, 3 hours drive to LC, spend ~5 hours there, and then drive the hour trip to MXP to catch an 8:30PM flight?
Not much to do in lake Como. It's just gorgeous. Drive up to Bellagio. Find a private place to jump in the water. Walk around a little bit and be on your way.
Only issue with that is instead of ditching your car when you her to vce, you'd still need it after your time in Venice (and pay for parking) or do two rentals which may be even more expensive
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 09, 2014, 11:15:35 AM
Not much to do in lake Como. It's just gorgeous. Drive up to Bellagio. Find a private place to jump in the water. Walk around a little bit and be on your way.
Only issue with that is instead of ditching your car when you her to vce, you'd still need it after your time in Venice (and pay for parking) or do two rentals which may be even more expensive
So then I can definitely do LC in a day, maybe even see some of Milan. But maybe it's just worth it to stay in VCE and chill out for a day. Haven't planned any lazy days yet.

Sorry didn't follow the car issue. Isn't the only difference just whether I'm returning it in VCE or MXP?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 09, 2014, 12:04:24 PM
Only issue with that is instead of ditching your car when you her to vce, you'd still need it after your time in Venice (and pay for parking) or do two rentals which may be even more expensive

Just got it. Wasn't thinking that I would have to keep the car somewhere in VCE for 3 days. Okay, forget it. It makes more sense to just chill in VCE. In fact, I'm going to delay my trips to FLR and PSA a day so I'll have a full 3 days in FCO before moving north, and a full 3 days in VCE before going to ZRH. Great. Booking now.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 13, 2014, 11:00:04 PM
Got my first 3 hotel nights booked!

Choice BRG to stay in CLT on the last night of the trip before continuing up to New York in the morning.

Signed up for the Melia deal (http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=40517.0) and got 2 nights at different TRYPs in MAD for the 2 nights we'll be there.

:-D
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ad120 on April 14, 2014, 01:07:31 AM
May i suggest Lugano?
It is really gorgeous in the summer months.
I was just there in the winter and everything was shut down. But it seemed pretty popular for the summer months. We flew into MXP spent the day in Milan before taking 65 min train ride to Lugano. The places I'd go to in Milan are the Duomo, Castle, and the RESTAURANTS!! Carmel had the best Italian kosher pizza and Denzel was pretty good. 
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 14, 2014, 09:25:54 AM
May i suggest Lugano?
It is really gorgeous in the summer months.
I was just there in the winter and everything was shut down. But it seemed pretty popular for the summer months. We flew into MXP spent the day in Milan before taking 65 min train ride to Lugano. The places I'd go to in Milan are the Duomo, Castle, and the RESTAURANTS!! Carmel had the best Italian kosher pizza and Denzel was pretty good.
Thanks for the suggestions! Unfortunately, our stops are pretty much set at this point, and Milan is not on the itinerary. I might have considered it more if I had spoken with you earlier, but based on the TRs in the Italy master threads, it seemed like most people were not such big fans of Milan, so we left it out.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Emkay on April 14, 2014, 02:13:52 PM
May i suggest Lugano?
It is really gorgeous in the summer months.
I was just there in the winter and everything was shut down. But it seemed pretty popular for the summer months. We flew into MXP spent the day in Milan before taking 65 min train ride to Lugano. The places I'd go to in Milan are the Duomo, Castle, and the RESTAURANTS!! Carmel had the best Italian kosher pizza and Denzel was pretty good.
sorry for hijacking this thread but I felt an intervention was very neccesary.
I have been to Carmel numerous times and to prob every establishment in italy that sells pizza with a respectable hechser and IMHDSEO there is no worse excuse for pizza to be found!!

But they do have Awesome pasta :P
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 14, 2014, 04:42:30 PM
sorry for hijacking this thread but I felt an intervention was very neccesary.
I have been to Carmel numerous times and to prob every establishment in italy that sells pizza with a respectable hechser and IMHDSEO there is no worse excuse for pizza to be found!!

But they do have Awesome pasta :P
lol then I'll have to enjoy the pasta :)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: sky121 on April 14, 2014, 04:44:26 PM
Venice has some excellent pizza. One of the best I've ever had.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 14, 2014, 04:53:57 PM
Venice has some excellent pizza. One of the best I've ever had.
That's on the list. Will have to make sure to get some :)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Emkay on April 14, 2014, 05:01:14 PM
Venice has some excellent pizza. One of the best I've ever had.


That's on the list. Will have to make sure to get some :)
just make sure not to save it for friday afternoon as they run out of cheese almost every week and all you will be left with is a carrot slice
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 14, 2014, 05:02:11 PM
just make sure not to save it for friday afternoon as they run out of cheese almost every week and all you will be left with is a carrot slice
LOL we're arriving on Friday. Will just have to wait till Sunday.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 14, 2014, 05:36:18 PM
Okay. Still waiting to book VCE-ZRH-FCO bc I realized I once opened a UMPE for my mom to use for a trip but she ended up going on SWA, so I have 50K UA to use w/o having to burn my UR. :) Just waiting for her points to post and then I'll book it.

In the meanwhile, it's time to start looking into hotels. If you read a few posts upthread, I got 2 free nights at TRYPs in Madrid thanks to that deal posted by emak. Now, I want to plan the rest of it.

From the wiki, I have 4 free Hyatt nights, 34K UR, 70K Marriot and 80K IC. There should still be enough time for me to get another cc or 2 before the trip, but here's what we have for now.

I looked up all the Hyatts at the destinations on my trip and here they are with how many nights we'll be in each place. I imagine it's not fun to sleep in 2 hotels in the same city, so using 4 Hyatt nights in Paris when we're there for 5 nights might be annoying, or I could look to buy someone's free night.

I researched all the Hyatts that are in the countries on my itinerary. Would love opinions on where to stay with my 4 free nights. I know people here love the Park Hyatt Paris (and could be I will too) but a friend did stay there and said it was really small (I guess like all hotels in Paris). I listed how many nights I'll be in each city including whether I'll be there for Shabbos.

Park Hyatt
Paris (5 nights incl. Shabbos)
Zurich (1 night)

Andaz
London (4 nights incl. Shabbos)
Amsterdam (2 nights)

Hyatt
Paris x2 (5 nights incl. Shabbos)

Hyatt Regency
London (4 nights incl. Shabbos)
Paris x2 (5 nights incl. Shabbos)

Hyatt Place
Amsterdam (2 nights)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on April 14, 2014, 05:57:15 PM
30K UR will get you your fifth night at PH Paris
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 14, 2014, 06:07:48 PM
30K UR will get you your fifth night at PH Paris
Ooo good idea! Is it really that special? i.e. I want to use my nights there?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 14, 2014, 06:08:10 PM
And here are the Marriotts with how many nights we'll be there for and how many points are req/night:

Amsterdam (2 nights) 40K
Zurich (1 night) 40K
Paris x4 (5 nights)
~ Champs Elysees 45K
~ Opera Ambassador 40K
~ Rive Gauche 35K
~ CDG Airport 30K
Brussels (possibly 1 night) 35K
Ghent (possibly 1 night) 35K
Rome x2 (4 nights)
~ Grand Hotel Flora 40K
~ Park Hotel 25K
London x10 (4 nights)
~ Park Lane 45K
~ Grosvenor Square 45K
~ County Hall 40K
~ Maida Vale 35K
~ LHR Airport 35K
~ West India Quay 35K
~ Marble Arch 35K
~ Kensington 30K
~ Regents Park 30K
~ Twickenham 30K

Could be I missed some of the ones in the UK as it only showed me UK, and I couldn't specify London. Think 10 is plenty, though. Really thought I could get some 10-15K nights @ Marriotts, but there seem to be no lower-end brands in Europe.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 17, 2014, 01:57:39 AM
Points posted to my mom's UA account over Yom Tov and just booked the VCE-ZRH-FCO <24 hour stopover for 15K UA and $50 pax!

Any thoughts on the hotels?
So far, seems like it makes sense to use the 4 Hyatt nights at PH Paris and use my UR to get the 5th night. Regarding the Marriott points, based on the avg costs I posted above and the fact that I have 80K, it seems like I can only get 2 nights out of them, so I might as well use them when I'll be somewhere for 2 nights, i.e. Amsterdam.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Marco Polo on April 17, 2014, 07:57:51 AM
Points posted to my mom's UA account over Yom Tov and just booked the VCE-ZRH-FCO <24 hour stopover for 15K UA and $50 pax!

Any thoughts on the hotels?
So far, seems like it makes sense to use the 4 Hyatt nights at PH Paris and use my UR to get the 5th night. Regarding the Marriott points, based on the avg costs I posted above and the fact that I have 80K, it seems like I can only get 2 nights out of them, so I might as well use them when I'll be somewhere for 2 nights, i.e. Amsterdam.
See is there is C&P availability at the PH for one of your nights. Or it may be worthwhile to buy a night from someone.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: sky121 on April 17, 2014, 09:31:14 AM
What hotel are you planning for Venice?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 17, 2014, 09:40:10 AM
See is there is C&P availability at the PH for one of your nights. Or it may be worthwhile to buy a night from someone.
Thanks I'll look into it. Do you suggest booking it all online or calling up? Any difference?
What hotel are you planning for Venice?
Unsure. Suggestions? I should still have SPG, IC, and some MR.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 17, 2014, 11:41:55 AM
I called up to take care of it. Got the 4 free nights - woo hoo! For the 5th night, it's either 30K UR as Ergel said, $1000 cash, or C&P will be 15K plus $300. I guess the Q is: Is this the best use of 30K UR? At this point, I only need hotel stays as all the flights are booked. I'm not great with the math value calculations, but if UR = 1.4 then 30K = $420 which is much less than $1000. Right? That's how it calculates out?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on April 17, 2014, 12:13:25 PM
Correct. Just book it with your UR
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: sky121 on April 17, 2014, 01:34:01 PM
Why not buy the last night off someone?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on April 17, 2014, 01:40:20 PM
Why not buy the last night off someone?

Seems strange to have three separate accounts book a single stay, no?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 17, 2014, 01:47:17 PM
Seems strange to have three separate accounts book a single stay, no?
On the phone, I explained 2 nights are mine and 2 are my spouse. She didn't seem to care at all...
Why not buy the last night off someone?
And as long as I can buy it for less than $420 it would make sense to buy it from someone then? I guess that would depend on what I could get it for because if not for having points, I wouldn't stay at the PH. I wouldn't spend $400 to spend the night there. I'd rather just stay somewhere cheaper.

Additionally, I realized I have 1K HGP and my wife has 4K HGP. I see there's a form you need to fill out and email to them to combine the points. If I did that, I would only need to transfer 25K UR.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: sky121 on April 17, 2014, 01:49:25 PM
On the phone, I explained 2 nights are mine and 2 are my spouse. She didn't seem to care at all...And as long as I can buy it for less than $420 it would make sense to buy it from someone then? I guess that would depend on what I could get it for because if not for having points, I wouldn't stay at the PH. I wouldn't spend $400 to spend the night there. I'd rather just stay somewhere cheaper.

Additionally, I realized I have 1K HGP and my wife has 4K HGP. I see there's a form you need to fill out and email to them to combine the points. If I did that, I would only need to transfer 25K UR.

It would still be cheaper to buy a night. For the value of 25UR you could buy a suite night.  As far as the issue of having different names that's a different story. Not sure it would be a problem.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on April 17, 2014, 01:58:20 PM
On the phone, I explained 2 nights are mine and 2 are my spouse. She didn't seem to care at all...
Of course not, but what if you had a night from a third account? Your dogs account?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 17, 2014, 02:08:10 PM
Of course not, but what if you had a night from a third account? Your dogs account?
Heh, perhaps I should just transfer my points. Have you heard of this before? To transfer HGP, you need to download a PDF form, fill it out and email it to them (doesn't even say how long processing takes). Form also says HGP can only be transferred in an amount that brings the account to capacity to reach an award. That implies to me that I'll get rejected for combining 1+4 unless I already sent the 25K UR to one of the accounts.

It would still be cheaper to buy a night. For the value of 25UR you could buy a suite night.  As far as the issue of having different names that's a different story. Not sure it would be a problem.

Trying to find out about the different names, but either way what does buying the night gain me financially? So, I buy a $300 night and now have UR to use to book another night in the next city. If I use my UR instead and am forced to pay for a hotel in the next city, I wouldn't choose a $300 hotel...
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 17, 2014, 02:46:47 PM
Ok add this Q to the mix. I just spoke with SPG to think of ways to use my 58K. The rep pointed out the "stay 4 nights and get the 5th free" deal. Paris is the only city I'm in for 5 nights. The cheapest hotels available there are the Le Meridian and Sheraton which are both 16K/night = 64K for the 4 nights + 5th free. Meaning I'd have to transfer 18K MR to SPG to have enough, which really means I'm paying 18K MR to have that last night and all this would be to stay at a lower level hotel and not the PH. Ok I wrote this out for my craziness sake, but it does not seem to be worth it to take advantage of the 5 night deal.

Perhaps I should be satisfied with 1 luxury hotel on our stay, v'zehu.

I can use the SPG, for example, for my 4 nights in Venice at the Sheraton for 7K/night and still have 30K leftover. Much more valuable (in terms of how many free nights I can get) use of points.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Super Speed on April 17, 2014, 03:07:27 PM

I can use the SPG, for example, for my 4 nights in Venice at the Sheraton for 7K/night and still have 30K leftover. Much more valuable (in terms of how many free nights I can get) use of points.
This.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 17, 2014, 03:11:12 PM
This.
:) 7K is about as cheap as I can find an SPG, right?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Super Speed on April 17, 2014, 03:18:19 PM

:) 7K is about as cheap as I can find an SPG, right?
I believe so.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Emkay on April 17, 2014, 03:22:47 PM
:) 7K is about as cheap as I can find an SPG, right?
yes
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 17, 2014, 03:39:42 PM
Scratch that. VCE Sheraton is not actually in VCE. #awkward
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on April 17, 2014, 03:51:09 PM
Heh, perhaps I should just transfer my points. Have you heard of this before? To transfer HGP, you need to download a PDF form, fill it out and email it to them (doesn't even say how long processing takes). Form also says HGP can only be transferred in an amount that brings the account to capacity to reach an award. That implies to me that I'll get rejected for combining 1+4 unless I already sent the 25K UR to one of the accounts.
I'm confused. Why not just transfer from UR to the same Hyatt account?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 17, 2014, 03:52:42 PM
I'm confused. Why not just transfer from UR to the same Hyatt account?
I guess to save 1000 points. Perhaps not worth it.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 17, 2014, 05:31:13 PM
Wow, just got a response that they transferred the points! Fastest transfer ever.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: sky121 on April 17, 2014, 07:34:52 PM
Scratch that. VCE Sheraton is not actually in VCE. #awkward

In Venice I'd recommend the Westin. Thought it's a bit of a walk on Shabbos.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 17, 2014, 07:45:44 PM
In Venice I'd recommend the Westin. Thought it's a bit of a walk on Shabbos.
Prob is that it's 27750/night, so I'd only have enough for 2 nights, and we're staying there for 4. Someone suggested going with AirBNB.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: sky121 on April 17, 2014, 07:50:35 PM
Prob is that it's 27750/night, so I'd only have enough for 2 nights, and we're staying there for 4. Someone suggested going with AirBNB.

Might be a good idea anyways since you could get a place closer for Shabbos. Not that walking is a bad thing. Meanwhile nights could also open up. But better to have something just in case.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 17, 2014, 07:53:39 PM
Might be a good idea anyways since you could get a place closer for Shabbos. Not that walking is a bad thing. Meanwhile nights could also open up. But better to have something just in case.
Right. Ya we wouldn't mind walking though. What do you mean nights might open up. Where?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: sky121 on April 17, 2014, 07:56:17 PM
Right. Ya we wouldn't mind walking though. What do you mean nights might open up. Where?

I meant cheaper nights. But I guess that wouldn't help you anyways.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 18, 2014, 09:34:02 AM
Just transferred the 25K UR to HGP. Took literally 1 minute. Just booked the 5th night. 5 nights in a $1000/night hotel... for free. (Well, except for the cost of a few VRs.) Amazing. This one makes me want to thank you guys again for all your help and Dan for making this possible.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 18, 2014, 10:44:57 AM
Went through SPG.com to find all the 7K nights in the cities I'll be staying in. With 58K SPG, I can get 8 nights this way.

Anyone have any experience with these hotels?

Barcelona (3 nights)
Four Points by Sheraton Diagonal

Rome (3 nights, and 1 night later on as an overnight connection)
Sheraton Roma
Sheraton Golf Parca de' Medici

London (4 nights)
Sheraton Heathrow (Although IINM, LHR is not close to attractions/Jewish community.)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 18, 2014, 11:03:25 AM
For the departure you ended up doing NYC MUC FRA TLV?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 18, 2014, 11:08:07 AM
For the departure you ended up doing NYC MUC FRA TLV?
NYC-FRA-MUC-TLV but yea, why?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 18, 2014, 11:10:06 AM
NYC-FRA-MUC-TLV but yea, why?
You may wanna keep on checking if it opens up direct FRA TLV.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 18, 2014, 11:12:14 AM
You may wanna keep on checking if it opens up direct FRA TLV.
Gotcha. Just checked, nothing new but I can keep checking randomly. Would there be a change fee?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on April 18, 2014, 11:32:36 AM
Went through SPG.com to find all the 7K nights in the cities I'll be staying in. With 58K SPG, I can get 8 nights this way.

Anyone have any experience with these hotels?

Barcelona (3 nights)
Four Points by Sheraton Diagonal

Rome (3 nights, and 1 night later on as an overnight connection)
Sheraton Roma
Sheraton Golf Parca de' Medici

London (4 nights)
Sheraton Heathrow (Although IINM, LHR is not close to attractions/Jewish community.)
London, heathrow is far from everything (like staying in an ewr hotel for a trip to nyc).
Are you in London for shabbos?

The jewish community is in golder's green, which is like staying in Flatbush for a trip to NYC.
There is also a shul in marble arch which is near to all the attractions.

Neither rome property is in a great locaiton
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 18, 2014, 12:25:35 PM
London, heathrow is far from everything (like staying in an ewr hotel for a trip to nyc).
Are you in London for shabbos?

The jewish community is in golder's green, which is like staying in Flatbush for a trip to NYC.
There is also a shul in marble arch which is near to all the attractions.

That's what I figured and yes we're there for Shabbos. If I don't have a particular reason to stay in Golder's Green, do you suggest staying by Marble Arch for convenience?

Neither rome property is in a great locaiton
Ah, so then maybe I'll have to settle for more expensive SPG options and just get less nights.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on April 18, 2014, 12:42:00 PM
That's what I figured and yes we're there for Shabbos. If I don't have a particular reason to stay in Golder's Green, do you suggest staying by Marble Arch for convenience?
We stayed at marble arch. Although, it will likely be more expensive.
Also, it's not close to any food. We ordered shabbos food online from justkosher.co.uk and had them deliver directly to our hotel. charged 10 pounds for delivery.

Quote
Ah, so then maybe I'll have to settle for more expensive SPG options and just get less nights.
Or look into non-chain hotels? I really don't recommend changing hotels on a three night stay.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 18, 2014, 12:50:33 PM
We stayed at marble arch. Although, it will likely be more expensive.
Also, it's not close to any food. We ordered shabbos food online from justkosher.co.uk and had them deliver directly to our hotel. charged 10 pounds for delivery.
Gotcha, thanks for the tip. From a quick look, there's a Marriott there for 40K. I could use my 80K + open a cc for my wife and get another 80K. I'm going to look at other options too.

Or look into non-chain hotels? I really don't recommend changing hotels on a three night stay.
Oh yeah, I didn't mean that I would break up the 3 nights. I meant that if I have to book more expensive hotels (which seems to be the case), I'll just be getting less nights out of my 58K SPG.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 18, 2014, 01:23:40 PM
Just went through the IHGs. Only BCN has nights for 10K (Holiday Inn Express). Looks like my 80K IC won't be getting me 8 nights either...
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on April 18, 2014, 01:33:16 PM
I was gonna say, it looks like you bit off more than you can chew with hotel nights
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 18, 2014, 01:42:02 PM
I was gonna say, it looks like you bit off more than you can chew with hotel nights
Yeah, so either I use Zaidy's money :) for hotels, which I was hoping to avoid so I could use the money for taxis/trains/attractions or I get some more cards. My wife doesn't have an SP yet, or Marriott, or IHG. I'm thinking of going for a 3BM for those since I already have some currency with them. Have been very nervous since the end of VR, but Marriott and IHG are only 1K spend, so I can try out AP.

Anyway, here's the lineup for nights:
In Israel, we're staying by Zaidy.
Then there's 33 nights in Europe.
2 nights staying by people my family knows
1 BRG booked
5 Hyatts (incl. the 1 night from UR transferred to Hyatt)
2 Melias
That's 10.
Then, I should be able to pull off:
2 Marriotts (@35-40K/night)
3 SPG (@~20K/night)
4 IHG (@20K/night)
1 MR (have 25K)
If those work out, that's another 10. Leaving me with 13 more to go... I can look for more BRGs technically, lol.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: stbaum on April 18, 2014, 02:57:41 PM
Yehuda that's gonna be some TR. Can't wait :)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Super Speed on April 18, 2014, 03:13:46 PM

Yehuda that's gonna be some TR. Can't wait :)
+1
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 18, 2014, 03:26:59 PM
Yehuda that's gonna be some TR. Can't wait :)
Iyh :)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 18, 2014, 05:37:21 PM
Gotcha. Just checked, nothing new but I can keep checking randomly. Would there be a change fee?
Not sure. You may wanna HUCA   ;)

Also, if LX becomes available NYC ZRH TLV and you wouldn't mind changing AGAIN  ;) I would recommend changing to LX. They have real business class seat on the European leg vs LH.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 18, 2014, 05:53:12 PM
Not sure. You may wanna HUCA   ;)

Also, if LX becomes available NYC ZRH TLV and you wouldn't mind changing AGAIN  ;) I would recommend changing to LX. They have real business class seat on the European leg vs LH.

Heh thanks. Interesting. I'll check avail as time gets closer. LH told me they're updating the fleet and it's possible it'll be lie-flat by the time I go.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 19, 2014, 09:29:14 PM
Heh thanks. Interesting. I'll check avail as time gets closer. LH told me they're updating the fleet and it's possible it'll be lie-flat by the time I go.
BS. Don't trust them. Unless they can give you some kind of link... UA keeps on telling me they will be updating their KSML for the longest time..
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on April 19, 2014, 09:37:17 PM
BS. Don't trust them. Unless they can give you some kind of link... UA keeps on telling me they will be updating their KSML for the longest time..
Except that LH is truly updating their business class and is rolling out over their whole fleet.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 19, 2014, 09:46:56 PM
Except that LH is truly updating their business class and is rolling out over their whole fleet.
+1 They told me to call back closer to the flight to see which exact metal I'll be flying to see if it's the updated one or not.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 19, 2014, 10:02:38 PM
Except that LH is truly updating their business class and is rolling out over their whole fleet.
Give me one updated one for the local Europe fleet.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 20, 2014, 09:51:28 AM
Just did some searching on UA. I could technically change outbound to EWR-YYZ-IST-TLV and stay in business, but I don't think that's any more convenient than EWR-FRA-MUC-TLV. Maybe I'll check again in a few weeks, but I'm definitely not going to proactively work on it. The current routing is fine :)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 24, 2014, 12:03:48 AM
Just realized I can use my unused airline miles for hotel stays! Yes, I know it's not a great use of miles, but my whole miles-goal is really all about this trip. I can worry about restocking in the future. I didn't check every program, but my 110K LH can be used for hotels. Same for my 43K BA and my mother's 20K UA. That should definitely add a couple more nights to the mix.

Just applied today for SP, Marriott, IHG for my wife. Security pend on all of them and in the process of taking care of that.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: HP58 on April 24, 2014, 12:22:32 AM
Can you post your itinerary so far in the wiki? I'm planning a trip in August and the time you'll be using in each spot would be helpful.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SOS on April 24, 2014, 01:02:39 AM
Can you post your itinerary so far in the wiki? I'm planning a trip in August and the time you'll be using in each spot would be helpful.

+1
Thanks for this thread
It's helping me plan my Europe trip this summer
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ad120 on April 24, 2014, 01:15:09 AM
If not mentioned already, tolls in Italy is bloody fortune. Sometimes 30 Euro.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: sky121 on April 24, 2014, 09:58:37 AM
Just realized I can use my unused airline miles for hotel stays! Yes, I know it's not a great use of miles, but my whole miles-goal is really all about this trip. I can worry about restocking in the future. I didn't check every program, but my 110K LH can be used for hotels. Same for my 43K BA and my mother's 20K UA. That should definitely add a couple more nights to the mix.

Just applied today for SP, Marriott, IHG for my wife. Security pend on all of them and in the process of taking care of that.

You're probably better of getting rid of the miles and just paying for hotels.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 24, 2014, 10:00:08 AM
Can you post your itinerary so far in the wiki? I'm planning a trip in August and the time you'll be using in each spot would be helpful.
+1
Thanks for this thread
It's helping me plan my Europe trip this summer
Done! My pleasure. Definitely 1/2 the reason I'm posting all this info.

If not mentioned already, tolls in Italy is bloody fortune. Sometimes 30 Euro.

Thanks for the tip! I'll have to look into the tolls on my route, but the money may be worth the convenience of travelling on my own accord w/o train schedules + travelling to the train stations. Don't know where the stations are, but if I have to taxi from the hotel to the train, that could be just as expensive as paying tolls.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 24, 2014, 10:00:58 AM
You're probably better of getting rid of the miles and just paying for hotels.
What do you mean by "getting rid"? Saving them for a future trip? I'm short 10-15 nights. At $100 per, that's quite a chunk of change that could otherwise be used for food, taxis, etc.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: sky121 on April 24, 2014, 10:02:05 AM
What do you mean by "getting rid"? Saving them for a future trip?

Not what I meant.  ;)

You have over $2000 worth of miles right there.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 24, 2014, 11:09:05 AM
Not what I meant.  ;)

You have over $2000 worth of miles right there.
Ohhh hahaha. Yeah well I don't do that. My LOR.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 24, 2014, 01:23:31 PM
As someone who has never really planned a trip before, what expectations should I have with taxis?
For example, I've been planning my day in Madrid/Toledo, and I'm sure what I found will be applicable in basically every city - although perhaps without the train.
Taxi from airport to hotel. Taxi from hotel to activity #1. Taxi from activity #1 to train station. Taxi from train station to Jewish Toledo area. Taxi from Jewish Toledo area to train station. Taxi from train station to hotel. Taxi from hotel to airport.
That's 7 taxis. I mean it seems like a lot, but renting a car isn't practical for travelling within Madrid and probably any other European city.

So just looking for ppl with experience - I should be expecting to take a lot of taxis, right?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: sky121 on April 24, 2014, 01:26:22 PM
Side note. Whatever you think you're going to spend on the trip (after doing the math) I'd add at least $1000 to.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 24, 2014, 01:26:54 PM
Side note. Whatever you think you're going to spend on the tri(after doing the math) I'd add at least $1000 to.
+1 I agree
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Marco Polo on April 24, 2014, 01:36:52 PM
As someone who has never really planned a trip before, what expectations should I have with taxis?
For example, I've been planning my day in Madrid/Toledo, and I'm sure what I found will be applicable in basically every city - although perhaps without the train.
Taxi from airport to hotel. Taxi from hotel to activity #1. Taxi from activity #1 to train station. Taxi from train station to Jewish Toledo area. Taxi from Jewish Toledo area to train station. Taxi from train station to hotel. Taxi from hotel to airport.
That's 7 taxis. I mean it seems like a lot, but renting a car isn't practical for travelling within Madrid and probably any other European city.

So just looking for ppl with experience - I should be expecting to take a lot of taxis, right?
Maybe try to see if you can find a driver. May be cheaper.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SOS on April 24, 2014, 01:49:51 PM
I just noticed in the wiki that you want rent a car in Venice??
What are you gonna do with a car in Venice? Where will you park?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 24, 2014, 01:50:39 PM
Maybe try to see if you can find a driver. May be cheaper.
Interesting idea. Hard to calculate the costs of each taxi trip, though, to know if it's worth it.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 24, 2014, 01:51:33 PM
I just noticed in the wiki that you want rent a car in Venice??
What are you gonna do with a car in Venice? Where will you park?
Rental car is to drive from Rome to Florence to Pisa to Venice. Will return the car upon arrival in Venice.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Marco Polo on April 24, 2014, 02:16:24 PM
Interesting idea. Hard to calculate the costs of each taxi trip, though, to know if it's worth it.
I'm sure buried somewhere online, you can find rough prices for what people paid for trips.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 24, 2014, 05:20:32 PM
I'm sure buried somewhere online, you can find rough prices for what people paid for trips.
Been speaking with a tour guide who does Toledo, and he suggested checking this out http://www.worldtaximeter.com/ for taxi costs. If it's accurate, it looks great!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 27, 2014, 10:12:29 AM
Just booked the Sheraton Roma for my 3 nights in Rome. Was one of the only 7K SPG nights in the cities I'm travelling too, so I just wanted to lock it up now. Google Maps says it's 20 minutes from FCO, 10 minutes to the Colosseum and 10 minutes to the Jewish Ghetto. And as usual, made sure to call up SPG and add a request for a possible upgrade since it's our honeymoon.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ChAiM'l on April 27, 2014, 10:54:45 AM
I stayed at the Sheraton once. Hotel is OK, not the best area, but they have a shuttle bus to and from the town centre throughout the day.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 27, 2014, 10:57:32 AM
I stayed at the Sheraton once. Hotel is OK, not the best area, but they have a shuttle bus to and from the town centre throughout the day.
Yeah, I realized with the amount of points I have and needing 33 hotel nights, I'll be satisfied with OK hotels for most of my trip. (Just enjoying my 5 nights at PHP. :) ) Shuttle bus rocks! Saves RT taxi every day. Thanks for the tip.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 27, 2014, 12:08:26 PM
Just booked the Sheraton Golf Parco de' Medici for my overnight connection in ZRH-FCO-LHR. Same 7K SPG, 5 minutes closer to the airport, and figured might as well try out a different hotel. :)
11 free nights booked, 22 to go!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 27, 2014, 01:34:26 PM
So, this was fun...
If you read upstream about the Melia deal I jumped on, I now realize I made a mistake. I booked both nights for MAD - the night I land in Spain and the night I leave Spain. But, I just realized I'm actually in SVQ for my last night in Spain, going SVQ-MAD-FCO all starting off the following morning. The Melia deal didn't have enough points for a free night in SVQ, so I cancelled the MAD reservation I mistakenly made for that night.

I just got off the phone with AA (feels like I haven't called them in ages) and pushed off my MAD-BCN OWE flight from leaving the evening after I land in MAD to the next morning. This allows me to have a truly complete day in MAD to see the Royal Palace (or some other attraction) and make the RT train to Toledo, that will likely make Ergel and sky happy :). Because I'm now staying in MAD another night, I used the Melia points to book the same hotel for a 2nd night. Would have been a shame to let them go to waste. :-D This change, however, is lowering my stay in BCN from 2 days to 1.5 days, which would probably make Ergel and sky crazy, but for the 1/2 day I think I can do the Jewish Quarter and for the full day I think I can do 2-3 out of La Rambla, Park Guell, and Casa Milla which are all pretty close to each other.

Besides for being able to use the Melia points, I now shortened BCN to 2 nights instead of 3, which works out perfectly for my SPG reserve. I just booked the Four Points by Sheraton Barcelona Diagonal for 7K SPG/night and (found the only remaining SPG in one of my itinerary cities that would come out to 16K or less based on price and how many nights I'm there for and) booked the Sheraton Zurich for my 1 night there for 16K SPG, which really means...

I just used 58K SPG for 7 free nights and cleared out the account to basically 0.
4 nights in Rome.
2 nights in Barcelona.
1 night in Zurich.

Yeah, okay, I'm proud of myself. We can call this a productive day. Thanks, G-d for letting it work out.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: sky121 on April 27, 2014, 01:37:10 PM


I just got off the phone with AA (feels like I haven't called them in ages)
lol

DDF side affect :)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: CS1 on April 27, 2014, 01:43:15 PM
So, this was fun...
...
I just used 58K SPG for 7 free nights and cleared out the account to basically 0.
4 nights in Rome.
2 nights in Barcelona.
1 night in Zurich.

Yeah, okay, I'm proud of myself. We can call this a productive day. Thanks, G-d for letting it work out.

Great itinerary -- esp. for not spending cash.
1) Are you SPG Gold? So you'll hopefully get some upgrades and 4pm check-outs to add value to your stays...
2) You may earn more spg before your trip, so you can book add'l Cash & Points if needed.
3) Thanks, Dan! (he's taught us well, B"H.)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 27, 2014, 02:05:10 PM
lol

DDF side affect :)
OWE side affect, too. ;)
Great itinerary -- esp. for not spending cash.
1) Are you SPG Gold? So you'll hopefully get some upgrades and 4pm check-outs to add value to your stays...
2) You may earn more spg before your trip, so you can book add'l Cash & Points if needed.
3) Thanks, Dan! (he's taught us well, B"H.)
Thanks, that's the goal!
1) Nope. Hopefully the honeymoon upgrade requests get me some, and if not, not.
2) My daily spending is only on SP and 5x Freedom. I only use random cards to hit the bonus. So, I likely won't get more SPG, but it's a good idea.
2) Figured I've thanked him enough times at this point that it gets cheesy. I'll be sure to thank him and everyone here once it's all finalized. :)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: CS1 on April 27, 2014, 02:19:34 PM
OWE side affect, too. ;)Thanks, that's the goal!
1) Nope. Hopefully the honeymoon upgrade requests get me some, and if not, not.
2) My daily spending is only on SP and 5x Freedom. I only use random cards to hit the bonus. So, I likely won't get more SPG, but it's a good idea.
2) Figured I've thanked him enough times at this point that it gets cheesy. I'll be sure to thank him and everyone here once it's all finalized. :)
all good -- It looks like your trip is in the summer. You may already have 5 stays posted on your spg.com account. Are you close to that?

So, if it were me, I'd try for some $80 stays at some Cat 1 or 2 locations to hit Gold in time prior or during this special trip.
(I'm not familiar with the European starwood hotels and their summer upgrade options, however in the USA, they were sometimes double the square feet!)
The earlier check-in options and 4:00pm check-out times occasionally translates into almost another day in the hotel value that I'd normally have to pay a new day for -- even if it's just a safe place for luggage before or after your night there -- while touring/on a day trip, etc...
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 27, 2014, 02:24:06 PM
all good -- It looks like your trip is in the summer. You may already have 5 stays posted on your spg.com account. Are you close to that?

So, if it were me, I'd try for some $80 stays at some Cat 1 or 2 locations to hit Gold in time prior or during this special trip.
(I'm not familiar with the European starwood hotels and their summer upgrade options, however in the USA, they were sometimes double the square feet!)
The earlier check-in options and 4:00pm check-out times occasionally translates into almost another day in the hotel value that I'd normally have to pay a new day for -- even if it's just a safe place for luggage before or after your night there -- while touring/on a day trip, etc...
I have 4 stays (2 from each CC) plus 2 in my wife's but I'm sure those don't combine. I don't think the extra space is worth the money on booking those nights. We're not too picky, and I'm still hoping the honeymoon thing might get a few upgrades/late checkouts. I actually thought about the luggage situation. I was hoping, as I read in some places, that the hotel may let me leave luggage at the front desk while touring. Ever heard of that?

--
Also, just checked my AA balances and realized they credited back 10% of redeemed miles, which means our 90K pax OWE netted us 18K AA. Pretty cool, did not realize that.

And for the current hotel count...
15 out of 33 nights booked! Progress!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: CS1 on April 27, 2014, 02:31:48 PM
I have 4 stays (2 from each CC) plus 2 in my wife's but I'm sure those don't combine. I don't think the extra space is worth the money on booking those nights. We're not too picky, and I'm still hoping the honeymoon thing might get a few upgrades/late checkouts. I actually thought about the luggage situation. I was hoping, as I read in some places, that the hotel may let me leave luggage at the front desk while touring. Ever heard of that?

--
Also, just checked my AA balances and realized they credited back 10% of redeemed miles, which means our 90K pax OWE netted us 18K AA. Pretty cool, did not realize that.

And for the current hotel count...
15 out of 33 nights booked! Progress!
True -- I think that thy'll let you keep your luggage in a first floor holding room.

4 stays is great. (I wish the wife's would combine, but they don't combine stays, just let you combine points...)
Can you ask a relative to open a new Amex SPG card with your home address?
The 5,000 referral and the new 25K points (THAT, they'll let you transfer internally within spg.com) and some AP points can help you get some May/June nights/stays locally to get you Gold in time for your trip. Either way, I'm sure it will be great.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on April 27, 2014, 02:33:20 PM
Hotels will store luggage for you after checkout.

Not worth it to spend cash for spg gold. Call them on the phone and ask nicely and they will often give it to you
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 27, 2014, 02:35:25 PM
True -- I think that thy'll let you keep your luggage in a first floor holding room.

4 stays is great. (I wish the wife's would combine, but they don't combine stays, just let you combine points...)
Can you ask a relative to open a new Amex SPG card with your home address?
The 5,000 referral and the new 25K points (THAT, they'll let you transfer internally within spg.com) and some AP points can help you get some May/June nights/stays locally to get you Gold in time for your trip. Either way, I'm sure it will be great.
That would be great!
Interesting, I probably could work that out although having to spend $5K on the card isn't going to happen. I have 3 new cards in the mail and have just began to touch AP. Don't know how I would do 5K. Thanks for the ideas, though. :)

Hotels will store luggage for you after checkout.

Not worth it to spend cash for spg gold. Call them on the phone and ask nicely and they will often give it to you
Fantastic.
Will definitely try that and report back.
Like your shoutout?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: CS1 on April 27, 2014, 02:36:02 PM
Hotels will store luggage for you after checkout.

Not worth it to spend cash for spg gold. Call them on the phone and ask nicely and they will often give it to you
Good idea! It's been done by several DDFers... Try it out.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 27, 2014, 03:00:24 PM
Hmm... just failed on 2 attempts. Maybe I'm not so lucky...
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SOS on April 27, 2014, 07:37:50 PM
Hmm... just failed on 2 attempts. Maybe I'm not so lucky...

I have been trying for a week already and so far I didn't get upgraded
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: E R K on April 27, 2014, 07:43:20 PM
Tell them you plan on staying at a lot of SPG hotels in the near future and you have status at other hotels but would like to start using SPG. That's what I said after she said no.  She put me on hold and then approved it.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 27, 2014, 07:45:45 PM
Tell them you plan on staying at a lot of SPG hotels in the near future and you have status at other hotels but would like to start using SPG. That's what I said after she said no.  She put me on hold and then approved it.
I explained that I just book 7 nights today for my honeymoon and wanted the benefits, but no-go.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: E R K on April 27, 2014, 07:52:25 PM
HUCA and say you are planning many hotel stays in the near future and would like to stay with them, otherwise you will have to take your business elsewhere.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SOS on April 27, 2014, 08:03:14 PM
HUCA and say you are planning many hotel stays in the near future and would like to stay with them, otherwise you will have to take your business elsewhere.

When I said that, all they said was they can do the gold challenge, but they can't just upgrade me
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 28, 2014, 02:28:43 PM
Just booked the Holiday Inn Express Amsterdam - South for 20K/night IHG. All the 20K IHGs were about 15 minute drives to town. (Figured out where "town" was based on the locations of Centraal train station, Anne Frank House, Flower Market.) Then I used goDaven to see where the different Shuls were in the area with daily Minyanim. Beis Medrash Etz Chaim is a 4 minute walk to the hotel and also had the latest Shacharis at 8AM. ;)
So yeah, just sharing my ideas on how to decide on hotels in areas you don't know about it. Hope it helps.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: CS1 on April 28, 2014, 02:58:15 PM
Just booked the Holiday Inn Express Amsterdam - South for 20K/night IHG. All the 20K IHGs were about 15 minute drives to town. (Figured out where "town" was based on the locations of Centraal train station, Anne Frank House, Flower Market.) Then I used goDaven to see where the different Shuls were in the area with daily Minyanim. Beis Medrash Etz Chaim is a 4 minute walk to the hotel and also had the latest Shacharis at 8AM. ;)
So yeah, just sharing my ideas on how to decide on hotels in areas you don't know about it. Hope it helps.
excellent strategy for the touring destinations that are not as common.

Upon your return, it would be great to share a TR and highlight the smart choices, etc..
Yehoshua made a great map of his city. With those of us on DDF who have been to some of the other smaller locations, perhaps we can edit soething similar and give rankings of hotels, restaurants, etc...

(For example -- LA Link: https://mapsengine.google.com/map/edit?mid=z_h80BCOvmO8.kkLKAieASEmc)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 28, 2014, 03:06:51 PM
excellent strategy for the touring destinations that are not as common.

Upon your return, it would be great to share a TR and highlight the smart choices, etc..
Yehoshua made a great map of his city. With those of us on DDF who have been to some of the other smaller locations, perhaps we can edit soething similar and give rankings of hotels, restaurants, etc...

(For example -- LA Link: https://mapsengine.google.com/map/edit?mid=z_h80BCOvmO8.kkLKAieASEmc)

That's pretty cool. I was actually planning to have a running TR throughout my trip. Perhaps posting every night (if the wife allows) or maybe once every few days. I feel that by spending time each night, I'll remember details better, like taxi costs, attraction costs, long lines, etc.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Super Speed on April 28, 2014, 09:20:58 PM

That's pretty cool. I was actually planning to have a running TR throughout my trip. Perhaps posting every night (if the wife allows) or maybe once every few days. I feel that by spending time each night, I'll remember details better, like taxi costs, attraction costs, long lines, etc.
That would be awesome, I would live to do a quick Euro trip, I can pull out all the good stuff from your TRs. I'm sure many other people can gain as well.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 28, 2014, 09:49:20 PM
That would be awesome, I would live to do a quick Euro trip, I can pull out all the good stuff from your TRs. I'm sure many other people can gain as well.
I hope so as well. Expect to see @Yehuda's TR at the top of the TR board all the time instead of @Yehuda's Planning at the top of the Air board. :)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 29, 2014, 10:29:53 AM
Just booked the Eliott Hotel in Gibraltar for Shabbos. $165 (incl. $4 cc charge) Hopefully will be the only hotel night I have to pay for. :)
Having meals at my mother's coworker who lives there, so that's nice. Yes, I tried getting to stay by him, but he just offered meals, and of course we're more than appreciative of that.
He suggested the Eliott. In Spain/GIB thread, it also seemed that the Eliott was the "nicer" hotel (as opposed to the Rock Hotel) and it's apparently already up the hill that you would have to climb to get to the shuls if you stayed at the Rock. And from searching hotelscombined and wego, I found the Eliott to be a bit cheaper.

18 nights booked, 15 to go!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 29, 2014, 04:50:04 PM
Food for thought...
I haven't always thought about getting the best value for my points. For example, the Elliot I just booked was $165. I then saw in the Chase UR mall that it can be booked for 16K UR and immediately got excited bc it meant that the 1 night I thought I would have to pay for (since GIB has no hotels that are part of points-brands) could be free. However, after some math, it would not be a good value to use my points for this hotel. If UR are valued at 1.6cpp then 16K would be worth $256, much more than the $165 I paid. Obviously, points have more value when used for things that normally cost more money, like my outbound flight EWR-FRA-MUC-TLV for 60K UR (at 1.6 that's $960) which would cost, if paid outright in cash, about $4000. Therefore, math says to only use your points if the cash cost would be more than the points are worth, and logic dictates to hold onto your points for especially expensive flights/hotels to get the most value for your points.

At the same time, one of my main goals of getting into the credit card game is to travel to Europe for as cheap as possible. Even though Zaidy gave us some nice money for the trip, my mind is saying why spend $165 on a hotel when there are "leftover" points that can be used to book it for free? Take it even further, why pay $100 for a gondola ride in Venice, when I can use 5750 Avios for the experience? Obviously, I acknowledge that these are not very good uses for points, but part of me says just to try to make this trip as cheap as possible so that Zaidy's money (and my savings if we use up his money) can be used for as many things as possible that can't be booked with miles, like food/taxis.

ETA: Don't want to sell points.

That's my thought process. Would love to hear your thoughts.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: sky121 on April 29, 2014, 04:56:39 PM
For anyone who would get rid of their points and use the cash to book that would def be the way to go in many cases. If you won't go that route at all and don't want to put out the money and save your points for a better use then I guess go for it.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Emkay on April 29, 2014, 05:29:08 PM
,why pay $100 for a gondola ride in Venice, when I can use 5750 Avios for the experience?

imo thats actually a decent use for points If you  Were gonna back $100 for a gondola ride (which is not a good use of money)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Joe4007 on April 29, 2014, 05:29:45 PM
I suppose the bragging rights for "I've done a month long Europe/Israel trip with $0 out of pocket" are worth something as well :P
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Super Speed on April 29, 2014, 05:39:49 PM
I suppose the bragging rights for "I've done a month long Europe/Israel trip with $0 out of pocket" are worth something as well :P
Well said!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 29, 2014, 05:42:00 PM
For anyone who would get rid of their points and use the cash to book that would def be the way to go in many cases. If you won't go that route at all and don't want to put out the money and save your points for a better use then I guess go for it.
Correct, I don't want to get rid of my points. Added that to the post. A bit more bluntly. :)

imo thats actually a decent use for points If you  Were gonna back $100 for a gondola ride (which is not a good use of money)
Whoops, bad example then. How about 30K Avios to tour NYC in a limo? :-D

I suppose the bragging rights for "I've done a month long Europe/Israel trip in business with $0 out of pocket" are worth something as well :P
FTFY Agreed, although, we're at just about $900 pax right now. And it's 6.5 weeks. :-p
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ckmk47 on April 30, 2014, 09:38:38 AM
side idea on selling:  Making a ticket for someone you know (or a friend of a friend) and charging them less than they would have to pay if they booked cash.  That may pass the LOR test.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on April 30, 2014, 09:42:46 AM
side idea on selling:  Making a ticket for someone you know (or a friend of a friend) and charging them less than they would have to pay if they booked cash.  That may pass the LOR test.
-1
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 30, 2014, 09:46:19 AM
side idea on selling:  Making a ticket for someone you know (or a friend of a friend) and charging them less than they would have to pay if they booked cash.  That may pass the LOR test.
Meaning bc it's more like you're doing your friend a favor?
-1
Thoughts?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 30, 2014, 09:47:37 AM
The Airlines don't allow selling tickets either.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on April 30, 2014, 09:57:24 AM
The psak I got is that selling miles/flights is "Kol haover al daas baal habayis nikrah gazlan." Will make no difference how you go about it
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 30, 2014, 10:11:08 AM
Just found my psak in my old emails. I explained the miles situation and asked if the miles I got are considered mine and that I can do with them as I please even though the company's T&C has rules that limit what I can do.

"You havenít bought anything from them: they offer a special deal and say that if you fly often enough, they will give you some benefits. They have the rules and conditions under which they will give you these benefits. If you donít fit the conditions, then you canít use the benefits."
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 30, 2014, 10:54:00 AM
BTW talking about LOT, I just checked, there is availability 6/9-11-12 for 2 people in business class. I just checked JFK-WAW.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 30, 2014, 10:57:33 AM
Though nothing really from WAW to TLV

If you can go 5/28 there is availability JFK-WAW-TLV.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 30, 2014, 11:38:36 AM
Ha thanks for looking.
Don't think that early would work for us. Also EWR is really convenient as I can leave my car for 6.5 weeks in my mother's driveway 15 min away. :)

I'll keep randomly checking UA to see if any other routes open up, especially last minute. For ex. EWR-MUC has availability in J today and tomorrow. I already have my MUC-TLV flight, so if something like that opens right before we leave, I'll try to get on it.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 30, 2014, 01:18:40 PM
Or something with LX.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 30, 2014, 01:22:05 PM
Or something with LX.
Right that too. EWR-MUC is UA. Do they have nice J?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 30, 2014, 01:27:26 PM
Right that too. EWR-MUC is UA. Do they have nice J?
Not bad. At lease not like the old CO 777 3 cabin configuration.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 30, 2014, 01:28:19 PM
Not bad. At lease not like the old CO 777 3 cabin configuration.
Aha. Also, after looking at the change fee chart, if I switch I'm going to pay $75pax.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 30, 2014, 01:34:11 PM
Correct, but keep in mind, by changing to LX the fees will only be $50 not $140, so you might come out on the plus side!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 30, 2014, 01:35:02 PM
Correct, but keep in mind, by changing to LX the fees will only be $50 not $140, so you might come out on the plus side!
Valid! ;D
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 30, 2014, 01:43:43 PM
Just looked again. This could actually be done if I were to go the last week of May, but here are the catches:
On LX, there's no Saver business avail.
On UA, there's Saver economy, but it means hoping Plan B works.
Those flights land in ZRH in the early morning. ZRH-TLV only leaves at about 10PM.
ZRH-TLV (LX) has Saver business avail, but it means landing in TLV at 3AM.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 30, 2014, 02:07:37 PM
These are for late May?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 30, 2014, 02:11:21 PM
These are for late May?
Yeah, last week.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 30, 2014, 02:12:21 PM
For the last week of May you have LOT as I posted above.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on April 30, 2014, 02:13:39 PM
IMHO LOT's business product is one of the nicest business class out there.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 30, 2014, 02:18:04 PM
For the last week of May you have LOT as I posted above.
Right, but JFK is not great.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SOS on April 30, 2014, 02:19:16 PM
Just looked again. This could actually be done if I were to go the last week of May, but here are the catches:
On LX, there's no Saver business avail.
On UA, there's Saver economy, but it means hoping Plan B works.
Those flights land in ZRH in the early morning. ZRH-TLV only leaves at about 10PM.
ZRH-TLV (LX) has Saver business avail, but it means landing in TLV at 3AM.

you could spend the day in zurich and change your vce - fco flight that stops in zurich and you can stop somewhere else
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on April 30, 2014, 02:24:32 PM
you could spend the day in zurich and change your vce - fco flight that stops in zurich and you can stop somewhere else
True, can't say the idea didn't cross my mind. But, I'm sure LH J will be stunning for a young couple who's flying history is maxed out at economy to TLV. Plus, VCE-ZRH-FCO for 23:55 hours worked out so beautifully, it must be a sign from G-d to take it. :) Also, would be hard to find a nearby destination worth going to that I could fly *A to.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 01, 2014, 09:50:22 AM
Just bought Travel Insurance. Went with Travel Guard as most insurances I researched were really close in price and family has used TG before. Cost was $130 for the 2 of us.

Some things I learned about Insurance (at least with TG):
Quote was MUCH cheaper with a NY address than a NJ. (I have both, so I could have used either one.) NJ was about $235 for the 2 of us.
Quote was the same whether the destination was Israel or UK. (It said to use the country you'll be in for the longest.)
They have 2 plans, Gold and Plat. For the most part, there's no difference just that coverages are higher on the Plat. package. I went with Plat. bc it was only $40 total more than Gold, so I figured why cheap out and take a chance of regretting it later.
I did not opt for additional coverages like car rental, extra medical, or accidental death on plane. My domestic health insurance said they'll cover things abroad, the plan comes with medical also ($50K coverage), and the extra medical is just increased coverages.

Think that's everything I can share about it. Hopefully we won't need it, but be sure that if we do, I'll do my best to include it in the TR.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: CS1 on May 02, 2014, 12:03:27 AM
will Chase SP cover the car insurance?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 02, 2014, 04:44:17 PM
will Chase SP cover the car insurance?
I know UMPE will. According to [urlhttp://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=4830.msg765510#msg765510]this[/url], so will SP.

To update the hotel situation...
This past week I opened up 5 cards SP, IHG, Marriott, PRG, EveryDay Preferred (EDP?). Almost done with the spends, but have been extremely unsuccessful getting Chase/Amex to move up the statement dates on my first bills so that the points post sooner. Most of the cc's won't close till the end of this month/beg of June. To avoid the possibility of losing out on the rooms I need, I just booked refundable stays at almost all the remaining hotels I need. Once the points post, I'll call up to either switch the payment method to rewards or just cancel and rebook with my points.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SOS on May 02, 2014, 04:47:28 PM
What hotel are you staying in Venice?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 02, 2014, 05:31:40 PM
What hotel are you staying in Venice?
Goal is to stay at Comfort Hotel Diana. 10K Choice a night which will mean 10K MR a night.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SOS on May 03, 2014, 09:28:18 PM
Is it near the Jewish gehtto?
What star hotel is it?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 03, 2014, 09:38:05 PM
Is it near the Jewish gehtto?
What star hotel is it?
Don't know where the Jewish Ghetto is but it's 10 min from Gritti and 5 from Danielli which Dan has talked about as potential places in VCE, so I'm sure it can't be too far. It's 3 stars on TripAdivsor and rank 181/380 in VCE. It's not modern, rather oooold school. I didn't pick it for stars, I picked it as the only place I found that I could afford in points. All the SPG's are really expensive as is the Best Western there (like 30K or 35K/night).
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ad120 on May 04, 2014, 12:46:16 AM
Don't know where the Jewish Ghetto is but it's 10 min from Gritti and 5 from Danielli which Dan has talked about as potential places in VCE, so I'm sure it can't be too far. It's 3 stars on TripAdivsor and rank 181/380 in VCE. It's not modern, rather oooold school. I didn't pick it for stars, I picked it as the only place I found that I could afford in points. All the SPG's are really expensive as is the Best Western there (like 30K or 35K/night).
I rented an apt 2 doors down from Gam Gam on air bnb for $89 a night. You may want to check it out as the date gets closer provided the hotel policy has a generous cancelation policy.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SOS on May 04, 2014, 12:50:43 AM
I rented an apt 2 doors down from Gam Gam on air bnb for $89 a night. You may want to check it out as the date gets closer provided the hotel policy has a generous cancelation policy.
Do you remember what it was called?
Was it nice?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ad120 on May 04, 2014, 12:52:01 AM
Considering everyone has been so helpful by contributing with their knowledge of European cities, would you  rather visit Frankfurt or Vienna if you had an extended stopover?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: sky121 on May 04, 2014, 12:52:54 AM
Considering everyone has been so helpful by contributing with their knowledge of European cities, would you  rather visit Frankfurt or Vienna if you had an extended stopover?

Vienna. But then again I'm not a fan of visiting Germany.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ad120 on May 04, 2014, 12:58:00 AM
Do you remember what it was called?
Was it nice?
We paid $98 per night after fees total from Air bnb. We got second night free bec of a promo they were running. it was located right next door from gam gam and 4 mins from chabad by foot. The Boat stop is right outside. The master bedroom has two mattress on one frame, the living room has a bed and a pullout sofa. There is a small kitchen with two bathrooms.
https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/2035355?s=Sydm
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ad120 on May 04, 2014, 01:00:32 AM
We paid $98 per night after fees total from Air bnb. We got second night free bec of a promo they were running. it was located right next door from gam gam and 4 mins from chabad by foot. The Boat stop is right outside. The master bedroom has two mattress on one frame, the living room has a bed and a pullout sofa. There is a small kitchen with two bathrooms.
https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/2035355?s=Sydm
this building has a buzzer that you need to press to exit. However luckily the window on the door opens wide enough (i have a big hand) that allowes you to tuen the key from the outside and open it :)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ad120 on May 04, 2014, 01:12:17 AM
Vienna. But then again I'm not a fan of visiting Germany.
+1 However this may be an opportunity to visit a concentration camp. But with Vienna its possible to go to the chasam shofer considering it is a short distance away.
But from a tourist prospective, which city has better sights and what are they?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 04, 2014, 01:40:54 AM
I rented an apt 2 doors down from Gam Gam on air bnb for $89 a night. You may want to check it out as the date gets closer provided the hotel policy has a generous cancelation policy.
Thanks, looking to go for free, though. When I mentioned "expensive" I meant expensive in points.
+1 However this may be an opportunity to visit a concentration camp. But with Vienna its possible to go to the chasam shofer considering it is a short distance away.
But from a tourist prospective, which city has better sights and what are they?
People may have been helpful here, and honestly, I don't care if you ask your questions here, but if you post your FRA and VIE q's in the master threads for those destinations, you'll probably get a lot more responses. There have been a handful of people helping me in this thread, but by posting in those threads, you might find help from people who specifically follow those threads to help, but may have never even looked at my thread once. Good luck!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ad120 on May 04, 2014, 01:44:14 AM
Thanks, looking to go for free, though. When I mentioned "expensive" I meant expensive in points.
Understood may be worth the money considering the price and convenience. Just a thought.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 04, 2014, 01:52:23 AM
Understood may be worth the money considering the price and convenience. Just a thought.
Thanks, it's definitely a good thought, but 40K MR for 4 nights at Diana, is not too expensive, and it's a 22 minute walk to Gam Gam. Not too bad.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SOS on May 04, 2014, 07:53:23 PM
this building has a buzzer that you need to press to exit. However luckily the window on the door opens wide enough (i have a big hand) that allowes you to tuen the key from the outside and open it :)

So basically it's not recommended for shabbos
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ad120 on May 05, 2014, 01:37:06 AM
So basically it's not recommended for shabbos
Incorrect. I was able to open the door with ease when I was inside by turning the key on the outside.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 06, 2014, 10:37:19 PM
Direct avail in J from FRA-TLV is available through a week before my flight. Hoping that by next week, my desired dates open up, and I can drop a stopover from my trip!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 07, 2014, 11:46:42 AM
Last night I dreamt I was in Barcelona without my wife, without having gotten a phone before the trip, and without having planned an itinerary. #nightmare
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SOS on May 07, 2014, 06:11:23 PM
without having gotten a phone before the trip,

On that matter what are you doing about phones during your trip?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 07, 2014, 07:05:14 PM
On that matter what are you doing about phones during your trip?
Been discussing that here http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=2051.400 and here http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=33621.100
In summary: looking at TMobile $50/month unlimited data and texts in every country I'll be in except GIB (which is mostly just a Shabbos). Calls are .20/min. Looking into Google Hangouts to make calls over data/wifi for free to American and .02/min to most European landlines and .10/min to most European cell phones.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: shimino1 on May 07, 2014, 07:53:15 PM
Been discussing that here http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=2051.400 and here http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=33621.100
In summary: looking at TMobile $50/month unlimited data and texts in every country I'll be in except GIB (which is mostly just a Shabbos). Calls are .20/min. Looking into Google Hangouts to make calls over data/wifi for free to American and .02/min to most European landlines and .10/min to most European cell phones.
Go Golan
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 07, 2014, 07:55:06 PM
Go Golan
That's only good for Israel correct?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: chucksterace on May 07, 2014, 07:58:56 PM

That's only good for Israel correct?

Yes
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on May 07, 2014, 08:00:48 PM
Don't get a phone disconnect from the world
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: CS1 on May 07, 2014, 08:04:25 PM
Don't get a phone disconnect from the world
+1

( I think that he'll need to somehow confirm the next city's destination, timing, flights, and hotel rooms....)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on May 07, 2014, 08:09:31 PM
( I think that he'll need to somehow confirm the next city's destination, timing, flights, and hotel rooms....)
Internet in the hotel?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Joe4007 on May 07, 2014, 08:11:11 PM
Don't get a phone disconnect from the world
Hey, we planned on getting a TR while he's traveling. Don't take that away from us... :)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: sky121 on May 07, 2014, 08:12:59 PM
Hey, we planned on getting a TR while he's traveling. Don't take that away from us... :)

Nah, I'm with Ergel. Writing down your own thoughts to remember later is great but disconnecting and just letting yourself really be and enjoy is the way to go!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 07, 2014, 08:28:12 PM
I made the nomadic suggestion to my wife. Her instant response was, "I've seen Taken."
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on May 07, 2014, 09:16:59 PM
I made the nomadic suggestion to my wife. Her instant response was, "I've seen Taken."
::)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 07, 2014, 10:53:19 PM
::)
I've seen it too. That only compounds the problem.

Although, I don't think we both need to pay for data, if companies even still sell plans w/o it.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 07, 2014, 11:24:00 PM
Also, just wanted to post here that I got the 2 car rentals I needed. I booked with SamKey from the forums who works with Chaikel. He was great to work with, put up with a million back and forth emails making changes as needed. Figured out the right way to get the cheapest price for the days I needed + a one-direction rental + underage (24) + automatic transmission.

For the Seville-Gibraltar Shabbos, I got a 3-day rental to take it on Friday and bring it back Sunday. He made the reservation for a pickup at Hertz's downtown office (about a 10 minute cab ride from my hotel) and the dropoff at the airport, which means we won't have to waste money for a cab to get to the airport Sunday morning. 3-day rental came out cheaper than a 2-day, so just hoping that when I return it a day early, they don't charge me any fees. Will obviously iy"h include that update in the TR.
Cost: $145

For the Italy excursion, I again have to thank Ergel for the idea to drive up Italy instead of training. We'll have so much more flexibility in our travels and will hopefully even get to visit the Tivoli Gardens - Villa de Este on the way out! FYI I approximately calculated the costs of trains for 2 pax Rome-Florence-Pisa-Venice + the cost of cabs to/from hotels and train stations and it really wasn't much cheaper than the rental. Should iy"h definitely be worth it for the car. This is also a 3 day rental, although we plan to use all 3 days.
Cost: $230

Total cost of the trip at this point per person: $1116.80
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 08, 2014, 08:12:06 AM
Btw you can book with them at Chaikel.com/rentalcar (http://www.Chaikel.com/rentalcar).
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 08, 2014, 01:39:28 PM
Also, just wanted to post here that I got the 2 car rentals I needed. I booked with SamKey from the forums who works with Chaikel. He was great to work with, put up with a million back and forth emails making changes as needed. Figured out the right way to get the cheapest price for the days I needed + a one-direction rental + underage (24) + automatic transmission.

For the Seville-Gibraltar Shabbos, I got a 3-day rental to take it on Friday and bring it back Sunday. He made the reservation for a pickup at Hertz's downtown office (about a 10 minute cab ride from my hotel) and the dropoff at the airport, which means we won't have to waste money for a cab to get to the airport Sunday morning. 3-day rental came out cheaper than a 2-day, so just hoping that when I return it a day early, they don't charge me any fees. Will obviously iy"h include that update in the TR.
Cost: $145

For the Italy excursion, I again have to thank Ergel for the idea to drive up Italy instead of training. We'll have so much more flexibility in our travels and will hopefully even get to visit the Tivoli Gardens - Villa de Este on the way out! FYI I approximately calculated the costs of trains for 2 pax Rome-Florence-Pisa-Venice + the cost of cabs to/from hotels and train stations and it really wasn't much cheaper than the rental. Should iy"h definitely be worth it for the car. This is also a 3 day rental, although we plan to use all 3 days.
Cost: $230

Total cost of the trip at this point per person: $1116.80
Is you cost PP only cash costs or also taking into account the value of points/miles used?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 08, 2014, 01:40:09 PM
Is you cost PP only cash costs or also taking into account the value of points/miles used?
Only cash. You can see how many miles I used in the wiki.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 08, 2014, 01:56:13 PM
Only cash. You can see how many miles I used in the wiki.
That's what I assumed.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 08, 2014, 02:21:42 PM
That's what I assumed.
Yep. 5 nights at PHP is $5000 alone. :)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: stbaum on May 08, 2014, 03:29:48 PM
Only cash. You can see how many miles I used in the wiki.
but if you pay with sp you should get bonus points for that as well, no?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 08, 2014, 03:32:39 PM
but if you pay with sp you should get bonus points for that as well, no?
I did pay with my SP for everything, so yes technically I got ~4000 points from these purchases.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 08, 2014, 04:32:32 PM
Just booked the train from Madrid-Toledo! 20.30 eur ($28.14) pax
I plan on doing Toledo w/o a tour guide, as he wanted 360 eur for transportation/tour, and I think visiting the 2 Shuls there will be nice (museum is closed on Mondays, which is when I plan to go), but doesn't warrant paying for a tour. Saving the $ for tours in Rome. :)
Read about the booking experience here: http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=850.msg809308#msg809308
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 13, 2014, 09:49:05 AM
Posts have been slow here recently, as I'm mostly up to just planning out my daily itineraries, which I'm doing in the individual cities' master threads.

Correction to previous post:
Toledo has 2 shuls with museums in them. 1 shul/museum is closed on Mondays, therefore only 1 shul/museum is open, but I still plan on going, as it looks beautiful from Google images.

Update on hotels:
Just used mine and my wife's Marriott free cat. 1-4 certs for AC Hotel Arezzo and AC Hotel Pisa. Arezzo seemed like a perfect place to stop for the night on the way from Rome-Florence. It's an hour out from Florence, which didn't have any Marriotts anyway. Would spend the next day in Florence and then head to Pisa for the night.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 13, 2014, 12:44:04 PM
What checking account do you plan on using while in Europe to take money out at ATMs to avoid foreign transaction fees? Schwab?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Emkay on May 13, 2014, 12:47:01 PM
What checking account do you plan on using while in Europe to take money out at ATMs to avoid foreign transaction fees? Schwab?
Schwab seems to be the best option but there is a hard pull to get one
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 13, 2014, 12:47:41 PM
Schwab seems to be the best option but there is a hard pull to get one
Not if you already have an investment account with them. CMIIW.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 13, 2014, 12:48:57 PM
What checking account do you plan on using while in Europe to take money out at ATMs to avoid foreign transaction fees? Schwab?
Was thinking about that over the weekend. I had originally thought I would just use SP everywhere, but I didn't think about places that would require cash. I heard TD doesn't charge forex fees either, but those are only 1/2 the fees. The ATM itself will have fees. I remember from my years in Israel that Discount bank didn't charge ATM fees. So with a TD bank and Discount, you could avoid fees altogether. I remember always looking for Discount banks, but I don't remember actually opening a TD acct, so I don't remember what I did. Either way, that wouldn't help for the rest of Europe ATM fees.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 13, 2014, 12:50:29 PM
Was thinking about that over the weekend. I had originally thought I would just use SP everywhere, but I didn't think about places that would require cash. I heard TD doesn't charge forex fees either, but those are only 1/2 the fees. The ATM itself will have fees. I remember from my years in Israel that Discount bank didn't charge ATM fees. So with a TD bank and Discount, you could avoid fees altogether. I remember always looking for Discount banks, but I don't remember actually opening a TD acct, so I don't remember what I did. Either way, that wouldn't help for the rest of Europe ATM fees.
Schwab doesn't charge ATM fees either, but if you don't have a brokerage account with them they may take a hard pull.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 13, 2014, 12:52:18 PM
Schwab doesn't charge ATM fees either, but if you don't have a brokerage account with them they may take a hard pull.
I meant ATM fees that come from the ATM you're standing infront of. Unless you're saying Schwab pays you back for the $1-2 the ATM takes.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 13, 2014, 12:52:52 PM
I meant ATM fees that come from the ATM you're standing infront of. Unless you're saying Schwab pays you back for the $1-2 the ATM takes.
They do.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 13, 2014, 12:58:36 PM
They do.
Wow that's really cool.

Now I remember what I did. My friend had a TD account. He used to give me cash from his account, and when we got back to America, I paid him back. Wow, just realized how nice that was of him. lol
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 13, 2014, 01:10:05 PM
Acc. to TPG (http://thepointsguy.com/2013/07/avoiding-atm-withdrawal-fees-when-traveling-abroad/) Schwab only works if you get the Visa Plat Debit Card. Not sure how to get that as opposed to the regular debit card. If you only have the regular debit, then you're limited to 6 transactions and $9 total fees per month. Citi has no fees at their own ATMs (obviously) and they apparently have a lot throughout Europe.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Emkay on May 13, 2014, 01:22:24 PM
depending how many times you plan on taking out money, usaa refunds up to $15 a month in atm fees and does not charge for the first 10 withdrawals
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 13, 2014, 01:24:02 PM
depending how many times you plan on taking out money, usaa refunds up to $15 a month in atm fees and does not charge for the first 10 withdrawals
But they do charge a 1% foreign transaction fee. Is it worth it to open a Schwab account (assuming no hard pull) when I already have a USAA account?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Emkay on May 13, 2014, 01:27:27 PM
But they do charge a 1% foreign transaction fee. Is it worth it to open a Schwab account (assuming no hard pull) when I already have a USAA account?
dont assume, it IS a hard pull. equifax to be precise
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 13, 2014, 01:38:12 PM
dont assume, it IS a hard pull. equifax to be precise
I thought the hard pull is just if they open the investment account along with the checking account. If you have an existing account you cannot apply online, you have to mail/bring in a hard copy of the application. I'll try to find out.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Emkay on May 13, 2014, 01:46:56 PM
If you have an existing account you cannot apply online, you have to mail/bring in a hard copy of the application. I'll try to find out.
i didnt realize you have an acount
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 13, 2014, 01:48:37 PM
i didnt realize you have an acount
So if it worth the hassle just to save 1%? I can't imagine taking out more than 500 EUR, so it's just $6-7 fee.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Emkay on May 13, 2014, 01:50:46 PM
So if it worth the hassle just to save 1%? I can't imagine taking out more than 500 EUR, so it's just $6-7 fee.
how many withdrawels do you plan on making, if you are traveling around alot and taking out at diff intervals then the 15 that they cover will add up very quickly
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 13, 2014, 01:52:41 PM
how many withdrawels do you plan on making, if you are traveling around alot and taking out at diff intervals then the 15 that they cover will add up very quickly
True. The only things I plan on paying cash for is the Jewish Roma tour and maybe tickets to different sights like the Great Synagogue/Vatican/Colosseum, etc if they don't accept cc.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Emkay on May 13, 2014, 01:54:54 PM
True. The only things I plan on paying cash for is the Jewish Roma tour and maybe tickets to different sights like the Great Synagogue/Vatican/Colosseum, etc if they don't accept cc.
if your only gonna be in italy then its prob not worth the hassle
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 13, 2014, 01:56:32 PM
if your only gonna be in italy then its prob not worth the hassle
Italy and Switzerland, but I get the impression that they accept credit cards a lot more there than in Italy, but I could be wrong. Last time I was in Switzerland was over 10 years ago.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 13, 2014, 01:58:09 PM
dont assume, it IS a hard pull. equifax to be precise
I stand corrected: There goes that idea.

Dear Yehoshua,
 
In response to your previous e-mail, Charles Schwab & Co. Inc. does run a "hard pull" on any and all Charles Schwab Bank accounts that are requested to be established whether you have an existing relationship with Charles Schwab & Co. Inc. or not. If you have further questions regarding this process you can reach out directly to Charles Schwab Bank at 800-421-4488.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on May 13, 2014, 03:06:07 PM
Just to clarify, there are 3 fees. 1. The currency exchange fee 2. the ATM fee 3. the fee that the guy who runs the ATM charges (which was about 5 nis when I was in Israel) Do they reimburse for the third fee as well?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 13, 2014, 03:08:12 PM
Just to clarify, there are 3 fees. 1. The currency exchange fee 2. the ATM fee 3. the fee that the guy who runs the ATM charges (which was about 5 nis when I was in Israel) Do they reimburse for the third fee as well?
USAA and Schwab will reimb the third fee as well.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ad120 on May 13, 2014, 03:09:13 PM
FYI: Chase doesn't have pin numbers for smart chips. So when using automated machines it may come to be an issue.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 13, 2014, 03:11:36 PM
FYI: Chase doesn't have pin numbers for smart chips. So when using automated machines it may come to be an issue.
...Yet. Rumors are they're changing to Chip & PIN. As it stands now, you're correct. You'd have to use another non-automated option where they can let you sign.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ad120 on May 13, 2014, 03:13:33 PM
True. The only things I plan on paying cash for is the Jewish Roma tour and maybe tickets to different sights like the Great Synagogue/Vatican/Colosseum, etc if they don't accept cc.
http://www.romefreewalkingtour.com/?gclid=CK7XmIbNqb4CFWVp7AodnAgAGQ
I did the tour with them. Was pretty good and cost close to nothing. They don't take you into the Colosseum etc. But you can go without them afterwards. As per the synogouge, go for mincha/maariv services and you must bring your passport to get in!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 13, 2014, 03:19:15 PM
http://www.romefreewalkingtour.com/?gclid=CK7XmIbNqb4CFWVp7AodnAgAGQ
I did the tour with them. Was pretty good and cost close to nothing. They don't take you into the Colosseum etc. But you can go without them afterwards. As per the synogouge, go for mincha/maariv services and you must bring your passport to get in!
I was thinking of this one: http://www.newromefreetour.com/

While you can get in the shul for mincha/maariv, you can't get a tour then.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on May 13, 2014, 03:21:15 PM
USAA and Schwab will reimb the third fee as well.
But how do they know how much the fee is? With TD it comes up as 1 transaction.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 13, 2014, 03:23:28 PM
But how do they know how much the fee is? With TD it comes up as 1 transaction.
They don't know how much it is until it shows up on the statement. Then they refund you.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on May 13, 2014, 03:24:36 PM
They don't know how much it is until it shows up on the statement. Then they refund you.
On my statement it never shows up as a separate charge.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 13, 2014, 03:26:36 PM
On my statement it never shows up as a separate charge.
USAA or Schwab?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on May 13, 2014, 03:34:50 PM
USAA or Schwab?
TD. with Schwab it will show up as a separate charge?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 13, 2014, 03:41:00 PM
TD. with Schwab it will show up as a separate charge?
IDK. I don't have Schwab. I was thinking of opening an account till I confirmed it's a hard pull.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on May 13, 2014, 03:48:54 PM
With fidelity it shows up as one charge and they still refund it
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on May 13, 2014, 04:07:22 PM
With fidelity it shows up as one charge and they still refund it
How do they know how much the fee/charge was?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on May 13, 2014, 04:11:32 PM
How do they know how much the fee/charge was?
Dunno. I assume that info gets passed along to them, they just don't display it.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Emkay on May 13, 2014, 04:17:41 PM
How do they know how much the fee/charge was?
Does it matter?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on May 13, 2014, 04:22:01 PM
Does it matter?
No. I just wanna make sure that they reimburse EVERYTHING.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on May 13, 2014, 04:22:53 PM
No. I just wanna make sure that they reimburse EVERYTHING.
They do
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 14, 2014, 09:50:33 PM
Not sure if TD does a hard pull, but it seems like their Premier account reimburses for ATM fees (possibly unlimited?)

(http://s11.postimg.org/a91wpejeb/Capture.png)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Emkay on May 14, 2014, 10:01:26 PM
Not sure if TD does a hard pull, but it seems like their Premier account reimburses for ATM fees (possibly unlimited?)

(http://s11.postimg.org/a91wpejeb/Capture.png)
quite possibly only in u.s
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 14, 2014, 10:01:59 PM
quite possibly only in u.s
Gna give them a call when I have a chance.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SOS on May 14, 2014, 10:55:31 PM
My brother uses a td account with a minimum balance ( not sure how much and not sure if it's the premier account) which he uses in Israel without any fees
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 14, 2014, 10:58:50 PM
Yeah, I just called them. They said literally everything we would want:
$2500 min balance means no monthly fees.
No ATM fee from TD.
No FOREX fee.
ATM fees from the ATM itself are refunded - no maximum amount of withdrawals and no max amount of fees - it'll all be refunded!
No credit check to open an account.
Max daily withdrawal is like $760, but can be upped to $1000 by calling in or SMing.

Pretty awesome if the rep is right.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on May 15, 2014, 12:16:29 AM
Yeah, I just called them. They said literally everything we would want:
$2500 min balance means no monthly fees.
No ATM fee from TD.
No FOREX fee.
ATM fees from the ATM itself are refunded - no maximum amount of withdrawals and no max amount of fees - it'll all be refunded!
No credit check to open an account.
Max daily withdrawal is like $760, but can be upped to $1000 by calling in or SMing.

Pretty awesome if the rep is right.
I use TD all the time. The ATM mshine showes up a message before taking out the money that it will be a fee of 5 nis. This 5 nis DOES NOT show up on the statement. And I never got reimbursed for it. That's why I was wondering what the story is with USAA or Schwab
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 15, 2014, 12:26:25 AM
I use TD all the time. The ATM mshine showes up a message before taking out the money that it will be a fee of 5 nis. This 5 nis DOES NOT show up on the statement. And I never got reimbursed for it. That's why I was wondering what the story is with USAA or Schwab
If it didn't show up on the statement, then does that mean you were never really charged?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on May 15, 2014, 12:36:44 AM
If it didn't show up on the statement, then does that mean you were never really charged?
They did charge me. Say I wanna take out 1000 nis, the ATM gives me a message if I accept that I will be charged a fee of 6 nis, so the total is now 1006 nis. How in the world would TD know how to split up the charge. If any Bank does please let me know. If USAA and Schwab are just doing the same what TD does, you will not be reimbursed everything.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 15, 2014, 12:39:41 AM
They did charge me. Say I wanna take out 1000 nis, the ATM gives me a message if I accept that I will be charged a fee of 6 nis, so the total is now 1006 nis. How in the world would TD know how to split up the charge. If any Bank does please let me know. If USAA and Schwab are just doing the same what TD does, you will not be reimbursed everything.
Gotcha. So then if that's the case, there would be no way to get completely free ATMs unless you find ones that don't charge ATM fees, like Discount bank in Israel.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on May 15, 2014, 12:42:51 AM
Gotcha. So then if that's the case, there would be no way to get completely free ATMs unless you find ones that don't charge ATM fees, like Discount bank in Israel.
Probably...
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SamKey on May 15, 2014, 06:01:49 AM
Or you call them up and complain  :o :o
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on May 15, 2014, 09:13:07 AM
With fidelity it shows up as one charge and they still refund it


How do they know how much the fee/charge was?


Dunno. I assume that info gets passed along to them, they just don't display it.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 15, 2014, 02:02:57 PM
Just added some money to Vonage to try it out while also finding out if 2 of my Shabbos hotels have manual lobby doors.
Calling a landline in London was 1.4cpm while GV wants 2cpm. Called the Marriott Marble Arch (where I want to stay once I get all my Marriott points) and they have regular doors and a revolving door, but not electric doors, so yay!
Calling a landline in Venice was 2.2cpm. GV was only 2cpm but I had just added the minimum $4.99 to Vonage and GV's minimum is $10, so I figured I'll just use Vonage still as my tester. Rep at Comfort Hotel Diana (which ey corrected me twice as "Hotel Diana" even though Choice calls it a Comfort Hotel) didn't speak English well but gave me someone else who responded to my question, "Are you a Jew? On Fridays, we'll gladly open the door for you." I hope he doesn't mind opening the door for me on Shabbos either. :)
Total cost, 10 cents.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 15, 2014, 02:08:51 PM
Rep at Comfort Hotel Diana (which ey corrected me twice as "Hotel Diana" even though Choice calls it a Comfort Hotel)
Same deal at the Westin Excelsior Rome. It's called the Hotel Excelsior, it just happens to be a Westin, but they don't advertise that fact.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 16, 2014, 12:11:22 PM
Just booked the Eliott in GIB. Ended up deciding that I wanted to go with spending as little cash as possible for accommodations, so I cancelled my paid stay ($15 fee) and booked it with 14K UR. Yes, I know 14K UR is more valuable than the cost would have been for paying for the hotel, but as explained above, I want to save my cash for this trip for things that can't be paid with points like taxis and attractions.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 16, 2014, 12:56:46 PM
And just booked Comfort Hotel Diana for 4 nights at 10K a night. 40K MR transferred to Choice. Was a good thing I reserved this one with cash b/c the room selection I wanted was not available today. Rep was able to change the payment method from cash to points by quickly releasing the rooms and then rebooking them, but had I not reserved the room, it may not have been available today (MR points just posted today).
Don't recall if I mentioned this upthread, but I chose this hotel b/c I wanted to use points and not cash (as with all my hotels) and even though it may not be a luxury hotel, it required MUCH less points than the SPG options and is just about as far from Chabad and the Kosher restaurants as the SPG places.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: whacked1 on May 16, 2014, 03:16:20 PM
@yehuda cant wait for you to update the wiki with your dates.... ps my wife wants to know what you're gonna do about laundry????  ;D
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 16, 2014, 03:30:50 PM
@yehuda cant wait for you to update the wiki with your dates.... ps my wife wants to know what you're gonna do about laundry????  ;D

Hah, not sure I'm going to post exact dates just yet.

We plan on bringing just a carryon and backpack each with 7 days worth of clothing, so laundry once a week. Some hotels have washing machines, for those that don't, I'm sure we can find laundromats.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SOS on May 16, 2014, 03:38:55 PM
And just booked Comfort Hotel Diana for 4 nights at 10K a night. 40K MR transferred to Choice. Was a good thing I reserved this one with cash b/c the room selection I wanted was not available today. Rep was able to change the payment method from cash to points by quickly releasing the rooms and then rebooking them, but had I not reserved the room, it may not have been available today (MR points just posted today).
Don't recall if I mentioned this upthread, but I chose this hotel b/c I wanted to use points and not cash (as with all my hotels) and even though it may not be a luxury hotel, it required MUCH less points than the SPG options and is just about as far from Chabad and the Kosher restaurants as the SPG places.

I am assuming that the Marriott mentioned upthread was also too much points?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 16, 2014, 03:41:28 PM
Hah, not sure I'm going to post exact dates just yet.

We plan on bringing just a carryon and backpack each with 7 days worth of clothing, so laundry once a week. Some hotels have washing machines, for those that don't, I'm sure we can find laundromats.
You'll be able to get 1 week's worth of clothing in just a carry on and backpack? How much of your carry on will be filled with your wife's stuff? I find it a lot easier to pack carry on only when I don't need to pack shabbos clothes.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 16, 2014, 03:53:26 PM
I am assuming that the Marriott mentioned upthread was also too much points?
Not sure which you're referring to. IINM there's no Marriott actually in Venice. If you ever plan a trip there, you'll find plenty of cheap options in "Venice" but from my research, those are all not on the actual island and would require taxis/water taxis just to get to Venice island.
You'll be able to get 1 week's worth of clothing in just a carry on and backpack? How much of your carry on will be filled with your wife's stuff? I find it a lot easier to pack carry on only when I don't need to pack shabbos clothes.
1 carryon each. I have this (http://www.overstock.com/Luggage-Bags/Travelers-Choice-Siena-21-inch-Hybrid-Garment-Bag-Carry-On-Upright-Suitcase/4313510/product.html?refccid=O4GHPBQTBFL2UIKFQCLKWQYOKE&searchidx=1) one, which has a pretty sweet suit situation. By 1 week's worth of clothing, I was referring to undergarments. In term of real clothes, we plan to each bring 2-3 weekday outfits and 2-3 shabbos outfits (for her, for me 1 suit/shirt should be fine. Just give me my selection of ties :) ). Should be okay.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 16, 2014, 03:59:21 PM
Not sure which you're referring to. IINM there's no Marriott actually in Venice. If you ever plan a trip there, you'll find plenty of cheap options in "Venice" but from my research, those are all not on the actual island and would require taxis/water taxis just to get to Venice island.1 carryon each. I have this (http://www.overstock.com/Luggage-Bags/Travelers-Choice-Siena-21-inch-Hybrid-Garment-Bag-Carry-On-Upright-Suitcase/4313510/product.html?refccid=O4GHPBQTBFL2UIKFQCLKWQYOKE&searchidx=1) one, which has a pretty sweet suit situation. By 1 week's worth of clothing, I was referring to undergarments. In term of real clothes, we plan to each bring 2-3 weekday outfits and 2-3 shabbos outfits (for her, for me 1 suit/shirt should be fine. Just give me my selection of ties :) ). Should be okay.
I understood you meant each, but even still.  I know there are benefits of travelling without checked luggage, especially for your type of trip.  Lugging around big suitcases through Rome, Venice, and Zurich is not an exciting thought, but I couldn't convince my wife not to check a bag. When we went on our 3 week honeymoon we didn't do laundry, just brought enough clothing in checked luggage.

Generally we travel with 1 checked bag and one backpack each, as some foreign carriers have super strict carry on weight limits. At least you don't have any of those.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 16, 2014, 04:13:59 PM
I understood you meant each, but even still.  I know there are benefits of travelling without checked luggage, especially for your type of trip.  Lugging around big suitcases through Rome, Venice, and Zurich is not an exciting thought, but I couldn't convince my wife not to check a bag. When we went on our 3 week honeymoon we didn't do laundry, just brought enough clothing in checked luggage.

Generally we travel with 1 checked bag and one backpack each, as some foreign carriers have super strict carry on weight limits. At least you don't have any of those.
Nothing against you're wife, but Mrs. @Yehuda happens to be the chillest person ever. :)
Looked into EasyJet and those restrictions (and potential crazy fees) were the main reason I chose not to fly with them to Nice and instead go to ZRH with LX, should hopefully be a bit easier with us.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 16, 2014, 04:30:45 PM
Nothing against you're wife, but Mrs. @Yehuda happens to be the chillest person ever. :)
Looked into EasyJet and those restrictions (and potential crazy fees) were the main reason I chose not to fly with them to Nice and instead go to ZRH with LX, should hopefully be a bit easier with us.
No offence taken. I might be able to convince Mrs. Yehoshua to go without a checked bag, but I'm just going to suck it up and carry it for her. My hope is to only check one bag total this time. Also, because we're also not flying any low cost carriers this trip (unlike our last 2 trips) we'll be able to bring a normal carry on as well.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SOS on May 16, 2014, 04:35:37 PM
http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=3.msg793567.msg#793567
The Marriott was mentioned in the Venice thread, but was directed to you
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SOS on May 16, 2014, 04:37:52 PM
It seemed from that thread that it's a good option, where do you see that it's a different island?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Feivish on May 16, 2014, 04:43:32 PM
What are your Paris dates?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 16, 2014, 04:51:19 PM
No offence taken. I might be able to convince Mrs. Yehoshua to go without a checked bag, but I'm just going to suck it up and carry it for her. My hope is to only check one bag total this time. Also, because we're also not flying any low cost carriers this trip (unlike our last 2 trips) we'll be able to bring a normal carry on as well.
Make sure everything besides backpacks roll!
http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=3.msg793567.msg#793567
The Marriott was mentioned in the Venice thread, but was directed to you
Ah, my bad. Just looked it up. It's booked for my nights, so the only hotels that showed up on Marriott.com were the AC hotels that aren't on the actual island of Venice. That's why I didn't see it. Too bad. Could have stayed there (seems so close to Chabad) and then used my IHG to stay in London instead of using my Marriott there.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 16, 2014, 04:55:24 PM
Make sure everything besides backpacks roll!
Do they even make suitcases that don't roll anymore?  :P
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 16, 2014, 04:58:34 PM
Do they even make suitcases that don't roll anymore?  :P
http://www.amazon.com/Mercury-Seward-Footlocker-Purple-College/dp/B007WCN1VE/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1400273878&sr=8-2&keywords=trunk  ;D
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: CS1 on May 18, 2014, 01:16:16 AM
http://www.amazon.com/Mercury-Seward-Footlocker-Purple-College/dp/B007WCN1VE/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1400273878&sr=8-2&keywords=trunk  ;D
That one weighs 18 pounds which means that you only have 32 pounds of items that can be placed into it. Isn't that the point of buying the non-rolling suitcase?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: how on May 18, 2014, 03:57:36 AM
They did charge me. Say I wanna take out 1000 nis, the ATM gives me a message if I accept that I will be charged a fee of 6 nis, so the total is now 1006 nis. How in the world would TD know how to split up the charge. If any Bank does please let me know. If USAA and Schwab are just doing the same what TD does, you will not be reimbursed everything.
AFAIK the 5 nis charge is not separated by the atm on those machines so CS TD will also not refund the 5 nis because they dont know about it. You need to use a ATM attached to a real bank to get the fee back
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 18, 2014, 08:13:50 AM
That one weighs 18 pounds which means that you only have 32 pounds of items that can be placed into it. Isn't that the point of buying the non-rolling suitcase?
Was a joke :)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: CS1 on May 18, 2014, 09:54:13 AM
Was a joke :)
Got it   :D

if you've seen a lightweight rolling with ex-large capacity, would like a recommendation... thnks!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 18, 2014, 09:52:37 PM
Update on the cell phone situation (and this should help Yehoshua and Emkay for their trips as well)...
Using Vonage for calls + getting $5 free from the AMEX iTunes offer (http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=40071):
http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=2051.msg817619#msg817619
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 18, 2014, 09:55:43 PM
Update on the cell phone situation (and this should help Yehoshua and Emkay for their trips as well)...
Using Vonage for calls + getting $5 free from the AMEX iTunes offer (http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=40071):
http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=2051.msg817619#msg817619
Nice deal. Thanks for mentioning it.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 19, 2014, 04:47:38 PM
Are you planning on applying for/getting a replacement card for the new Barclay Arrival+ card so you can use Chip+PIN while on your trip?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 19, 2014, 04:50:26 PM
Are you planning on applying for/getting a replacement card for the new Barclay Arrival+ card so you can use Chip+PIN while on your trip?
Nah. Would much rather use SP. Hopefully that will work for most places. People have been using CCs abroad without even a chip until they started making chips in US cards. I don't see why it should be a problem.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 19, 2014, 05:01:16 PM
Nah. Would much rather use SP. Hopefully that will work for most places. People have been using CCs abroad without even a chip until they started making chips in US cards. I don't see why it should be a problem.
I'm just thinking about gas stations that don't accept any other cards. I'd hate to be late to the airport because I had trouble at the pump.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 19, 2014, 05:05:01 PM
I'm just thinking about gas stations that don't accept any other cards. I'd hate to be late to the airport because I had trouble at the pump.
Cash?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 19, 2014, 05:07:40 PM
Cash?
I'm not such a fan. If I have to (like with a tour) I will, but I'd rather CC obviously. Maybe they have little kiosks you can go into an pay without a PIN.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 19, 2014, 06:55:47 PM
I'm not such a fan. If I have to (like with a tour) I will, but I'd rather CC obviously. Maybe they have little kiosks you can go into an pay without a PIN.
I hear you. But you may just have to when traveling. Just carry some cash with you in case.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 19, 2014, 06:57:01 PM
I hear you. But you may just have to when traveling. Just carry some cash with you in case.
True, plus I probably wouldn't even get accepted for the card as I just applied (and got) the US Air card 3 weeks ago.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 21, 2014, 05:50:46 PM
@Yehuda, are you getting an international drivers license/permit for your car rentals in Spain and Italy or are you going to hope you don't get pulled over?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 21, 2014, 06:01:45 PM
@Yehuda, are you getting an international drivers license/permit for your car rentals in Spain and Italy or are you going to hope you don't get pulled over?
Never thought about it. Hoping I don't get pulled over...
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Emkay on May 21, 2014, 06:05:28 PM
Never thought about it. Hoping I don't get pulled over...
or just spend $15 and get one
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 21, 2014, 06:11:27 PM
or just spend $15 and get one
That's what I was thinking. AAA offices are not too hard to come by.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Joe4007 on May 21, 2014, 06:34:38 PM
@Yehuda, are you getting an international drivers license/permit for your car rentals in Spain and Italy or are you going to hope you don't get pulled over?
What's the deal with that? Is it needed for driving in any foreign country?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 21, 2014, 06:46:33 PM
What's the deal with that? Is it needed for driving in any foreign country?
From what I understand it's required by the Police (I don't know how enforced it is), but the car rental agencies don't all require it.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Joe4007 on May 21, 2014, 06:48:32 PM
From what I understand it's required by the Police (I don't know how enforced it is), but the car rental agencies don't all require it.
Is that also the case in Israel?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 21, 2014, 06:52:56 PM
Is that also the case in Israel?
I don't believe so, but I didn't have one (or get pulled over) when I've rented in Israel.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Emkay on May 21, 2014, 06:54:59 PM
Is that also the case in Israel?
I Got pulled over and they didnt ask for it
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 21, 2014, 09:45:57 PM
Oh, wow didn't realize that. Can you get it from AAA online? Do you need to be an AAA member?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 21, 2014, 09:56:13 PM
Oh, wow didn't realize that. Can you get it from AAA online? Do you need to be an AAA member?
You need to fill out a form and mail it with 2 passport photos or go into a AAA branch. You don't need to be a member.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 21, 2014, 10:00:11 PM
You need to fill out a form and mail it with 2 passport photos or go into a AAA branch. You don't need to be a member.
You've done your research! 1 license works for all of Europe? Think they'll take passport photos there?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 21, 2014, 10:06:26 PM
You've done your research! 1 license works for all of Europe? Think they'll take passport photos there?
Pretty much every country, for sure in Western Europe. They will take passport photos there, but Rite Aid is cheaper at $8.99. They even have a $1 off coupon on their website.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 21, 2014, 10:16:50 PM
Pretty much every country, for sure in Western Europe. They will take passport photos there, but Rite Aid is cheaper at $8.99. They even have a $1 off coupon on their website.
lol you're really on top of your game with this. Now it's $15+7.99 ;)
Q is how necessary is it? If you get pulled over and show your US license, what will they do? Put you in prison? Fine you?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: sky121 on May 21, 2014, 10:19:16 PM
Who said you NEED an international license?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 21, 2014, 10:37:17 PM
lol you're really on top of your game with this. Now it's $15+7.99 ;)
Q is how necessary is it? If you get pulled over and show your US license, what will they do? Put you in prison? Fine you?
I guess it depends on the officer. He might not read English and won't be able to tell if your license is valid.

Who said you NEED an international license?
I believe it said that on the Hertz website, but I can look for a more official source. I do remember seeing it elsewhere.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 21, 2014, 10:48:14 PM
From my research now, it seems like Italy and Spain are the only 2 countries on my itinerary that require it. Of course, those are the 2 where I plan to rent a car. Seems like it's not a guarantee that an officer will ask for it, as the main purpose of it is just to translate your license into other languages, and if they can speak English perhaps they won't ask for it. Seems like the worst they will do is fine you.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 21, 2014, 10:51:48 PM
From my research now, it seems like Italy and Spain are the only 2 countries on my itinerary that require it. Of course, those are the 2 where I plan to rent a car. Seems like it's not a guarantee that an officer will ask for it, as the main purpose of it is just to translate your license into other languages, and if they can speak English perhaps they won't ask for it. Seems like the worst they will do is fine you.
But for $23 it might be worth it, especially if you print your own passport photos at home. There are websites that will help you get the size right.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 21, 2014, 11:03:40 PM
But for $23 it might be worth it, especially if you print your own passport photos at home. There are websites that will help you get the size right.
Yea, I hear you. It's been written on the "to-do" list. Really need to get on planning this itinerary. Taking much longer than expected. (Kinda like each stage of this journey.)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 21, 2014, 11:11:24 PM
Yea, I hear you. It's been written on the "to-do" list. Really need to get on planning this itinerary. Taking much longer than expected. (Kinda like each stage of this journey.)
What percentage done are you?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 21, 2014, 11:32:15 PM
What percentage done are you?
I really only have Spain (1 week) planned in detail. The rest I have random tidbits planned, but still need to do more. Just having a busy week otherwise so I haven't had much time to plan.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 21, 2014, 11:48:14 PM
I really only have Spain (1 week) planned in detail. The rest I have random tidbits planned, but still need to do more. Just having a busy week otherwise so I haven't had much time to plan.
How in detail do you get?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 22, 2014, 12:17:44 PM
How in detail do you get?
Probably too in detail. For some days I have like 8am wake up 9am shacharis at so-so shul 10am taxi to ____. Etc.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 22, 2014, 12:32:56 PM
Probably too in detail. For some days I have like 8am wake up 9am shacharis at so-so shul 10am taxi to ____. Etc.
That's exactly how I'd like to plan a trip. IMO, the problem is that on vacation it's important to have some leeway time to account for unexpected finds. I have learned to scale back the exact detail planning and go with something a bit more relaxed, yet still structured. For example:

Day 1
Wakeup/Daven/Breakfast, finish by 9:00am
9:15a- take cab to JR tour
10:00a- JR tour
1:30p- Lunch in the Ghetto (Baghetto Milkey)
3:00p- Walk to Vatican/San Peter's square/explore Rome
7:00p- Dinner in Ghetto (Yatvata)
Be in bed by 11:00p

Day 2
Wakeup/Daven/Breakfast, finish by 7:30am
7:45a- take cab to Walks of Italy tour at Colosseum
8:30a- WoI tour
12:00p- Walk around some more
1:30p- Lunch
3:00p- Pack up and get ready to go

By having some "unscheduled time" in the itinerary it will be a lot less stressful.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on May 22, 2014, 01:08:45 PM
Driven in 4 countries in Europe and never got an international license
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 22, 2014, 01:11:59 PM
Driven in 4 countries in Europe and never got an international license
Did you ever get pulled over?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Emkay on May 22, 2014, 01:13:15 PM
Driven in 4 countries in Europe and never got an international license
pulled over in how many?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on May 22, 2014, 01:14:42 PM
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Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 22, 2014, 01:15:33 PM
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So I guess you don't know what would happen if you do.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SOS on May 22, 2014, 01:19:49 PM
You can always just be the American tourist who didn't know he was supposed to have a intl drivers license, and just apologize etc
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 22, 2014, 01:46:41 PM
You can always just be the American tourist who didn't know he was supposed to have a intl drivers license, and just apologize etc
...and hope the cop buys it.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 23, 2014, 11:05:03 AM
Just opened TD Premier Checking acct. No ATM fees from TD, no Forex fees, and they refund fees from the ATM without any limit to withdrawals or fee dollars per month. Must keep min. $2500 daily in the account to avoid the monthly maintenance fee.
Banker did not know what would happen if the ATM includes their fee in the withdrawal amount, but I'll always ask for a receipt and hopefully it'll be somewhat broken down on there, and I can discuss it with TD when I get back or perhaps can explain that it doesn't make sense how I took out 103 euro and that the last 3 were really a fee.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on May 23, 2014, 11:23:50 AM
Just opened TD Premier Checking acct. No ATM fees from TD, no Forex fees, and they refund fees from the ATM without any limit to withdrawals or fee dollars per month. Must keep min. $2500 daily in the account to avoid the monthly maintenance fee.
Banker did not know what would happen if the ATM includes their fee in the withdrawal amount, but I'll always ask for a receipt and hopefully it'll be somewhat broken down on there, and I can discuss it with TD when I get back or perhaps can explain that it doesn't make sense how I took out 103 euro and that the last 3 were really a fee.
Why are you guys so fahitzed about this. They know what the fee is. They will refund you the fee.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 23, 2014, 11:46:07 AM
Why are you guys so fahitzed about this. They know what the fee is. They will refund you the fee.
Well, I decided already. :)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 23, 2014, 02:18:08 PM
Just got my int'l driver's permit. Was near an AAA and figured might as well be safe. $27 including pics and was really efficient. Maybe 15 minutes in total.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 23, 2014, 02:24:37 PM
Just got my int'l driver's permit. Was near an AAA and figured might as well be safe. $27 including pics and was really efficient. Maybe 15 minutes in total.
Nice, but $12 for pictures is a lot.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on May 23, 2014, 02:38:59 PM
And running to Walgreens to save $4 to go back to AAA is silly
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 23, 2014, 02:41:25 PM
And running to Walgreens to save $4 to go back to AAA is silly
True.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 23, 2014, 03:29:05 PM
And running to Walgreens to save $4 to go back to AAA is silly
Precisely :)
It's also cheaper if you're an AAA member btw.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 25, 2014, 09:22:00 AM
Found these at my mother's house from my Israel Yeshiva days. If everything I plan to bring w/ a plug says 100-240V, then I should need the big converter right, just the little white guy?
(http://i.imgur.com/anFWKUh.jpg?1)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: chucksterace on May 25, 2014, 09:23:11 AM
Correct. 100-240 just needs the little plug.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 25, 2014, 09:29:34 AM
Correct. 100-240 just needs the little plug.
Just read that these don't work in Italy, Switzerland or the UK. Is that true?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: sillypainter on May 25, 2014, 09:39:11 AM
Just read that these don't work in Italy, Switzerland or the UK. Is that true?

It works all over Europe except UK. Unless there is another part on it. UK has like big square prongs.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Emkay on May 25, 2014, 09:39:43 AM
Just read that these don't work in Italy, Switzerland or the UK. Is that true?
I have been to italy 4 times, never used anything but them
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 25, 2014, 09:44:44 AM
Thanks, I'll make sure to get a UK one as well.

Any idea about Swiss? From Google images, it looks like 3 prongs of the European shape, but perhaps the 3rd is just for grounding and it will still work with just a 2 prong one?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: sky121 on May 25, 2014, 09:45:52 AM
Thanks, I'll make sure to get a UK one as well.

Any idea about Swiss? From Google images, it looks like 3 prongs of the European shape, but perhaps the 3rd is just for grounding and it will still work with just a 2 prong one?
2 prong should work just fine.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 25, 2014, 09:46:48 AM
2 prong should work just fine.
Thanks!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SamKey on May 25, 2014, 09:51:58 AM
Just read that these don't work in Italy, Switzerland or the UK. Is that true?
also Gib
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 25, 2014, 09:53:11 AM
also Gib
Right I realized GIB based on UK. Thanks, ordering a UK one now.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SOS on May 25, 2014, 10:26:27 AM
You can always use a car charger
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 25, 2014, 10:28:26 AM
You can always use a car charger
I'll only have rental cars in GIB and Italy. Either way, I just bought one for a couple of bucks.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 25, 2014, 12:17:58 PM
And an update to the cell phone situation:
http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=41626.msg820070#msg820070
and read 2 posts below that.
Kinda got lucky :)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 25, 2014, 12:57:25 PM
And an update to the cell phone situation:
http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=41626.msg820070#msg820070
and read 2 posts below that.
Kinda got lucky :)
Lucky you. I don't have  an iPhone so I can't purchase credit from iTunes.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 26, 2014, 10:10:42 AM
Wow. I ordered the UK adaptor at 10AM yesterday (a Sunday) and it just came 10AM today (a Holiday).
#AmazonPrime4lifeeeeee
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: sky121 on May 26, 2014, 10:18:17 AM
Wow. I ordered the UK adaptor at 10AM yesterday (a Sunday) and it just came 10AM today (a Holiday).
#AmazonPrime4lifeeeeee
It came today? Cool. Who delivered?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 26, 2014, 11:15:50 AM
It came today? Cool. Who delivered?
Didn't check till just now - USPS Sunday Delivery. First time I'm actually happy that Amazon sent via USPS.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Joe4007 on May 26, 2014, 12:18:37 PM
First time I'm actually happy that Amazon sent via USPS.
;D
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: EJB on May 26, 2014, 11:50:05 PM
Didn't check till just now - USPS Sunday Delivery. First time I'm actually happy that Amazon sent via USPS.

+1
Also got USPS deliveries from amazon yesterday and today. But last week had a package "unsafe to leave outside door" (soap or something like that) returned to the post office after 1 attempt. That was annoying.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 27, 2014, 12:05:19 AM
+1
Also got USPS deliveries from amazon yesterday and today. But last week had a package "unsafe to leave outside door" (soap or something like that) returned to the post office after 1 attempt. That was annoying.
For a while the USPS delivery guy was definitely not even attempting to ring my bell. I was home all day and he didn't ring, just left the slip in my mailbox. I don't get why in the world he wouldn't at least ring the bell. I ended up getting my local USPS coordinator's (or something like that) direct number and had her twice find my packages and get them redelivered. She said it happens often enough and she can't figure out why the drivers don't even attempt to ring the bells. Maybe they don't even bring the package off the truck. They know if they leave you a slip, they don't have to come back for a redelivery unless you request it, as opposed to UPS who comes back automatically. I mean even laziness isn't the right word for that.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: ilherman on May 27, 2014, 12:54:26 AM
For a while the USPS delivery guy was definitely not even attempting to ring my bell. I was home all day and he didn't ring, just left the slip in my mailbox. I don't get why in the world he wouldn't at least ring the bell. I ended up getting my local USPS coordinator's (or something like that) direct number and had her twice find my packages and get them redelivered. She said it happens often enough and she can't figure out why the drivers don't even attempt to ring the bells. Maybe they don't even bring the package off the truck. They know if they leave you a slip, they don't have to come back for a redelivery unless you request it, as opposed to UPS who comes back automatically. I mean even laziness isn't the right word for that.
Welcome to USPS!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SOS on May 27, 2014, 03:54:42 PM
Right. So I have to calculate what'll be more expensive. Paying for the B&B and paying for cabs into town, or staying at the hotel for free, but paying for cabs to the Shul.

i thought you were trying to do all hotels on points (even using 14k ur in gib just for bragging rights) it should be a easy decision to use points :D

on a different note i am waiting to see what you'll uncover in the venice thread
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 27, 2014, 04:12:17 PM
i thought you were trying to do all hotels on points (even using 14k ur in gib just for bragging rights) it should be a easy decision to use points :D

on a different note i am waiting to see what you'll uncover in the venice thread
Yeah, so that's pushing me :) but if the GIB situation meant a technical loss of about $50. Here, if I want to go to Shul for Mincha/Maariv, Shacharis, and Mincha/Maariv, I'll be paying $70 in taxis per trip. That's a much larger loss. At the same time, though, if I stay by a B&B at the Shul, I have to estimate about $70 x 2 nights, plus the taxis to downtown - assuming downtown is where the attractions are. So far, from what I've gotten from the Ireland thread, the attractions are hours away from downtown, so I'm kinda lost with this whole thing anyway right now. lol

Other than trying to find a hotel in Dublin, I realized I was all over the place with planning this thing. So besides for lightly looking into my Dublin hotel options, I decided to go back to the beginning of my trip and plan the itinerary from there. I have a general layout for Israel and now I'm up to the 4th day in Europe.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 27, 2014, 04:42:29 PM
Other than trying to find a hotel in Dublin, I realized I was all over the place with planning this thing. So besides for lightly looking into my Dublin hotel options, I decided to go back to the beginning of my trip and plan the itinerary from there. I have a general layout for Israel and now I'm up to the 4th day in Europe.
You're replanning the Italy stuff? In what order are you doing the cities in Europe?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 27, 2014, 04:50:43 PM
You're replanning the Italy stuff? In what order are you doing the cities in Europe?
No, not replanning anything. Just going back to day 1 and hammering out my plans. When I get to Italy, I'll already have a lot of info in my notes, and I'll just build my itinerary around that. Spain then Italy.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 27, 2014, 05:14:56 PM
Spain then Italy.
What about the rest?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 28, 2014, 08:08:53 AM
Can I get thoughts on Jewish tours? Seems like every city has one (Rome even has a few options) and if you're going the same day as others or work out some sort of discount, you can often get the price down to 45-50 eur pp. (Obviously the tours that cost 300+ eur, like Toledo, are out of the question.) That's great compared to the advertised price of all these tours, which are closer to 100 eur. Additionally, all these European Jewish tours have raving reviews here in the forums and online.

So, my question is: how do you know if it's worth it? I'm sure every tour really will be great. But we're talking $120-140 per couple per tour. The real thing that's bothering me is that it's not all or nothing here. We can walk into the Shul/museum in Florence or in Barcelona and look around ourselves for a fraction of the price. Obviously, we'll be missing out on the tour experience, but is that worth all the money that could otherwise be spent on food and other activities?

Hmmmm.....
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: sky121 on May 28, 2014, 08:41:48 AM
I'd say that's really a decision you're going to have to make. If you want to save money I'd definitely do some of your own 'tours' and history research so you know what you're seeing. In general if you go on a highly rated tour you should be getting a lot out of it.
Other benefits may include skipping long lines and entering places you can't otherwise enter.

I don't necessarily think there is anything wrong with not doing every single tour. Especially depending on what your time is like.
Save something for next time. ;)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 28, 2014, 09:33:39 AM
I'd say that's really a decision you're going to have to make.
I knew that, I just like thinking aloud in public.
If you want to save money I'd definitely do some of your own 'tours' and history research so you know what you're seeing. In general if you go on a highly rated tour you should be getting a lot out of it.
Other benefits may include skipping long lines and entering places you can't otherwise enter.

I don't necessarily think there is anything wrong with not doing every single tour. Especially depending on what your time is like.
Save something for next time. ;)
My uncle is a huge history buff, so he would love walking around by himself. But, I don't think I have time/interest now to start researching the different places we're going. So for that reason, I think I'll opt for more tours.
That was a lot of double-negatives, but I got what you're saying :) Time is not really an issue. In fact, I like the tours because they give definite times/structure to my day, and I can more easily plan things around them.

Haha not sure there will be a next time - kinda why I'm trying to get all of Europe into 1 trip while we're here anyway. I think future vacations (iy"h with kids and such) will more likely be to vacation-ier places.


I think a good idea is to take tours (these are mostly Jewish tours) of places that have a richer Jewish history, like Rome, and pass on places like Florence, where there isn't famous history and just opt to visit the Shul there myself.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: sky121 on May 28, 2014, 10:01:46 AM
Sounds good to me. At the end of the day you have to remind yourself that places are too big and too packed to see everything. And if one city you get more history out of and in another you spend more time just soaking in the people or the architecture that's ok too.

When do you leave again?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 28, 2014, 10:14:41 AM
Sounds good to me. At the end of the day you have to remind yourself that places are too big and too packed to see everything. And if one city you get more history out of and in another you spend more time just soaking in the people or the architecture that's ok too.

When do you leave again?
Right right. Agreed.
2 weeks  ;D ;D
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 29, 2014, 12:02:33 AM
First week planned! (With a few follow-up things still to confirm.)
On to Italy iy"h tomorrow!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SOS on May 29, 2014, 12:15:04 AM
Finally ::)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 29, 2014, 12:16:04 AM
Finally ::)
Yeah, no more time to procrastinate.  :P
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 29, 2014, 08:15:49 AM
I'm staying at the Eliott Hotel in GIB for 1 night (Friday night). I was hoping to get late checkout till after Shabbos but they said housekeeping ends at 5PM, so if I want to be able to checkout after Shabbos ends, I have to pay for another night.

Any ideas? I can't be the first person to ever stay at a hotel just for Friday night. What have you done/said in the past to not pay for Motzai Shabbos?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: lunatic on May 29, 2014, 08:37:58 AM
Right right. Agreed.
2 weeks  ;D ;D

I hope we are going to be getting lots of reports along the way
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: sky121 on May 29, 2014, 08:42:02 AM
I'm staying at the Eliott Hotel in GIB for 1 night (Friday night). I was hoping to get late checkout till after Shabbos but they said housekeeping ends at 5PM, so if I want to be able to checkout after Shabbos ends, I have to pay for another night.

Any ideas? I can't be the first person to ever stay at a hotel just for Friday night. What have you done/said in the past to not pay for Motzai Shabbos?
Not sure about that specific hotel but ...
You can try emailing the manager now. Might be better off waiting though....
Also, a tip never hurts.
Some hotels will charge you a small amount. But even then you can talk your way out of it usually.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 29, 2014, 09:31:06 AM
I hope we are going to be getting lots of reports along the way
Along the way of planning it? I'm probably just going to post what day/city I'm up to. During the TR I plan to post all the details.

Not sure about that specific hotel but ...
You can try emailing the manager now. Might be better off waiting though....
Also, a tip never hurts.
Some hotels will charge you a small amount. But even then you can talk your way out of it usually.
So, I emailed the hotel, but the response came from the Reservations Manager, who may not be the GM there. I'll call the hotel directly and see what I get. Thanks for the ideas, I'll try to play off them when I speak to them.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Ergel on May 29, 2014, 10:13:46 AM
I'm staying at the Eliott Hotel in GIB for 1 night (Friday night). I was hoping to get late checkout till after Shabbos but they said housekeeping ends at 5PM, so if I want to be able to checkout after Shabbos ends, I have to pay for another night.

Any ideas? I can't be the first person to ever stay at a hotel just for Friday night. What have you done/said in the past to not pay for Motzai Shabbos?
Just pack your bags before shabbos and have them take your bags and store them and leave the room before 5
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 29, 2014, 10:23:44 AM
Just pack your bags before shabbos and have them take your bags and store them and leave the room before 5
So tell them beforehand that I can't bring my bags down and checkout, but can they bring my bags down to storage and auto-check me out? Leave the keys in the room?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Emkay on May 29, 2014, 10:30:45 AM
So tell them beforehand that I can't bring my bags down and checkout, but can they bring my bags down to storage and auto-check me out? Leave the keys in the room?
yes its been discussed here countless times
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: DXD on May 29, 2014, 12:43:32 PM
Been seeing this thread for a while...curious what your dates are? We are doing a Euro trip in June - curious there is overlap.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 29, 2014, 02:10:20 PM
yes its been discussed here countless times
Just called the hotel directly to confirm. They said when I checkin on Friday, they'll look at the occupancy for Sat. night. If they're not booked, I can stay in the room for a fee (as Ergel said and hopefully that fee can be "discussed"), otherwise, as Emkay suggested, they said I can leave my bags packed in the room and when housekeeping comes Shabbos morning, they'll bring my bags down to the storage room by the front desk. Super.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Emkay on May 29, 2014, 02:27:23 PM
Just called the hotel directly to confirm. They said when I checkin on Friday, they'll look at the occupancy for Sat. night. If they're not booked, I can stay in the room for a fee (as Ergel said and hopefully that fee can be "discussed"), otherwise, as Emkay suggested, they said I can leave my bags packed in the room and when housekeeping comes Shabbos morning, they'll bring my bags down to the storage room by the front desk. Super.
there are unethical ways of ensuring that the room stays open. ::)>:D
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 29, 2014, 02:39:27 PM
there are unethical ways of ensuring that the room stays open. ::)>:D
Hah. They don't have such a favorable cancellation policy ;)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SamKey on May 30, 2014, 11:32:05 AM
Just called the hotel directly to confirm. They said when I checkin on Friday, they'll look at the occupancy for Sat. night. If they're not booked, I can stay in the room for a fee (as Ergel said and hopefully that fee can be "discussed"), otherwise, as Emkay suggested, they said I can leave my bags packed in the room and when housekeeping comes Shabbos morning, they'll bring my bags down to the storage room by the front desk. Super.
IME the desk people there are a PITA
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: stbaum on May 30, 2014, 11:35:19 AM
PITA? not in acronyms thread
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Dr Moose on May 30, 2014, 11:37:40 AM
PITA? not in acronyms thread
pain in the @ss
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Joe4007 on May 30, 2014, 11:38:04 AM
PITA? not in acronyms thread
Lol. Pain In The Anchor :P
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: stbaum on May 30, 2014, 11:53:02 AM
Lol. Pain In The Anchor :P

alol :D
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 30, 2014, 12:04:57 PM
IME the desk people there are a PITA
Oy, doesn't look like I have too many other options.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 30, 2014, 12:56:22 PM
FYI Yehoshua, my Rabbi just told me I can and should rely on KosherQuest.org
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 30, 2014, 12:57:52 PM
FYI Yehoshua, my Rabbi just told me I can and should rely on KosherQuest.org
Nice. I emailed R' Eidlitz (kosherquest) and haven't heard back from him yet. You can try emailing him too, maybe he'll get back to you. If I do hear back I'll let you know.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 30, 2014, 12:58:23 PM
Nice. I emailed R' Eidlitz (kosherquest) and haven't heard back from him yet. You can try emailing him too, maybe he'll get back to you. If I do hear back I'll let you know.
What were you specifically asking about again?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 30, 2014, 01:45:29 PM
What were you specifically asking about again?
Restaurants in Rome and Ruth's in Florence.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 30, 2014, 01:51:50 PM
Restaurants in Rome and Ruth's in Florence.
Just emailed him about those places as well as a few others on my trip. He has info about England and Paris, so that should be helpful, but yeah still need more cities.
If he doesn't respond, I found this phone number on the site - 818 262 5351
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 30, 2014, 01:58:03 PM
Just emailed him about those places as well as a few others on my trip. He has info about England and Paris, so that should be helpful, but yeah still need more cities.
If he doesn't respond, I found this phone number on the site - 818 262 5351
Thanks!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 30, 2014, 03:08:06 PM
T-Mobile just announced their next Uncarrier event 5.0 will be on June 18. I wonder what benefits it will bring? Maybe free calling internationally? Here's hoping (even for a limited amount of minutes).
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 30, 2014, 03:25:43 PM
T-Mobile just announced their next Uncarrier event 5.0 will be on June 18. I wonder what benefits it will bring? Maybe free calling internationally? Here's hoping (even for a limited amount of minutes).
Cool! Could be very exciting.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 30, 2014, 04:35:15 PM
How do you pay tolls when driving in Europe? Can you just give euro bills or do you need coins?
Is there a toll crossing into GIB? Would I need GBP on hand for that?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 30, 2014, 04:44:58 PM
How do you pay tolls when driving in Europe? Can you just give euro bills or do you need coins?
Is there a toll crossing into GIB? Would I need GBP on hand for that?
I heard that they take coins in Italy (although the people I spoke to didn't remember if they took bills also). They mentioned that it was ticket system similar to the NJ turnpike, and it got a bit confusing at the end when they needed to pay. I know it's not going to be the case for all of your drives, but it may be worth it to take some side roads through Tuscany. It will take a little longer to get to Florence, but from what I hear it's a whole lot prettier. The Autostrada del Sole looks just like an American highway, not too pretty.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: MC on May 30, 2014, 04:48:33 PM
When I drove from Paris to Normandie they took bills too but coins are easier since they're in smaller denominations.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on May 30, 2014, 05:04:55 PM
This video (http://www.wanderingitaly.com/video/italian-autostrada-video.htm#.U4jxkvldV8E) should help your in Italy. If you don't get it after watching you shouldn't be driving there  ;D  ;)
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 30, 2014, 05:23:13 PM
This video (http://www.wanderingitaly.com/video/italian-autostrada-video.htm#.U4jxkvldV8E) should help your in Italy. If you don't get it after watching you shouldn't be driving there  ;D  ;)
Amazing! You shouldn't be driving anywhere if you can't understand that video. That's actually really comforting to see, thanks for the vid!
I feel like taking side roads is gna be confusing esp if the GPS doesn't say to use them and keep trying to get me back on the highway.
When I drove from Paris to Normandie they took bills too but coins are easier since they're in smaller denominations.
Thanks good to know!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SamKey on May 31, 2014, 02:05:11 PM
How do you pay tolls when driving in Europe? Can you just give euro bills or do you need coins?
Is there a toll crossing into GIB? Would I need GBP on hand for that?
No toll going into GIB  but you want to have GBP on hand for parking. In Spain there are tolls (IIRC 1) and you can pay them in cash but they were a bit pricey
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on May 31, 2014, 09:39:05 PM
No toll going into GIB  but you want to have GBP on hand for parking. In Spain there are tolls (IIRC 1) and you can pay them in cash but they were a bit pricey
Thanks appreciate it. Not sure where I'll get GBP beforehand, but there's gotta be an ATM in GIB somewhere. Maybe hotel (Eliott) has parking
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: SamKey on June 01, 2014, 02:27:23 PM
Thanks appreciate it. Not sure where I'll get GBP beforehand, but there's gotta be an ATM in GIB somewhere. Maybe hotel (Eliott) has parking
Not free but there is a free parking lot here- 2-4 Red Sands Rd, Gibraltar
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on June 01, 2014, 02:55:25 PM
Not free but there is a free parking lot here- 2-4 Red Sands Rd, Gibraltar
Nice tip! Thanks!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on June 02, 2014, 04:21:25 PM
Just changed my cash reservation to points for AC Hotel Sevilla-Torneo. 10K Marriott a night and it's about 15 min from airport and 10 min to Hertz which is good for picking up the car to drive to GIB for Shabbos.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on June 08, 2014, 08:05:27 PM
Latest update:
On the way to Israel we were booked EWR-FRA-MUC-TLV in business class for $70, which was pretty sweet although 2 stopovers isn't fantastic. But, I just this minute saw a new flight open up and was able to knock out FRA, so now it's EWR-MUC-TLV in business and not only didn't they charge me the $200 change fee which they should/could have, they gave me a refund as this flight has less fees.

We're flying iy"h one way to Israel in business class for $33!!! 33 freakin dollars!!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on June 08, 2014, 08:24:39 PM
Latest update:
On the way to Israel we were booked EWR-FRA-MUC-TLV in business class for $70, which was pretty sweet although 2 stopovers isn't fantastic. But, I just this minute saw a new flight open up and was able to knock out FRA, so now it's EWR-MUC-TLV in business and not only didn't they charge me the $200 change fee which they should/could have, they gave me a refund as this flight has less fees.

We're flying iy"h one way to Israel in business class for $33!!! 33 freakin dollars!!
Awesome! That's amazing!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Emkay on June 08, 2014, 08:37:12 PM
Latest update:
On the way to Israel we were booked EWR-FRA-MUC-TLV in business class for $70, which was pretty sweet although 2 stopovers isn't fantastic. But, I just this minute saw a new flight open up and was able to knock out FRA, so now it's EWR-MUC-TLV in business and not only didn't they charge me the $200 change fee which they should/could have, they gave me a refund as this flight has less fees.

We're flying iy"h one way to Israel in business class for $33!!! 33 freakin dollars!!
how many miles was it?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on June 08, 2014, 08:38:38 PM
Awesome! That's amazing!
:)
how many miles was it?
Stayed the same at 60K pp.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: sky121 on June 09, 2014, 10:04:46 AM
Btw Rome2Rio is a great site when you're looking at options to get from one place to the next. Should have mentioned that earlier...
maybe it'll still come in handy.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on June 09, 2014, 10:11:10 AM
Btw Rome2Rio is a great site when you're looking at options to get from one place to the next. Should have mentioned that earlier...
maybe it'll still come in handy.
Thanks, looks cool. I wonder how accurate it is with it's cost estimates.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on June 10, 2014, 12:44:16 AM
And the last hotel... Crowne Plaza Brugge (Belgium) - 30K IHG. They say Brugge is Ma'ain Olam Habah. I'll try to let you know. ;)
Can't believe it. Just waiting for some points to post to change my London Marriott Marble Arch reservation to points and then it's done.
32 nights in Europe, all for free.

Tomorrow's the big day! CANNOT BELIEVE IT'S FINALLY HERE!!

Although I didn't post about it too much in this thread, the day-to-day itinerary was almost as hard as booking flights which was almost as hard as opening CC's and collecting points. Lesson: all of this is hard and takes a lot of work. But it can be done.

Just a short 9 months ago...

Anyway, this will probably be my last post in this thread. Thank you all who contributed here with help figuring out flights, teaching me what a OWE was, choosing destinations, and all the random trip tidbits you threw my way. 650 posts helping a guy plan a trip. You guys rock.

For future reference, the TR will iy"h be created here (http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=42333.0).
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: Yehoshua on June 10, 2014, 12:57:40 AM
And the last hotel... Crowne Plaza Brugge (Belgium) - 30K IHG. They say Brugge is Ma'ain Olam Habah. I'll try to let you know. ;)
Can't believe it. Just waiting for some points to post to change my London Marriott Marble Arch reservation to points and then it's done.
32 nights in Europe, all for free.

Tomorrow's the big day! CANNOT BELIEVE IT'S FINALLY HERE!!

Although I didn't post about it too much in this thread, the day-to-day itinerary was almost as hard as booking flights which was almost as hard as opening CC's and collecting points. Lesson: all of this is hard and takes a lot of work. But it can be done.

Just a short 9 months ago...

Anyway, this will probably be my last post in this thread. Thank you all who contributed here with help figuring out flights, teaching me what a OWE was, choosing destinations, and all the random trip tidbits you threw my way. 650 posts helping a guy plan a trip. You guys rock.

For future reference, the TR will iy"h be created here (http://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=42333.0).
YAY!  So exciting. Now all your hard work is a lot to pay off. See you soon!
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on July 06, 2014, 02:40:05 PM
Just updating as we just finalized our last hotel booking. London Marriott Marble Arch for 40K/night. Made this reservation with cash a while ago and finally the points all posted so I was able to convert it to points.
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: TimT on July 06, 2014, 02:43:21 PM
Just updating as we just finalized our last hotel booking. London Marriott Marble Arch for 40K/night. Made this reservation with cash a while ago and finally the points all posted so I was able to convert it to points.
40k/night ? What do they offer ?
Title: Re: @Yehuda's Israel/Eurotrip Honeymoon
Post by: @Yehuda on July 06, 2014, 02:44:26 PM
40k/night ? What do they offer ?
5 min walk to Shul and being near things as opposed to being in Golders Green.