Traveling on United to Boston For New Year’s Eve

Flying over the Sierra Nevada

Flying over the Sierra Nevada

So I decided I hadn’t traveled enough in 2016 (a dubious assessment, you might rightly think) and I therefore took off today, December 30th, to spend New Year’s in Boston with my son. He broke up with his girlfriend this Fall and was planning on dinner alone at a family favorite restaurant that I introduced him to, Cragie on Main. This upset his mother. Oh, and I might also mention that a trip to Boston pre-January 1 would throw me over the finish line for 1K status with United next year. So my long-suffering husband (who hates New Year’s and hardly ever stays up till midnight on New Year’s with me anyway) said MERRY CHRISTMAS and here I am on a United flight to ORD (Chicago) and then BOS (Boston) to meet my son. It’s funny, but as you get near 1K status, all of a sudden you can speak in airport shorthand…

In any event, I also decided to try to burn some RPU certificates that I got as a Platinum elite flyer with United. I got a fairly cheap flight and booked myself into Economy Plus…and even though all the flights had TONS of first class seats, of course United waitlisted me on all of them. Um, thanks United. And then on this flight I go to check in and there are still 2 seats left in first class. United, in it’s non-infinite wisdom, decided they would try to upsell the remaining first class seats for $200 each (yep, I was offered to BUY the seat for $200 at check-in) instead of honoring my hard-earned RPU. Of course they both sold for that price and I ended up #1 on the upgrade list and my upgrade didn’t clear. I hope that the $200 makes the difference in your yearly profitability report United, cause It seriously pissed off this frequent flyer.

United Club at ORD

United Club at ORD

In any event, after years of selecting aisle seats for easy access to bathrooms and stretching legs, I’m also back in window seats. Just seems more roomy; no humans at all on the window side, and I can angle my laptop into the window area and I just FEEL more private. I have an old lady. asleep in the middle seat, so I’ll just cross my legs for the rest of the flight and hope for the best.

Food-wise, I purchased the new buy-on-board Artisan Cheese offering. HUGE improvement from the dull cold blocks of concrete United used to serve as a cheese plate. You now get 4 cheeses (cheddar, brie, gouda and another yummy semi-hard cheese), 6 Carr’s crackers, some nice red grapes, and HONEY. Plus a very nice Godiva truffle for desert. All United needs to add is a handful of almonds to hit this thing out of the park. I REALLY enjoyed this, and I rarely enjoy any food served in coach.

I also have working (purchased) wi-fi, which is something of a miracle these days. SO, overall coach in United gets 2 thumbs up; their handling of my RPU gets 2 thumbs down. I guess I’m happy I’m upgraded on the really short hop from ORD to BOS though? But that one was so clear open I would have gotten a complimentary upgrade anyway, so whatever.

I’ll report about my dinner from Cragie on Main…it’s a price-fixed dinner we’ll be starting around 10pm. The Van Pattens are definitely a gourmand bunch! I’m also really excited since I haven’t been on the East Coast OR out in a city for New Year’s Eve for probably over 20 years! I’m a city girl at heart, and although I’ve enjoyed all those country New Year’s Eves with family and friends, I’m kind-of excited to go back to my roots for this one.

I return on New Years Day late and then take off next morning for Lake Tahoe, my first trip of the year, with the rest of my family. Happy New Year to all!

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