Hyatt House Seattle Downtown


Hyatt House Seattle Downtown

The Hyatt House Seattle Downtown is set to open in the next few weeks.  I stopped by today to check out the progress of the construction and to scope out the property.  I was not able to go in, but here are a few observations.

Location:  This is the closest hotel to the Space Needle hands down.  While the Hyatt Place Seattle is a short walk from the Space Needle, the Hyatt House Seattle Downtown is perhaps 500 feet from the Space Needle.  You will walk out the door, cross the street, and you are at the gift shop and elevator to the top.  This is great for tourists, however it is a bit of a distance to the downtown core.  Lucky for you, the Monorail stop is also just across the street, very convenient for tourists to access shopping and Pike Place Market.

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Centurion Lounge Seattle Opening This Summer

Centurion Lounge Seattle

The Amex Centurion Lounge Seattle at SeaTac is set to open sometime this summer.  It is actually a scaled back Lounge, technically called a Studio.  Amex Platinum card holders will have free access to the Studio while other Amex cardholders (non-Platinum) will be able to enter the Studio for a fee.

UPDATE: An astute reader alerted me that for Studio locations ONLY those with Platinum or Centurion cards may enter (and may bring in family or one guest).  While at the standard Centurion Lounge other Amex card holders may purchase a day pass, day passes are not available at the Studio.

UPDATE x2: The new Studio is now open!  The first day of operation is June 30, 2015.  If you go, please send me some photos and I’ll update this article.  info at singleflyer dot com

I was recently at SeaTac on my way back from Long Beach, CA and decided to check out how the construction is going.

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Think twice before swimming with dolphins


Swimming with dolphins is portrayed as a family friendly activity.  Dolphins are social and smart animals.  Hell, they are the only animals besides humans that have sex for fun!  What’s not to like?

While observing dolphins in their natural habitat at sea from the beach or even a boat is a non-invasive way to learn about these creatures, swimming with them is not.  Particularly problematic are resorts or amusement parks that keep dolphins in captivity and allow guests to pay to swim with them.

If you have seen Blackfish, you probably already know where this is going.

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5,000 Free Alaska Airlines Miles for Self-Tag Online

Free Alaska Airlines Miles

Here is an easy way to get 5,000 free Alaska Airlines miles just by printing out your baggage tag at home.

EDIT: The promotion is over.  If you would like to sign up for an Alaska Airlines Visa card you can get 25,000 miles upon approval.  LINK Full disclosure: if you are approved I also get a bonus of 2,500 miles. You may also be able to find an offer with a $100 credit by starting to purchase a ticket at Alaska’s website and then looking for a credit card sign up link before payment.

If you have status with Alaska or American you can check a bag for free.  So even if you normally carry on a bag, this makes it worth your time to check it!  This deal is good from today (April 20, 2015) through October 20, 2015.  You get 1,000 miles for each flight, up to a total of 5,000 miles during this promo.

You can even request a free tag holder here:

Note that you DO need to have a Mileage Plan number and it must be attached to your reservation.  Here are the full details of the offer:

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New MacBook Retina Travel Size Laptop

Screen Shot 2015-04-19 at 10.16.02 PM

This weekend I picked up the brand new MacBook Retina with 12″ display, or what I call the MacBook Retina Travel Size.  This is the smallest Apple computer ever and barely larger than my iPad.  The MacBook will replace my four year old MacBook Pro 15″ that is too bulky for travel and my iPad Air that is too cumbersome to type anything of length.

There are many reviewers out there that will give you the ins and outs of the new MacBook Retina, but here are my thoughts on why it may be the perfect travel companion.

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Best Credit Cards for Single Travelers

Credit Cards

I should put a couple of big asterisks after the title: Best Credit Cards for Single Travelers*****  These are actually just the credit cards that are currently in my wallet.  And they work for me, some better than others.  Please take these with a grain of salt, I am not a financial expert.  I do not get paid if you get one of these — no referral links here.  You’ll have to just google them if you want to sign up.  And of course, if you don’t have good financial history or you don’t trust yourself with a credit card, then don’t get these.

With that said, here is what is currently in my wallet and why I find them useful.

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