Etihad Adds Free Wifi & Loaner iPads For Premium Passengers On US-Bound Flights

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The US electronics ban has been in place for several days now, and we’ve started to see how airlines are dealing with the ban. Emirates, Etihad, and Turkish have all shared what they’re doing to try and minimize the impact this ban has on passengers.

After all, I don’t think anyone is a fan of this (well, perhaps other than the manufacturers of the boxes that airlines are using to gate check electronics).

While I’m avoiding Gulf carriers at the moment because of the inconvenience of being separated from my electronics, I actually feel pretty comfortable with the approach they’re taking, at least in terms of the risk of my electronics being lost, stolen, or damaged.

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Spirit Airlines Announces Their “Let Them Wear Leggings” Sale

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I can’t say I’ve ever flown Spirit, though I do love their marketing campaigns. And their latest one is pretty brilliant. Spirit Airlines has just announced their “Let Them Wear Leggings” sale, through which they’re offering 75% off flights (which doesn’t mean a whole lot on Spirit, since they make most of their money through fees). I’m actually not even convinced their fare sales are intended to be fare sales, rather than just opportunities to get free publicity.

Here’s how they describe the sale:

“Because of recent headlines, we thought we’d double-check our etiquette atlas. Turns out wearing leggings are not a big deal. We thought everyone knew that, but guess not. Well at least at Spirit, we’re united (cough) about letting young girls dress how they want. If you want to fly with us, get your leggings on ladies. Or even gentlemen. No judgments here. Unless you’re wearing those new clear-knee mom jeans, then some judgments. But you can still fly with us. Just use this deal so that next time you can buy a complete pair of pants.”

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INSANE DEAL: $770 Roundtrip Business Class Tickets From Bangkok To Toronto

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While this won’t be useful to everyone, this is an insanely good deal that I can’t not share. Per this FlyerTalk thread, Ethiopian has published some crazy low business class fares from Bangkok to Toronto. You can fly roundtrip refundable business class for $770 (select “Cloud 9 Deluxe” rather than “Cloud 9 Restricted,” since it’s only marginally more but gives you a lot more flexibility).

This is bookable directly on Ethiopian’s website, which is the best place to search, since not all availability shows up on Google Flights.

The total roundtrip fare is 26470THB.

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Air India’s New Delhi To Washington Flight Is Now Bookable

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This route shouldn’t come as much of a surprise, given that it has been rumored for a while. As I first wrote about in January, Air India was planning on launching 3x weekly flights between Delhi and Washington Dulles as of July 2017.

While we’ve known about the route for a couple of months, the route now just finally became bookable.

Air India is launching 3x weekly flights between Delhi and Washington Dulles as of July 7, 2017. The route will operate with the following schedule on Sundays, Wednesdays, and Fridays:

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What American’s $200 Million Investment In China Southern Means For Passengers

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Last week I wrote about how American was apparently in advanced talks regarding buying a stake in China Southern. Well, it’s a rumor no more, as that stake has now been finalized.

It was announced today that American has committed to making a $200 million equity investment in China Southern, which they claim “creates a strong foundation for a long-term relationship between two of the world’s biggest carriers.”

This new partnership goes beyond an equity investment:

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Review: Korean Air Business Class 747-8 San Francisco To Seoul

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Given that I’ve flown Korean Air’s first class so many times before on the 747-8, 777, and A380 (thanks to the great value of converting Ultimate Rewards points into Korean Air SkyPass miles), I was curious to see how their business class product stacked up.

We boarded through door L1, where we turned right into the lower deck business class cabin. Korean Air has 26 business class seats on the 747-8 lower deck, spread across five rows in a 2-2-2 configuration (the last row only has two seats in the center).

This is an extremely spacious layout for the lower deck of the 747, and the aisles in this cabin must be among the widest in any business class cabin.

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I’m Polarising To Hong Kong!

United Polaris seat (PRNewsFoto/United Airlines)

Late last year United introduced their new Polaris international premium cabin experience, which includes new seats, new service, new lounges, etc. I’ve been fascinated by the new product (largely from a marketing standpoint more than anything else), and have been wondering if the product lives up to the hype.

However, I haven’t been sure about the best way to review the product, given that United is already offering the Polaris soft product across the board, yet only a few planes have their new seats so far. It will be at least five years until all planes are reconfigured with the new Polaris seats (and we recently learned about delays with the seat manufacturer, so it could be even longer).

While United is advertising the heck out of the new product, a vast majority of people will only experience the new soft product anytime soon. To me this seems like premature marketing, since it inevitably leads to disappointment when you advertise a product even before it’s available on any planes.

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World Of Hyatt Promotion: Earn Double Points Through June 30, 2017

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Last October we first learned about World of Hyatt, which replaced Hyatt Gold Passport as Hyatt’s loyalty program. The program kicked in as of March 1, 2017, and has gotten a mixed response.

Well, the first World of Hyatt promotion has just been announced, which is called “Double Points for Being You.”

Through this promotion, World of Hyatt members can earn double base points for all stays between April 1 and June 30, 2017, starting with the second stay. Here’s what Jeff Zidell, SVP of World of Hyatt had to say about the promotion:

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Great Deal: Iberia Is Offering 25% Off Award Redemptions

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Iberia Plus is celebrating their 25th anniversary, and they have a great promotion as a result. While we’ve seen some targeted Iberia Avios promotions in the past that offer discounts for select routes, this is the most widely available promotion I’ve seen from them yet.

Iberia is offering 25% off award tickets that are booked by April 11, 2017. There are a few further restrictions:

— Valid for travel through June 15, 2017, or for travel between October 1 and December 15, 2017
— Valid for travel exclusively on Iberia flights, though in all classes of service
— Only valid for travel on off-peak dates

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A Great Hotel Credit Card Has An Even Better Sign-Up Bonus

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The Marriott Rewards® Premier Credit Card is offering the biggest sign-up bonus I ever recall seeing on this card, allowing you to earn up to 107,500 points upon completing minimum spend and adding an authorized user.

Under this new offer on the Marriott Rewards® Premier Credit Card, you can earn:

— 100,000 Marriott Rewards bonus points after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
— 7,500 bonus points when you add your first authorized user and they make a purchase within three months

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American’s Premium Economy Is Now On Sale — Here’s What You Need To Know

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In late 2015 American announced that they planned on adding a premium economy cabin to much of their longhaul fleet. While the airline has long offered an extra legroom economy section, this is the first time they’re offering an actual premium economy cabin.

The premium economy cabin has debuted on American’s new Boeing 787-9 aircraft, though will eventually also be added to their A330s, 777s, 787-8s, and A350s.

Up until now American has been operating the 787-9 on several routes, though hasn’t actually been selling premium economy. Instead they’ve been letting passengers who have access to Main Cabin Extra assign seats there.

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United’s Leggings Fiasco: The False Narrative Needs To Stop

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If you’ve been on a plane or under a rock, you might have missed the story of the two young women who were denied boarding a United flight from Denver to Minneapolis yesterday. I get that manufactured outrage and hot takes are a way of life in 2017. I don’t love it.

The news cycle is driven by these stories, and outlets often have no choice but to participate in the frenzy or be left behind. I mean, I really would rather be spending my day writing my overdue report on Swiss First (sneak peek: it was amazing, and they had fondue onboard), but even here at OMAAT we’re being inundated with questions about this story.

Which wouldn’t even be a story, if folks could acknowledge that they might not have had all the facts initially, and would stop perpetuating a false narrative and witch hunt. Just as United apologized for their initial tweets, Shannon Watts and others should retract theirs, or at the very least recognize that they didn’t have their facts straight.

And as so often happens, the more attention this story gets, the murkier the facts become, and the details are obscured by sensationalism.

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Mini-Review: United Polaris In-Flight Dining With The New Spring Menu

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The new United Polaris soft product rolled out in December, and features improved dining and bedding options. The new United Polaris Lounge in Chicago opened at the same time, and added restaurant-style dining in mid-January. And the new all-aisle access seats have recently debuted, albeit on a very limited number of routes.

The new seats won’t be installed fleet-wide for years — and it seems that might even be optimistic — the in-flight Polaris experience is all about the bedding and the meal service. My family flew United Polaris in January and found the food to be a distinct improvement over the past, both with the selection and the quality.

Well, apparently United is planning on revising the menu on a quarterly basis. I recently had a chance to sample some of the new offerings which rolled out March 1st.

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Cathay Pacific & Lufthansa Announce A New Partnership

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Global airline alliances are so two decades ago. Nowadays we’re seeing these alliances deemphasized, and in the meantime we’re seeing joint ventures and individual strategic cooperations increasing in importance. After all, with how big the global alliances have gotten, there’s only so much that the airlines have in common across the board.

Well, Cathay Pacific (a member of oneworld) and Lufthansa (a member of Star Alliance) have just announced a partnership. Here’s how they’re describing it:

— Cathay Pacific Airways, Lufthansa, Swiss and Austrian Airlines, sign code-share and frequent flyer agreement
Shared flights will mean numerous benefits for passengers
— Connecting flights via Hong Kong to Australia and New Zealand under same flight number in future

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