SD I -July 14, Venice to Athens

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#1
1,679 Posts
Joined Mar 2005
Just booked the hotel in Venice, but really struggling with the split ticket airfare - when boarding SD in Venice and getting kicked off in Athens. My preferred FF airline Delta no longer flies non stop Athens back to any where in the US except JFK and we can't make our connection home without spending a night somewhere. So from the real experts -- any suggestions on major city routings from the East Coast (we have to connect to get anywhere from home).

thanks

FT
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#2
Cincinnati Ohio & SW Florida
834 Posts
Joined Jul 2008
T, sorry, but I've got nothin'. Have you considered using something like http://www.expertflyer.com/ for at least research? Are you using points? If so, you'll find it helpful.

If you're paying, I'm afraid you just need to do hard core research and work about it (you know abou these things, right, dear?) JFK is the airport I love to hate, so I'd avoid it except to quickly hop on another flight even if it goes to Newark, and from there to Charlotte.

Or, of course, my personal choice would be to stretch out your lovely trip and spend a couple of days in the Big Apple taking in some shows and pretending you're of the famous ilk. Then fly home, however you can get there and face the music. . .REALity that is. Ugh. Crawl in bed and wait for the depression to dissapate. It will. Eventually.

Seriously, you have problems. We're in the dreaded flyover states. You, are the other hand, are in the drop a granade over it state. Just joking. You know my meaning.

REagardlessl of how you get home, it will be well worth it. What a fabulous trip. We've done similar trips twice, but the most memorable was on the now defunct Renassiance line, and the smallest of the ships in which we drank ouzo, poured by the captain, as we were transiting the corinith canal. We could pactically touch it. A thrilling moment for sure. The rest of our adventure was fbv as well!

So, all that was quite helpful, right?
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#3
Valley of the Sun, Arizona
6,983 Posts
Joined Mar 2004
FT, have you considered Athens to London to ATL? A stayover at LHR or LGW can be done nicely. The Biz flights London to ATL have been nice of late. Jusst a suggestion. We had a looooonnng trip home from VCE via FRA and would not like to repeat that. Last time in Athens, flew to Rome then home. Any way you cut it, it will cost a bunch this year.
#4
1,679 Posts
Joined Mar 2005
Thanks Jim & Teresa -guess its good we have some time to work on flight arrangements. I have never taken 3 wks off for holidays before - but it looks like this trip will get pretty close to it, now that ZQ Vol wants to visit a monastery on an island outside Athens . . .

Going through London seems one of the best options since I hate CDG with a passion - with spending a night in NYC the other. Unless Athens calms down a great deal, I'm not real keen right now about spending an extra night in Athens.

Oh, well, lucky to be able to afford this problem. Using points in Venice for the Hotel Danieli. looks like we can take a water taxi straight from the hotel to SD. and in Venice, that's an easy option.

FT
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#5
Wake Forest, NC
1,016 Posts
Joined Jan 2007
FT, there's also a direct flight from London to Raleigh Durham on American. Last summer we flew Stockholm to London on British Air, spent the night at the airport Hilton on points, then flew direct from London to RDU. The fl;ight gets in about 3:00 in the afternoon and going through customs there was a breeze! Good luck on finding a good flight!
#6
16,548 Posts
Joined Mar 2005
I'm throwing the monkey wrench in here. Don't want to connect through London because of the Olympics. I guess if we are just connecting it won't be too bad.
#7
Valley of the Sun, Arizona
6,983 Posts
Joined Mar 2004
Originally posted by zqvol
I'm throwing the monkey wrench in here. Don't want to connect through London because of the Olympics. I guess if we are just connecting it won't be too bad.
It wont be bad as long as you dont try to get into the city. If you use LGW, the Meridien at the airport is very nice. As others have said, the Hilton (walk to terminal 4) is also a good bet. These are good problems to have. Have to agree that JFK is to be avoided if possible.
#8
551 Posts
Joined Feb 2007
Also throwing in my .02 here, FT.... Airlines sure don't make it easy to travel these days, do they?

I'm a big fan of connecting in Europe versus in the States because, at that point, you are already 'across the pond' and there. Of course, we fly from the West coast so the closer to our destination, the better!

I also agree with connecting in London - we've done it many times - and there are usually backup flight options and hotels to stay at right at the airport should you get delayed. As others have mentioned, the Hilton at Heathrow is fine.

When we took our '10 SDI Athens-Dubrovnik cruise we flew LAX-Frankfurt-Athens and it only helped to re-affirm my personal DISlike for connecting in Frankfurt! And even though some don't like Heathrow it is (IMO) a much better option to connecting in JFK, Frankfurt, or CDG (Paris).
#9
Valley of the Sun, Arizona
6,983 Posts
Joined Mar 2004
Have to agree with you as we have the same aversion to FRA. A bit like STT on Steroids. Got ahead of myself in my prior post. The Hilton referred to is at LHR. the Meridien at LGW. Both have been nice stopovers in the past.
#10
1,679 Posts
Joined Mar 2005
Munich is much better than FRA for connecting. if you are going to fly Lufthansa - go through Munich. And if I have to connect on the continent AMS is pretty easy -- busy, but very efficient. And not a bad place for a layover either. Nice shopping at LGW also. Oh well, something to work on . . I actually forgot about the Olympics driving airfare this year. Ugg . . .

thanks for the suggestions. Guess I may be upgrading to AMEX Platinum to get that 2nd business class ticket since Delta on FF miles is looking less and less likely

Stay tuned . . as we get closer, postings will begin

FT
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#11
551 Posts
Joined Feb 2007
Originally posted by frequent traveler
..if you are going to fly Lufthansa - go through Munich.
Been through Munich too... this '10 LAX-Frankfurt-Athens route was a Business class 'special discount' fare that Lufthansa was offering at the time.

Think I'm done with Lufthansa though.... the last time we flew their Business class, which we usually opt for since it is such a long flight, neither one of us could sleep (overnight flight). It was nice having the extra leg room, but their seats reclined at a such a weird angle (not flat) that it was hard not to end up in a heap on the floor once you started dozing off!

Sounds like you have some options in mind, FT. Will be interested to hear what you end up booking.
#12
52 Posts
Joined Jun 2005
Have you tried non stop Athens to Toronto, Canada, or Montreal, Canada? I live in the US, but find flying business class on a charter flight out of Toronto, non stop to Venice or Athens much cheaper and more convenient. You can get your connecting flight from Toronto to your home town with no problems.
#14
1,679 Posts
Joined Mar 2005
Made the final payment today. Its official. Heading to Venice, Croatia, and the Corinth Canal for 14 nights on SD I. Almost 3 full weeks out of the office - but the Swedes and HQ will be on holiday too!
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#15
Orlando, Florida, USA
1,180 Posts
Joined May 2000
FT, I see that you are going to Kotor. Don't recall whether or not I mentioned that to you but that is an absolutely beautiful approach. I know you won't need any encouragement to be up early that morning but you won't want to miss it. Have a great trip and be certain to tell the jewelers in Kusadasi and Santorini that I don't miss them one iota.
#16
1,679 Posts
Joined Mar 2005
Originally posted by ctbjr1309
FT, I see that you are going to Kotor. Don't recall whether or not I mentioned that to you but that is an absolutely beautiful approach. I know you won't need any encouragement to be up early that morning but you won't want to miss it. Have a great trip and be certain to tell the jewelers in Kusadasi and Santorini that I don't miss them one iota.
I will make sure to not stay up late at TOY bar the night before Kotor. Thanks for the advice . . . And as for the jewelers in Kusadasi and Santorini - I don't even know where they are located - don't think we stopped in one. Now leather is a different story but even I can only buy so much luggage, purses, shoes, etc.

FT
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#18
665 Posts
Joined Dec 2004
Sounds like a wonderful trip!! We're doing RT Rome and Rome-Nice in October and seriously looking at Istanbul-Venice next summer.

CTBJR is right -- the sail into Kotor is not to be missed! When we did it in 2010, the captain said it was the most like the Norwegian fjords he had found in Europe. In fact, one of the pictures on the website used to be sailing around the little island with the church on it (can't remember the name). It is absolutely beautiful!!

Good luck with the air! Got to use miles for the October trip -- getting there isn't bad, but coming home is a bit of a bear -- and all but one flight on Lufthansa. Oh, well -- at least the price was right!

Vandrefalk
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#19
16,548 Posts
Joined Mar 2005
Originally posted by vandrefalk
Sounds like a wonderful trip!! We're doing RT Rome and Rome-Nice in October and seriously looking at Istanbul-Venice next summer.

CTBJR is right -- the sail into Kotor is not to be missed! When we did it in 2010, the captain said it was the most like the Norwegian fjords he had found in Europe. In fact, one of the pictures on the website used to be sailing around the little island with the church on it (can't remember the name). It is absolutely beautiful!!

Good luck with the air! Got to use miles for the October trip -- getting there isn't bad, but coming home is a bit of a bear -- and all but one flight on Lufthansa. Oh, well -- at least the price was right!

Vandrefalk

FT got air, and that is all I want to know.
#20
1,679 Posts
Joined Mar 2005
and the price wasn't right . . . but to make decent connections and not spend 35 hrs getting home, FF miles to Venice and back from Athens didn't work this summer. Oh, well, paying for tickets this summer means next year's will likely be FF . . .

FT
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