A 20 hour trip, condensed into 2 minutes

Lots of folks have dinner in Portland, Oregon on any given night. Or course, most of them actually live in Portland and aren’t visiting from New York City for 3 hours, but that’s just part of the entertainment value to me. A couple weeks ago I found myself flying out for dinner, thanks to the $120ish fares United Airlines offered back in January.

I took a whole bunch of photos and videos over the 20 or so hours I was on the road, from snacks to planes to trains, and then edited them together into a roughly two minute time-lapse of the trip. I think it came out pretty well; I hope you agree.

The trip was, by nearly every standard, textbook. Upgrades cleared, flights were on time and I even managed to get home an hour early, albeit in the very last row of coach rather than my original upgraded seat. I slept a little bit, ate a little bit and drank a little bit (probably more of this last category than the other two).

I’m looking forward to the two more of this fare I’ve got booked, as well as a few other similar trips over the coming weeks. Really a pleasant way to spend a day.

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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. I wish I jumped on more of these, just couldn’t make the dates work. Portland is always a nice place for a (brief) visit. 😉

    1. I wish I could spend more time in Portland, Gene. I actually love it as a city to visit and earlier in the year I spent a couple nights there. And while I agree that it is a reasonable use of my time, Nik, that mid-con redeye is anything but pleasant.

      Yes, I’m eating a torta in ORD and it was awesome. As for the video editing, Microsoft’s Live Movie Maker is my tool of choice. Not particularly powerful but neither are my skills. I think we’re a pretty good match.

  2. Nice video. Just curious – what premium do you add to BIS miles that help you earn status? There are many ways now to “buy” miles for less than 2 cents per, but those won’t earn you status. How much more are you willing to pay for MRs like these, and how do you calculate that?

  3. That’s awesome! What’d you use for the editing? And I hope that was a torta at O’Hare. My vote for best airport food in the US, I think.

    And I’m starting to agree that flying somewhere for dinner and back on the redeye is a perfectly pleasant use of an evening. I just did MSN-ORD-SFO-DFW-AUS with 6 hours for a long dinner in San Francisco and had a great time (and more double EQMs!), but I totally failed to make a cool video about it. 🙂

  4. You were out quickly! You missed such a great movie as well. At least I had full service as I am pretty sure everyone else slept. Great vid

  5. Hello,

    I love the photos out of the airplan window and the video. Are you using an iphone for the clips or something else? Care to advise what you use for those great pics?


    1. The tortas are from Tortas Frontera near B10. AWESOME food. One of the best in-airport dining experiences out there.

      I’m not sure if you’re actually trying to imply anything, Andrew, but I am quite certain that my “status” as a blogger doesn’t get me any extra upgrades or such. It does, from time to time, get me access to better customer service when things go wrong, but even that isn’t particularly common. As for flying in Y to get home early, I’ve done it many times. I flew in 25E on a 735 the other day just to make sure I’d make my connection when things started to look bad. Would I prefer F? Sure. But I know there are likely others paying more for it.

  6. It’s refreshing to hear about the occasions when someone with top status (and a blogger as well) is willing to fly coach if it means getting home earlier. I’ve given up first class upgrades several times this year in order to make it home a couple hours early, and people look at me like I’m nuts…glad to know I’m not the only one.

  7. I side with Seth, Andrew. Unless my upgrade comes with a meal, or I’m on a red-eye, the upgrade to F on domestic flights is nice but not that important. I’m usually just reading a book anyway.

  8. Hey Seth, As I’m sure you know, PDX used to have an amazing “destination” sushi restaurant just outside security and perfect for MRs, Rose City Cafe. Unfortunately, it has closed. I will miss it on the MRs I booked. PDX has amazing food – but it used to be, you didn’t have to leave the airport 🙁

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