Yesterday, we managed to get several hours behind in our plans, but eventually headed to Abu Dhabi in the afternoon, primarily to see the Sheikh Zayed Mosque – which turned out to be absolutely breathtaking. Although we didn’t get there until around sunset, it ended up being the perfect time, and I’m glad we got there when we did.
Day 1 was full of flashing lights, glamour, malls, and consumerism – but Day 2 was a complete 180-degree turn from the glitz and glam with stops at the beach, the Dubai Museum, the fish market, more rain!, Bastakiya, Bur Dubai Souk (a marketplace), and some awesome dinner. Despite all the new and shiny, it’s very apparent how much history lives in this city.
Thursday was our first full day in Dubai, and it involved a lot of walking. The main airport, the air show (a moot point, since it was cancelled), two giant malls, the Burj Khalifa, dinner, and then drinks – all part of the fun in this amazing place – until the end when I nearly began to fall asleep standing up. Jetlag’s…jetlag.
Ever wanted to sit in first class but didn’t want to pay a usually-unusually-high-priced fee to sit in the big chair? American just launched a trial program called “Plusgrade” to allow you to bid on upgrading to the next highest cabin, potentially at less cost than if you just outright paid.
When you travel somewhere new, there are often a lot of preconceived notions about what it’s going to be like. We all have them, and sometimes we’re right.
But not today.
Everything I thought Dubai was going to be like, I was generally wrong. I expected lights and I expected “ooh and ahh,” but I didn’t expect my mind to be blown — and we’ve only been here for 12 hours.
Today, I’m heading to Dubai for the tail end of #DXB13 – the Dubai Air Show. Having never been to Dubai, I’m pretty excited to be visiting this ever-growing metropolis – but until I did some research, I didn’t know much about it.
Dubai one of seven emirates in the United Arab Emirates, and is home to approximately 2.1 million, nearly double what it was just in 2005, doubling again from 1995. As such, the city’s landscape has grown tremendously, becoming a city that is well known for its tall skyscrapers, including the tallest man-made structure in the world, the Burj Khalifa.
IHG just kicked off their 48-hour sale with select hotel redemptions up to 75% off, meaning participating hotels have award redemptions at 5,000 IHG Rewards Club points per night compared to (for example) 20,000 points per night, or 37,500 compared to 50,000.
The 48-hour sale doesn’t mean you have to stay in a hotel in the next two days, but the deal is valid for bookings November 20 through December 20, 2013.
Just recently, Southwest Airlines became the latest airline to join TSA PreCheck, the program that – after paying a fee, passing a background check and an interview – allows you to go through a shorter line without having to take off your shoes, take out your liquids, and doesn’t require you to go through advanced imaging scanners (aka “nude-o-scopes”).
Next week, I’m flying to Dubai, a city of wonders in the Middle East. Primarily there for the Dubai Air Show, there’s a metric ton of other things that I know I can’t go without seeing and experiencing. Check out the top ten things I can’t wait to do next week when I’m in Dubai with Matt: