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As I prepare to leave for Europe next week, my to do list seems to be growing longer rather than shorter. I’m leaving DFW in a little more than 48 hours. I’ll be making a 2 day pit stop in Seattle to visit a client and teach at my firm’s new consultant boot camp. Then I’ll board a flight to Europe so I can board Seabourn’s “Sommelier’s Odyssey” 10 night wine cruise in Athens.
This will be my third time onboard the Odyssey (the last was the fantastic Indonesian cruise I took in 2014) and sixth time on Seabourn overall. I am a huge fan of their all-suites small ships. The all-inclusive perks (no tipping, premium open bar, five-star dining including menus by Thomas Keller) make me feel as if I’m traveling like royalty.
I shipped some of my luggage ahead using Luggage Forward (a company for whom I am an affiliate partner). Since I shaved a day off my original planned vacation time to go teach at boot camp, I’ll be arriving in Athens less than 24 hours before the ship departs. Given my bad luck with lost bags when transiting certain European hub airports (*cough* Heathrow), I was very nervous about my checked bag making it there on time. And even though I am great at packing, even I can’t do two weeks where I’m dressing for dinner nightly with only a carry-on bag.
My bag was picked up from my mom’s house in Fort Worth Texas on Monday and has already made it to Athens. It took a bit of coordination to figure out what I could live without for the next 12 days. It also required organization to write it all down so I could synchronize with the rest of my packing. Now I’ll now show up in Athens with just my small carry on bag!
Shipping luggage definitely makes me feel like I’m traveling like royalty. So does flying in a premium cabin. Right now I’m booked in Lufthansa business class. This is not my favorite way to cross the pond, but it was the most efficient way out of Seattle. I gave up my previously booked British Airways first class ticket from Dallas to make this happen. I’m still keeping an eye on that inventory out off Seattle using ExpertFlyer (another of my affiliate partners). If a seat opens up this week, I’ll make the switch. I like flying on Lufthansa butI could really use the extra sleep I know I can get onboard BA First.
I keep thinking I’m traveling like royalty, but apparently I’m not. View From the Wing mentioned that Princess Kate flies regular British Airways Club Europe, not the fancy private jet I’d imagined. That got me wondering what else I didn’t know about traveling like royalty. It turns out its not nearly as posh as I thought. They still navigate immigration and manage their luggage (although I wouldn’t mind my own set of monogrammed Louis Vuitton).
It seems that the best thing about traveling like royalty is bringing your own booze along. Its a good thing my mother just gifted me my grandfather’s old portable bar bag. Not only is it monogrammed with is initials, but it has a nice vodka martini scent when you open it. It reminds me of time spent watching the news with him as a child. I won’t need to pack it yet though… the open bar (including full bottle service in my suite) on Seabourn will have me set for this trip.
Forget traveling like royalty. I’m traveling better than royalty.