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Re: airport lounges
Can I use the AA lounge at LHR when flying VS Y if I have a Citi AAdvantage Executive card?
You have full Admirals Club membership with the Citi AA Exec. You can use the lounge anytime, even when flying other airlines.

September 08, 2016, 01:43:08 AM
Re: Chase Sapphire Reserve BENEFITS master thread Had breakfast at our local Ritz-Carlton Rancho Mirage. One of our favorite breakfast spots. Used the CSR. Coded as hotel. Got breakfast for free.
November 02, 2016, 06:34:22 PM
I am sure that if you wait more than 6 minutes before bumping your post, somebody in-the-know might chime in.

Give it a few hours and stop shouting.

December 15, 2016, 08:18:40 PM
Re: Lanai, Molokai, and Niihau, Hawaii Master Thread
You did it via the Heli Tour for a half day trip? Or a different way? If you could share how you went about it, that would be great and appreciated. Some of us are making our way over there fairly soon :)
Niihau Helicopters Inc.

Check in at 12:45 p.m. at the office in Kaumakani.

We were greeted by Ua. A young woman born and raised on Niihau, recently married and migrated to Kaumakani. She spoke perfect English but it was such a joy hearing her speak native Hawaiian to one of her relatives.

Realize the the Robinsons own a majority of this side of Kauai around Kaumakani,  Hanapepe, and Kekaha. Approximately 62k acres. Bruce's main estate is here and this is where the people of Niihau often migrate part of the year or semi-permanantly. They have a church on Niihau and one in Kaumakani.

We viewed a jewelry case of the Niihau shell leis and ended up purchasing a few. Ua was the artist for some of the pieces. They are much more affordable there than anywhere else in Hawaii. And I like directly supporting the artists. I purchsed a lei for my self and DD, and my DW got matching lei, bracelet and earrings. It was $250 for mine and $150 for DD. DW's set waa $650. They had pieces in the thousands. They are truly amazing and a very special momentum.

Take-off at 1:30 p.m. from Port Allen Airport about 3 miles from the office.
Arrived over the island in about 15 minutes.

Circumnavigated the south end for about 10 minutes and landed on the west side at Nonopapa. We were the first guests at Nonopapa in almost a year.

The usually land on the north end directly across from Lehua, but it was too windy to enjoy.

Hung out till a bit after 5 p.m.

The waves were too rough to snorkel but you could wade a bit.

But the wind was calm and the temperature perfect. Mostly sunny. Partial clouds so you didn't get baked. No shade trees.

You are allowed to bring alot of gear. Bet a collapsible beach umbrella would be good in summer. I hear it can get hot.

You are encouraged to collect shells. There were millions literally.

The sand was the most comfortable I've ever enjoyed. Its golden, coarse, smooth, soft and not sticky. The sand on the north side is white and fine.

We explored this very long stretch of beach for the majority of time. There were some nice tidepoools, cool albino sand crabs and big black crabs and about 20 monk seals.

We also explored an old sheep farm structute and then the Kiawe tree forest behind us which broke out to a semi-dry lake bed. We saw wild a wild boar while hiking and alot of large animal bones, different scat and numerous different tracks.

They packed us a nice sandwich lunch.

The island gets alot of sea debris unfortunately. The residents have neither the time or manpower to clean it up, nor a disposal site. Nonopapa was rather quite free of debris but I have seen pics of other sites that were truly sad.

When we took off, we toured the rest of the island up the west side to the north and through the center. I was in the back so my pics aren't the best. We can't fly over Puuwai, the main village, but only a half mile to the east. You can see it as well as Bruce Robinson's estate.

From the air we did see alot of widlife. Hundreds of large running and grazing herds.
Wild Polynesian Boar, Hybrid Sheep, Wild Eland, Wild Aoudad (Barbary Sheep) and Wild Oryx.

The Agusta 109A helicopter is 35 years old, well maintained and comfortable. Despite very windy conditions the ride was smooth.

Our pilot was George. We also met the other pilot Dana. Both couldn't have been more personable, warm or knowledgeable. They have been working for Bruce for decades and are some of the few Howleys that actually get to spend alot of time with the residents. They are a wealth of information and willing to answer any questions.

I would suggest you read everything you can on the Internet (including recent news articles on the socio-economic and political issues), watch YouTube videos and get a couple used books off of Amazon. Knowing the history and current events of the island, its people, the Simpsons and Robinsons and it ties with Kauai made the trip more enjoyable.

I only took a few phone pics. The majority are on my good equipment and 4k video camera so I won't share those until after my return but a few phone pics are included below.

If you want to book, be persistent but patient in your communications. Sometimes they were quick to respond, other times not. They are a very loving and giving people.

Everything in the end went timely and right on schedule.

I encourage you to take this rare opportunity. I had a party of 4. I was willing to purchase a 5th seat which is the minimum. Luckily, a couple booked the same time so I didn't have to burn $400. This was that couples 11th trip to Niihau.

Aloha and mahalo for reading.

After taking a hike, upon our return this monk seal was laying on top of our stuff. I had to shoo him away.

Look closely. Black butt of wild boar running away.

Semi-dry lake bed dotted with black lava boulders. They look like tombstones.  It was rather eerie.

The village in the distance.


December 30, 2016, 12:41:17 PM
Re: Elite Member Groups! I have admin a forum with 250k members for 6 years and mod another with 20k members for 2 years. It takes patience, dedication, and a passion for the subject. So many apply for, or get tapped as mods, but find out they just don't have the time or the desire. What gets me are the ones who continue to regularly contribute to the general forum, but won't give the mod forum the time of day and help out then get mad when they are demoted. It seems that some like title only.

January 27, 2017, 11:40:42 AM