Quick photo review of Killeen-Fort Hood Regional Airport in Texas GRK

Small airport but easy to get to and simple parking layout. Signage could be improved but you’ll figure it out.

Entrance drive.


First floor entrance.

Main hall.

Main check-in area on first floor. Spotless and new.

As you can see not a ton of flights but better than you’d expect. The only odd thing about this airport for me is that they don’t allow passengers through security until just before boarding times. So I arrived about 8:30am for a flight boarding at 10:05am but couldn’t go through security until 9am. This would be Ok but I was trying to get some work done on my laptop so I set up in the cafeteria type area and then had to shut down to go through security.

Cafeteria style area outside security. Like a bullpen. Airside gate area was about as big but without tables.

Old style jet bridges altough the longer gate 1 has a newer glass jet bridge.

Major feature for most food choices here in and out of security.

View from tarmac.


Dallas Intercontinental Hotel snapshot

Room 1515 on club floor at the IHG Intercontinental in Addison Texas in photos.

One bedroom 1 1\2 bath two level suite. Very nice.


American Airlines Playing Games With Award Availability on Non-Stop Flights?

This isn’t an exact science but my theory says that AA plays games with award space to keep it’s loyal customers from booking the best non-stop routes with miles. So say you want to book an award flight from the USA to Europe. We’ll pick DFW to Madrid for an example. So I’m searching 11 months out for my example:


I’m thrilled because I found an actual non-BA flight with awards space for 2 passengers!


Now this is not bad but I don’t actually live in DFW so I’m willing to stage from my non-hub to other hubs like say Chicago ORD. Since I’d rather not have an extra leg I just want the ORD-MAD flight. It’s available as part of this booking, right?

Think again here is the ORD-MAD non-BA selections for this same date:


Gosh that’s weird. Why isn’t that same non-stop Iberia flight available? Oh well it looks like I can just stage to JFK and pick one of the TWO Iberia flights for that date. Not as close for me and I’ll likely need to trek from LGA to JFK but it should work OK. At least I can save that extra leg from ORD, right?


Well think again. I’d have to fly to Boston I guess. Boston is not an easy connection for me but hey at least that one is available. Maybe I managed to corner AA enough into Boston? To me this is silly. It’s either a poor system that doesn’t work well OR….done intentionally to keep you from booking the best flights on awards for some odd reason.



$99 flights to Europe from USA Sept 2017 to about August 2018

WOW air


You’ll have to watch the nickle and dime but cheap flights from many US cities to Europe from only $99 one-way.
Also works in reverse (from about €124 one-way).

Pittsburgh, Boston,San Francisco,Chicago,Washington DC,Miami,New York,Detroit,St. Louis,Cleveland,Cincinnati,Los Angeles but check schedules as your airport choice could vary. The $99 lowest fare dates are very limited but some are out there.

Fly to (depending on airports used):
Brussels, Belgium
Reykjavik, Iceland
Copenhagen, Denmark
Dublin, Ireland
Milan, Italy
London, UK
Frankfurt/Berlin, Germany
Tel Aviv, Israel

Book at: Wow Air
Availability from September 2017 to August 2018

Save the comments about how bad low cost carriers are, etc. Wow is no free lunch or joyride but it can get you to Europe for $99 plus add on fees. It doesn’t get much cheaper for that. Think Greyhound not Emirates First people.


Delta Wants Elites to “USE” Miles Up

In a weak effort to try and hold onto elites… Delta is encouraging them to use up their Sky Pesos on upgrades. Actually the idea isn’t that bad on the surface. I actually find it weird that airlines don’t offer elites first pick up paying for upgrades. In my experience it seems random.

They don’t want you to “save them forever” although that’s what you need to do with Delta Sky Pesos to earn any decent reward travel. It’s a fun game to see if you can save them faster than Delta can devalue them. They have devalued award ticket redemption’s so much that all they have left are moves like this to try and hold onto elites that are hub captive in places like MSP or SLC.  It might work for some that don’t care about the value of said miles or have so many they’ll never use them all and don’t care about award redemption’s.



See the USA Today article link below for more about this story if you can stand reading USA Today for a couple minutes. It might even be non-Fakenews which can be hard to find in that free news flyer we often find on hotel hallway floors 🙂




Hilton President Hotel Kansas City Diamond Review


The Hilton President Kansas City is a classic hotel that was built in 1926 during a boom in Kansas City downtown roaring 20’s construction. It was a popular hotel in Kansas City during the Kansas City Mob days, Blues icons played at the famous Drum Room lounge while celebrities watched. As downtown KC struggled through the 1970’s so did the hotel. It finally closed in 1980 and sat vacant until a local business investor group spent over $45 million to restore it and open it as the current Hilton President in 2005. It saw success as downtown KC has gone through a revival. It now sits between the theaters, convention center, Sprint center and KC Power and Light entertainment district. After being open since 2005 it was due for a refresh so they recently spent millions more to update the rooms, add more marble, etc. A lot of historic hotels are cool but this one doesn’t suffer from being outdated. The rooms are fresh and updated. IMG_20170615_165015574IMG_20170615_170317552

The Drum Room Lounge is mostly original. The restaurant is good and a great place for a pre-concert or pre-theater dinner. IMG_20170615_165332449

As a Hilton Diamond I was upgraded on arrival to a corner room overlooking the Power and Light District. The hotel was fairly slow which I’m sure helped. IMG_20170615_165322865_HDRIMG_20170615_165607061IMG_20170615_165613142IMG_20170616_072052271

The only negative thing I can say about this hotel is the motion sensing Verdant thermostat. There is a hack to override it but it’s not an easy hack. The hotel is guilty of not having this set properly for the overnight hours. This is something can be set by the main system. It did go off in the middle of the night and made the room too warm on a hot Summer evening. IMG_20170615_165337663

View of Power and Light District and Sprint Center.IMG_20170615_220143177IMG_20170615_165345906

View to the South of the Kauffman CenterIMG_20170615_215635004IMG_20170615_215541046

Overall it was a nice stay. As a Hilton Diamond they do offer free breakfast in the restaurant. There is also a Starbucks coffee stand in the lobby. Great service from the front desk, restaurant and valet parking staff. I will return here even as a local the next time I need to stay downtown. This AAA four diamond hotel is well worth the visit.