A 17,000+ mile travel week

File this week’s mileage run under “it seemed like a good idea at the time.” And it mostly still does, though the more I look at my itinerary and the timing on some of the flights the more I’m questioning my sanity. A total of more than 17,000 miles flown and the calculator says a hair under 100,000 bmi Diamond Club points earned. Not bad for a few days in the air and less than $500 in total airfare. Oh, and almost all of it is in first class. But, like any good story, there’s more to it than that.

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The trip starts this morning with a positioning flight from Newark to Minneapolis, via Milwaukee. I think I’m earning a few points for my Delta SkyMiles account on these flights but I’m not positive. I’m also not too worried about it. The flights are short and the ticket was cheap. Plus, it is my first time flying on Midwest – way too late to get the classic experience, but better late than never – and a couple new lines for my map.

Tomorrow the real meat of the trip starts. A trip from Minneapolis to Spokane, Washington, routed via Chicago, New Orleans and Denver. The return on Sunday routes via Denver and Houston before finishing up in Chicago. I’m stopping in Chicago on Sunday night – and giving up a few miles – because bright and early on Monday morning I’m headed back to Spokane, this time on US Airways and via Phoenix.

Monday afternoon I actually stop flying for 26 hours and take advantage of the positioning to visit Idaho and play a round of golf at the Coeur d’Alene Resort. The course is supposed to be beautiful. Hopefully it still is when I’m done with it on Tuesday morning. I’m driving that afternoon and I’ve got an 8:40am tee time so I’ll probably be sober for the round, too. It has been a while since I’ve played golf and even longer since I did it without a few beers. Should be interesting.

Tuesday afternoon the crazy flying starts right back up, with Spokane – Chicago via Phoenix. Wednesday morning, about 6 hours after I get to Chicago, I turn around and do the Chicago-Phoenix-Spokane-Phoenix-Chicago run all over again. A 17 hour day of flying that should pretty much push me over to the top in terms of insanity. That wraps up the bmi earning for the week and is 98,738 Diamond Club points, give or take a few.

Finally, Thursday morning I fly Midway – LaGuardia on Delta. That one segment should earn me about 20,000 points thanks to the fly together bonus scheme Delta is running right now.

That was supposed to be the end of my travel week. Then I got a call from a potential client about a sales call in Maine on Friday. So Thursday night, after swapping out my suitcase at home, I get JFK – Portland, ME. I think I’m coming home on Saturday by train. That adds up to 17,466 miles flown according to the Great Circle Mapper.

All in all, a pretty ridiculous schedule but also a lot of potential for fun. And it could have been worse. At one point I had a trip to Germany for the day penciled in on Thursday night/Friday rather than Maine.

Up, up and away…..

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Seth Miller

I'm Seth, also known as the Wandering Aramean. I was bit by the travel bug 30 years ago and there's no sign of a cure. I fly ~200,000 miles annually; these are my stories. You can connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.


  1. Ha! I have lots of those- “looks good on paper, but…”
    Which map software is that in the post?
    Good luck!

  2. Your travel week is a lot more painful than my recent 23k flown miles over 3 1/2 days 😉

    @Mangi that is Great Circle Mapper (gcmap.com).

  3. Well, 23K miles in 3.5 days sounds like a lot of long-haul flying. And I know you don’t do that down the back so much. My flights are almost all in F but it is UA A320 F for the most part. Not the finest product in the sky. Better than a poke in the eye, but still…

  4. Domestic First on UA is only marginally more comfortable than Economy Plus on UA. I am doing about 20k miles over the course of 3 weeks, and i am not all that excited about it, despite UDU likely giving me F on most if not all legs. I know, I am a whimp, but those are all personal trips that have a purpose other than EQM and RDM (though the EQM are useful, too, of course).

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