web Musings of The Global Traveller

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

New route, new hotel

I've mentioned before that one of my travel goals is to fly all the routes of an airline (over 100 routes). Naturally this is a shifting target as new routes get added from time to time, and old routes removed. I've achieved this goal twice, temporarily, and will do so again shortly.

Air New Zealand has a new route which I'll be flying. There is also one current route I have not yet flown, although I'm undecided on whether it counts or not toward my goal. The reason - it is a special flight which combines two destinations from one origin, and thus flies between two small regional airports which normally would not have flights between them. The flight is once per week, and doesn't operate all the time. Is it a regularly scheduled service if flights are this infrequent and sporadic?

Recently I decided that I would, after all, fly this route. The thing that helped me decide was the schedule requires an overnight stop at a nice regional place, and a hotel has been newly rebranded to a major chain. This the first international chain hotel at this tourist spot, only the second hotel of this chain in the country, and supposedly one of only a handful of 5 star hotels in the country. So I'll get a nice weekend stay in a very pretty and interesting place, fly another odd route, and try out a newly refurbished and supposedly very nice hotel. I'm sold.

Oh yeah, I also get some hotel points which will prevent my modest balance in that program from expiring, so the "value" of the stay is really in excess of the points I'll earn there.

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