The title says it all. Next summer, Mrs MJonTravel and I will be taking an 11-night Eastern Mediterranean cruise aboard Celebrity Equinox, sailing from Rome (Civitavecchia). We intend to fly over a few days early to visit friends in Naples and do a little sight-seeing. This means we will leave for Italy in late June, preferably, mid week, and return on July 16th.
I don’t have to tell you that this is peak season for US – Europe travel, and that I expect using miles at the “restricted” award level to be a challenge. That said, I’m going to try. We are at the beginning of the 330 day booking window for the outbound trip. I’ve armed myself with subscriptions to Expertflyer.com and MileageManager.com to aid in my search for seats. I also intend to utilize the services of telephone agents at AAdvantage to assist me in my quest. Any fees they charge will be worth the cost. I am mildly flexible on the departure day, but want to return on 7/16, the day we get off the ship. However, I can be a little flexible on that too. I will also consider awards on partner airlines and take any number of alternative routings to reach Italy.
So, there you have the basics of my quest. I’m sure it will be a learning experience for me. If you have any advice to offer, please comment to the blog. And I will post frequently about my successes and setbacks in my quest to get to Italy in premium class using miles.