Error Fare – Toronto – Dublin $227 USD 


Go to skyscanner.ca to book a super cheap error fare between Toronto and Dublin for $290 CAD or approx $230 USD with Westjet. There are stops in LHR and in Montreal on the way back so not the most direct route but is about $300 CAD cheaper than normal prices. 


Various dates are working in Feb so make your way to Ireland and try and catch a six nations game while you are there it won’t disappoint. As it’s an error hold off making other arrangements until the airline confirms the ticket. 

Slainte!!

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Error Fare – New York – Dubai Business Class $685


Another day another Business Class Error Fare. There is lots of availability in the new year on Ukraine International Airlines between New York and Dubai for under $700. Normal fares are in the $2,000 range with this airline. 


There is a short layover in Kiev on each leg but $700 for a business class ticket for this distance is pretty great. 

As always with these fares hold off booking any hotels until the fare is fully confirmed. 

400 Easy Alaska Miles – Complete one Survey


There are numerous survey websites out there which will offer you miles for signing up and completing surveys on behalf of their clients.

The latest one is called the Opinion Terminal and they have linked up with Alaska to offer a sign up bonus of 400 miles to join. 


For once it was a pretty pain free experience and I qualified for the third survey they took my details for. A nice touch is they give you 5 miles for the ones you don’t qualify for. The survey itself took about 12 minutes to complete and wasn’t too frustrating. 

The best bit is the miles have already credited to my account in less than 24 hours. They have also sent a mail about a 150,000 mile giveaway in the month of August. 

Morale of the story is if you have 20 minutes it’s and easy way to pick up some miles. Alaska Miles are some of the most useful out there in my opinion as they have some great partners and redemption rates. 

For more on redeeming Alaska miles check out the below article from last month.

https://dealtraveller.com/2017/06/26/use-your-miles-wisely-and-travel-the-world-with-alaska-airlines-partners/

Round the World on Deals and Miles. Part one booked – Thai First Class


More and more people are collecting airmiles than ever before, through a variety of means that mainly don’t even involve flying anymore. Airlines are making billions of dollars selling their miles to affiliate programs such as credit card companies, car rental agencies, hotel groups – you name it and there is probably a way to earn some miles there. This has led the airlines themselves to devalue their programs and make redeeming those miles more expensive. That’s nice of them eh. 

The next to go is United who will change their awards system in October. No doubt some of the changes are already being applied reducing saver availability etc. What can be guaranteed is the amount of miles needed for what you want to do will no doubt be higher.

There is one great redemption that still remains out there and it’s one I have recently booked. By booking through United Mileage Plus you can fly from Asia to Australia/New Zealand for an extremely low 40,000 miles in Thai first class or 30,000 in business. To put that in perspective a first class seat for the hour hope between New York to Boston on a 737 can run you 50,000 miles on United. 

I have always wanted to do a round the world trip on miles and deals and this was a redemption too good to turn down before the price almost doubles. So for 40,000 miles and $67 I will travel from Hong Kong via Bangkok to Sydney in January. Both legs will be in the nose of a 747-800 and there will be a layover of 3 hours to experience the first class lounge in Bangkok. The retail price is currently nudging $3,000 for the same flight. 


This will no doubt be the highlight of the trip, airplane wise at least and the rest is still to be booked. But that’s half the fun, unfortunately I missed the crazy Qatar business fares earlier this week, but something will come up and you can read about it here when it does.

Norwegian Airlines – Stewart Airport to Europe for $200 (Review)


Norwegian Airlines have been offering low cost transatlantic flights from Stewart Airport in Newburgh New York since the middle of June. Despite a few set backs the services are up and running to Dublin, Belfast, Shannon and Edinburgh using a mixture of brand new 737 Max and 737 – 800 aircraft. Over the past week the Deal Traveller has tried out both aircraft flying to Edinburgh on the Max and back from Dublin on the older 800 series. 

Getting to and from Stewart:


Stewart is located about 60 miles north of Manhattan. Outside of driving there are three ways of getting to and from the airport. 1.) There is a bus service from Port Authority Bus Station which costs $20 each way 2.) Metro North Hudson line between Grand Central and Beacon and a taxi from there. 3.) Metro North Port Jervis Line between Hoboken and Salisbury Mills and a taxi. 

The buses leave Manhattan well in advance of flight departures so I opted to take the train to Beacon for my outbound to Edinburgh. This cost $16.50 and took about an hour and forty minutes it was then a $30 taxi ride from Beacon to the airport. (The below number is the local cab firm in Beacon) The view along the Hudson is excellent when taking this route and arriving after the buses meant check in was  clear once I got there.


When I arrived back the experience taking the bus was seamless. It left about 30 minutes after the flight landed and got to Manhattan in under 90 minutes. Having already cleared immigration in Dublin arrival was super smooth and probably as good a commute as you can have from any of the NYC area airports. 

The Airport:


Stewart is a tiny airport with very little to do or look at. I would not recommend arriving with hours to spare. However on the brightside security moved very quickly and door to gate was probably 15/20 minutes. Pretty cool for an international flight. There is a small cafe and duty free shop but nothing else. 

However on arrival this is excellent gate to sidewalk was literally 90 seconds a huge benefit. 

The Aircraft:


My outbound flight to Edinburgh was on the brand new 737-Max. While it was cool to fly on an obviously brand new plane a 737 is still a 737 and there aren’t many differences to report. I chose to book seat 2F based off the original seat plan which was published when the flights went on sale. At that time there was not going to be a row 1 on the right hand side of the cabin. In the meantime they squeezed an extra row in and the lady in front of me looked very comfortable in 1F which had a lot of extra leg room. If row 1 is available it is worth paying th extra. There is no entertainment on board and all food and drinks cost extra. 


On the return from Dublin they operated the older 737-800 aircraft as it doesn’t have the range it means they cannot fly with full capacity so I got myself a row of three at the back of the aircraft for the daytime flight the allowed me stretch out a bit and sleep for most of the daytime flight. The captain announced a couple of hours in that we had a very clear view of Greenland and it was great to see and take some photos of for the first time. Unfortunately the ground staff got a little exited about boarding and left everyone wait in the tunnel for over 20 minutes which was unnecessary and very Ryanair like. 


Conclusion:

Crossing the Atlantic has always been exciting for me. Going to the big airports, travelling on wide bodied planes are part of the experience. While the food, drinks and entertainment in economy on the larger airlines has generally gone downhill over the years, I still find it a bit of an adventure. 

What Norwegian are offering kind of takes away from the romance of traveling. Sure this trip cost me under $200 in peak July for a round trip to Europe, absolutely unheard of even a year ago. But unless the savings are similar I don’t think I would use them on a regular basis. 

The ability to buy one way tickets is a bonus and a seamless arrival process was great but all in all it was a little disappointing. Bring back the 747….

$3 Lunches around the country with MealPal

If you are based in NYC, Boston, Brooklyn, Chicago, London, Miami, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Sydney, Toronto or Washington D.C. and find yourself constantly rushing out for lunch a few times a week this may be the app for you.

Mealpal has hundreds of partners in each city which offer a daily meal for subscribers. Each evening, the following days menu is released and you can pre-order your lunch for a time slot of your choice. Meaning you can collect your lunch without waiting in line and it’s also pre-paid.

They have two plans which offer either 12 or 20 meals in a 30 day period for between $6 and $6.50 a time. I have just signed up for the 12 meal option for $84. This week it comes with an amazon voucher for $50 included so that reduces the price to under $3 a meal for the first month.


As you can see above there are lots of options in Manhattan and I’m quite excited to get started as lunch usually costs me an average of $10 in Midtown.

For the next few days there is a refer a friend promotion where both people receive the voucher. Send me your email if you want a referral.

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Ireland to Vancouver €245 return Error Fare 


Amazing value this morning between Ireland and Vancouver. Fares that are usually as high as €1,000 can be booked from €245 from Shannon and Dublin. Flights are with Air Canada. 


These can be booked on momondo.ie and are through agent eflights.ie. Play around with dates and routes and see what fits but availability is in September and October. 

Book quick as they won’t last long. Happy travels. As it’s likely an error hold off booking any hotels etc until ticketed. 

New York Restaurant Week 2017 – Participating Michelin-Starred Restaurants. 

Restaurant week runs again in NYC from Jan 22nd – Feb 9th. They have just released the list and many of the below Michelin Starred restaurants are again available. Have a read and get those bookings in ahead of the crowd.

http://www.nycgo.com/restaurant-week

Once again restaurant week is around the corner in NYC running from July 24th to August 18th. There are over 380 restaurants covering pretty much every cuisine you can imagine offering a $29 set lunch or $42 dinner menu. While this is before gratuity/tax and without drinks it can offer very good value in some of the city’s best restaurants including several with Michelin stars.

Below is a list of most of the one star restaurants available this year and sample menus where available. Some are only available for lunch and none for Saturday night dinner, either way it’s a great opportunity to try some restaurants who have received a star from the worlds most famous critic.

Junoon – Monday to Friday and Sunday Lunch and Dinner.

27 W 24th St, New York, NY 10010

Fine Indian Cuisine.

Home Page


Tulsi – Monday to Friday Lunch and Dinner. Sunday Dinner.

211 E 46th St, New York, NY 10017

Fine Indian Cuisine.

Wallse – Monday to Friday Dinner.

344 W 11th St, New York, NY 10014

Modern Austrian.

https://www.kurtgutenbrunner.com/

Casa Mono – Monday to Friday Lunch.

52 Irving Pl, New York, NY 10003

Upscale Spanish Dishes.

Home

Ai Fiori – Monday to Friday Lunch.

400 5th Ave #2, New York, NY 10018

Modern French and Italian Riviera Cuisine.

http://aifiorinyc.com/

Cafe Boulud – Monday to Friday Lunch.

20 E 76th St, New York, NY 10021

High End French.

An Upper East Side Neighborhood Gem

The Breslin – Monday to Friday and Sunday Lunch. 

16 W29th St, New York, NY 10001

High-end British Gastropub.

https://www.thebreslin.com/

Aureole – Monday to Friday Lunch and Dinner.

135 W 42nd St, New York, NY 10036

Progressive American.

http://www.charliepalmer.com/aureole-new-york/

The Gotham Bar and grill have not as yet published a sample menu but they are available for lunch bookings Monday thru Friday.

https://gothambarandgrill.com

Check out the full list of restaurants here and use the booking tool to let the restaurant know you want the Restaurant Week menus.          http://www.nycgo.com/restaurant-week

While not exactly a travel deal, fine dining goes hand in hand with travel and these restaurants offer very good value during restaurant week. The Deal Traveller will review one or two before the end of August.

Error Fare Success Story- Europe and Brazil for $210 


An Error Fare is when an airline or travel agency booking system offers lower fares than usual due to some sort of system glitch. They occasionally leave off certain taxes, fees or surcharges which can dramatically reduce a ticket price. 

While in the grand scheme of things very rare,it is not surprising as many of these booking systems are now very old and would require huge investment to renew. Meaning the airlines tend to let these go through as leakage and would in most cases honor any bookings made. 
When an Error Fare pops up there tends to be an online frenzy as people from all over the world try to make dates work and book at the same time, hoping the airline doesn’t find and fix the problem before they book. Usually they don’t fit into people’s travel plans and are not from/or to convenient airports. However with every rule comes and exception. 

Last year I knew early on that I would need to be in Europe and Brazil for separate weddings within a week of each other. Living in New York this was going to be a stretch financially based on “normal airfares”. However along came an Error Fare to my rescue. 

One morning in March twitter exploded with a TAP Fare starting in the US and ending in Brazil with a stop in Lisbon. It was perfect and I jumped on it ending up with two flights New York to Lisbon on September 8th and Lisbon to São Paulo the following week on September 12th. The fare cost $210 and I even could have added extra legs to it in Europe and onward in Brazil had I not panic bought as soon as I saw it. To put in perspective the same flights with TAP this year are well over $1,000. 
Booking the main flights so early gave me ample time to work on my itinerary within Europe and in South America. Using a mixture of discount airlines and Air miles this turned into a pretty epic trip taking in 8 countries and using 10 different airlines. (More on that to come) In addition TAP use the bid upgrade system allowing you to bid for an upgrade to business class. I entered the minimum of $325 for the JFK-LIS leg and it was accepted. So the trip started in style.

When an Error Fare pops up and it fits travel plans book it. The worst that can happen is the airline cancels it. So maybe hold off on hotels etc. until a period of time has passed and your ticket is confirmed. But if you are flexible and a little adventurous book it and come up with a plan. I missed an Air Philippines fare to Cebu round trip a few months back. It was under $200 and I pulled out at the last minute. While Cebu is a little out of the way, it is A) probably worth a visit and B) has cheap connections to all over Asia. 

It is all the more satisfying looking out over Rio de Janeiro and Lisbon knowing you got there for half nothing.