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ANA Flight NH1011 – Chicago-ORD to Tokyo-NRT – B777-300ER
Let’s Go: Yangon, Myanmar
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A Ride on the Circle Train – Yangon, Myanmar
Let’s SEE: Yangon, Myanmar
Off We Go!
US to Europe + Caribbean for Only 46K Miles Thanks to Flying Blue Promo in June/July
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April 1, 2015

How-to: Booking a Train Ticket on Myanmar Railways

When faced with the decision on how to get around from city to city in Myanmar, the train seemed like a solid choice. On this trip, the only one like it in recent memory, we were doing our best to ditch the standard “Weekend Blitz” type of travel that we’ve come to embrace, feeling like we’re going at 110% all of the time and trying to cram 25 hours into every day. For this trip, we had time on our side and a greater desire to jump into the local culture and see how everyday life is lived for the Burmese.

So, intent on taking the train while in Myanmar, we settled on the Yangon-Mandalay route. The times were appropriate for taking it overnight which [...]

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March 31, 2015

US to Europe + Caribbean for Only 46K Miles Thanks to Flying Blue Promo in June/July

Note: Booking begins on Wednesday April 1, 2015.

Don’t miss out on Flying Blue’s spring promo, which allows you to book Air France/KLM awards for 25-50% less than normal in June and July 2015:

The Deal

Award bookings on Air France/KLM routes have been reduced by 25-50% for travel between June 1, 2014 – July 31, 2015.

For those of us sitting in ‘Merica, we’ll be most interested in:

REGION—- USA CITY——————————- Atlanta-ATL to [...]
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March 30, 2015

Let’s SEE: Yangon, Myanmar

Ok, so here goes nothing: our first crack at a video. Is it boring? Maybe. Does it give a decent overview of Yangon? Ehh, you can be the judge... So here it is, our first (and maybe last) city video:
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March 25, 2015

A Ride on the Circle Train – Yangon, Myanmar

On yet another hazy day in Yangon, we headed up the road to the main train station (the same one that would carry us off days later on the overnight Yangon-Mandalay train) to board the Circle Train, taking us in a circle around Yangon’s “suburbs” and then back into the city.

Because most locals can’t afford apartments in the city proper, the vast majority lives in the suburbs but finds work inside the city. This Circle Train is the preferred method of transportation in and out of the city as traffic can get pretty brutal (and, of course, you have to own a car or motorbike). So, riding this Circle Train provides an unspoiled glimpse into local life away from the [...]

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March 24, 2015

Shwedagon Pagoda + Surrounding Area

The gleaming, gilded pagoda is your first spectacular view of Yangon on arrival, dominating the city’s skyline and commanding your instant attention (especially at night time!). Up on a hill, this 2,600 year old Buddhist temple is a sight to behold, towering over Myanmar’s largest city and reminding you of ancient times while connecting you to a very real, present-day Yangon. The number one site in Yangon (and probably all of Myanmar) is known as the Crown of Burma and is the country’s most revered shrine, a sprawling temple that boasts eight hairs plucked from Buddha.

Although legend holds that the stupa is more than 2,600 years old, some historians believe it [...]

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March 23, 2015

KAL Lounge Review – Tokyo Nartia-NRT Terminal 1

Korean Airlines Business Class Lounge Tokyo Narita International Airport Terminal 1, Gate 26 7:45am – 8:50pm

For our 1 night layover in Japan following our flight from Chicago to Tokyo on ANA, we stayed at the Radisson Narita that I booked using Orbucks that I earned from booking other flights and hotels over the past few months. The hotel was fine, but the shuttle service ran every 60-70 mins. For us, this meant we’d need to err on the side of caution and take the earlier shuttle the morning of our flight to Yangon, which resulted in a decent chunk of time at Narita.

I checked my Priority Pass app to see which of the Tokyo lounges participate and found that, of [...]

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March 19, 2015

Let’s Go: Yangon, Myanmar

Yangon is a city in the throes of growing, busting at the seams with young locals eager to learn more about the world outside its borders and more tourists than ever before.

City streets are filled with street eats, smiling faces and bright colors.

Myanmar welcomes about 1 million tourists each year and, compared to its neighbor Thailand’s many millions of annual visitors, that’s a drop in the bucket – but, only a hand full of Burmese cities and towns are set up for tourists and Western hotel chains have barely scratched the surface of the country (we think that’s a good thing). So, while Thailand’s many visitors are spread out among [...]

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March 18, 2015

ANA Flight NH1011 – Chicago-ORD to Tokyo-NRT – B777-300ER

Our first international flight of our first journey felt like it might never arrive when we booked it a few months ago, but, like all things time related, it was here in a flash. Our first segment, from Chicago-ORD to Tokyo-TYO was merely a stopover on our way to Yangon, Myanmar-RGN. Because ANA has only 1 daily flight to Yangon (around 11am), there’s no international arrival from the US that would allow us to catch it.

As we headed to Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport, we were musing that this was actually both of our first west-bound trip across the Pacific Ocean. We have flown Hong Kong to Chicago and Tokyo to Newark before, but never the opposite direction. The best [...]

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