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  • Up In The Air: Swift Edition

    Exploring the world and seeing new places is one of the most incredible things that you can do, and it’s something that everyone on our team has a passion for. But as we all know, getting to your destination can be quite the journey at times, especially if you have to endure a lengthy flight.

    This got us thinking. Since everyone has their own experiences and stories when it comes to travel, we wanted to know more about some of the experiences our own team members have had, specifically, while up in the air. What we found is that every flight is different from another, and there’s always a story or learning lesson to be had along the way.

    So as you read about the unique flight stories from our team members, we hope that you get in a laugh or two, learn some new tips and tricks when it comes to air travel, and reminisce about your very own “up in the air” experiences. Enjoy!

    Up in the Air: Rob

    The Longest flight I’ve taken was from Missoula, MT to Bangkok Thailand, and the flight back. The total travel time was close to 26 hours. Missoula to Seattle to Tokyo to Bangkok. The way there seemed so much shorter than the way home, most likely because of the excitement. An interesting fact about the date of this trip was that we landed in Bangkok 5 days after the massive Tsunami in the Indian Ocean in 2004. We figured the flight would be canceled but it was business as usual! The flight back was interesting, I didn’t sleep for almost 36 hours and was semi-delirious when I returned! 

    Someone told me on that trip to choose an airline and stick with it, as it will eventually pay off. We fly American Airlines and OneWorld Alliance airlines as often as possible. Sometimes there are less expensive options (usually not by much) or more accommodating departure/arrival times, however the plan of sticking with American has definitely paid off over the years. Also booking direct with them has been a crucial piece, especially now, as later this year to earn miles/points with many airlines they are only allowing earnings when booked direct or via a few select travel agencies and sites!

    My next trip is to Germany with my brother and his family! I cannot wait because Germany has been on my list of places to go for a long time and I am finally able to go!

    Up in the Air: Laurie

    The longest flight I ever had was strangely to Aruba. When I was in my 20’s I flew from South Africa to Costa Rica, and that while that was a tough flight, the infamous flight to Aruba was 3 days due to 1 emergency landing, and unplanned 2 night layover in St Lucia, and then a second emergency landing when our plane hit a flock of birds during takeoff! Luckily, I was with seasoned travelers who were able to laugh off the comedy of errors, and we still talk about that 3 day trip to Aruba often! 

    We fly American and American affiliates only. We wrack up the points and have been able to get lots of first class upgrades, free hotel stays etc. Sticking to one airline and booking direct with the airline vs through a third party is my best advice! 

    My next trip is to Germany this summer. I have never been and am so excited!  There are 7 of us going (3 are little kids), and they don’t know yet, but I will be making them reenact all my favorite parts of the Sound of Music while we are there. 

    Up in the Air: Paul

    The longest flight I have ever been on is Amsterdam to Mexico City. It takes around 12 hours and is a non-stop flight. This is a flight that I usually do twice a year so four long flights in total per year. You would think that I’d be used to it now but it still gives me sleepless nights beforehand. I always struggle to settle, feel constantly restless and have to get up a lot to stretch my legs. I try to sleep but it is usually a pointless task. But, at the same time, I take solace in the fact that at either end of the journey I am going to be somewhere that I love with people that I care about deeply! So that makes it all worthwhile.  

    I only use AeroMexico for this trip. They are a pretty good airline, the planes are comfy and they give out free tequila so I cannot complain! 

    My next trip will be this same trip but flying to London instead around June. 

    Up in the Air: Jennifer

    The longest flight I’ve been on was a 15 hour flight from Toronto to Shanghai. The flight had the most terrifying turbulence I have ever experienced but the flight attendants kept giving us free wine throughout to calm our nerves! 

    My favorite airline is Etihad Airlines. I have flown with many airlines but they are by far the most glamorous and as someone who never flies first class, this is the closest experience to first class I’ve had! The seats are big and comfy and they also give you a menu to order from with half decent food that doesn’t taste like boring standard airplane food. I flew with them from Cape Town to Dubai and by far is the most pleasant flight I have had. 

    My next flight will be to Calgary to go to Banff National Park over July 4th weekend to do some hiking and relaxing in the rocky mountains. 

    Up in the Air: Shaina

    The longest flight I’ve ever had was to Honolulu, Hawaii for a family vacation. We flew from our hometown in Chicago to Honolulu, and the flight was a little over 9 hours. Our flight was very early in the morning, but thankfully I managed to get about 2-3 hours of sleep while on the plane. The last 2 hours of the flight I started to become a little restless and anxious for the flight to end.  

    The flight to Hawaii was pretty stress free, and the look of paradise after our arrival was so refreshing after such a long flight.  

    We flew to Hawaii on Delta Airlines, which is my favorite. They always have the best in-flight movies! 

    My next trip is a quick girls trip to Houston, TX for my birthday in June. I’m hoping to attend my first Rodeo while I’m there. 

    Up in the Air: Andre

    The longest flight I ever had was from Los Angeles to NYC for a AT&T meeting with a business customer. The flight was an overnight red eye leaving LA at midnight and arriving in NYC at 6am with the time change. As people that know me are aware, I can sleep anywhere so after a long wait in LAX, we boarded the plane and I snuggled up to the window and went to sleep. When I woke up I was in Charlotte! The plane had been redirected for “mechanical issues”. 

    When we got to the gate we were taken off of the plane and waited another 3 hours before getting on another plane. It took us to Pittsburgh where we waited another 2 hours. I finally got to Newark that evening after 6pm having been almost 20 hours after leaving LA.   

    Up in the Air: Amber

    The longest flight I have ever been on was from Los Angeles to Greece. I think we were flying a total of 17 hours or so. My husband and I passed the time by watching movies, eating some pretty decent airline food and snacks (thanks, Lufthansa) and sleeping.  My worst flight ever was with my then 2 year old son. We had given him a smoothie before the flight and mid-air, he vomited exorcist style. He was too little to aim for the nice bag they gave you, so I tried to cup it with my hands. It was awful, it caused a chain reaction of vomiting on the plane. I’ll never forget it; we were mortified. 

    My next flight will be to Myrtle Beach in July. It’s a pretty neat area – and a very SHORT flight!

    Up in the Air: Alexa

    My favorite flight that I’ve ever been on was from Chicago to Rome on Delta Airlines. My flight to Rome went very smoothly, and I loved getting to watch in-flight movies, enjoy drinks and tasty meals, and playing games on my Nintendo Switch with my husband. To me, there’s something so fun and exciting about flying to an international destination, and being on a large aircraft is a very relaxing experience.

    My next flight will be to Phoenix, Arizona in September. My husband and I are planning on going to Scottsdale to celebrate our anniversary! I can’t wait to sit back, relax, enjoy the warm weather, eat some delicious food, go hiking, and embrace everything that Arizona has to offer. The best part is that the flight is only 4 hours long which will feel short compared to the flight from Chicago to Rome! 

    We hope you enjoyed learning more about our favorite flight experiences, and learned a few tips and tricks along the way. If you have any upcoming travel plans and need a passport, we can help! Head to our website to get the application process started, and our team of travel experts would be happy to help you obtain your travel documents in time for your trip. No matter where you plan on going, we’ll get you there.

    Let us know your most memorable flight experience in the comments!

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