With our Xiamen Air flight cancelled I had to scramble to find a new flight. As we had already booked non-refundable hotel nights as well as tickets to Tokyo Disney and the Studio Ghibli Museum we needed to ensure that we were in Japan by September 3rd at the latest. At the time flights directly to Japan were close to $800 a person, which is almost twice what we were paying for our initial flights on Xiamen Airlines.
So I took to google flights and starting messing around with options. Given that flights to China have been extremely cheap and it is my wife’s dream to visit all the Disney Parks in the world, Shanghai seemed like a logical place to try to find an alternative route. After some research I was able to find a route from Seattle to Shanghai then onward to Tokyo and back to Seattle for $625.
Upgrade to First Class
I was lucky enough to get a promotional upgrade from American Airlines to Gold Status. This game with 8 500-mile upgrades. This flight was the first SEA – LAX flight of the day and happened to be extremely empty. As soon as checked in for the flight American Airlines notified me that I was going to be upgraded to First Class. As exciting as this sounds, as the flight was on a Embraer-175 there wasn’t many perks to be hand but the bigger seat was greatly appreciated.
The Embraer-175 are typically regional Jets that fly shorter flights typically less than two hours. First Class seats on this plane are recliner seats that have 37 Inches of Pitch and 19.9 inches wide. The seats in this plane were extremely comfortable; as someone who is rarely able to sleep on a plane for more than a few minutes, I passed out shortly after take off and did not wake up until we touched down in Los Angeles. While I can’t say that this flight would not have shelled out the extra $200 to sit in first class for the flight I did appreciate the Extra Sleep.
As both Stephanie and I feel sleep almost immediately, I cannot speak too much about the Service but what I experienced was very good. As we boarded we were greeted by the smiling flight attendant, our seats had a blanket and a small pillow waiting for us, and we were immediately asked by the flight attended whether we wanted a pre-departure drink. However, given that we passed out immediately on take off and did not wake up until we got to LA i am going to assume it was an extremely smooth ride.