Are You the Perfect Seatmate? If So, Fly First Class With Me on the Star Mega Do 3!

by on July 13, 2011 · 36 comments

in General TPG Business, star alliance

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To me, one of the most interesting parts of flying is the seatmate. There’s something unique (and strange) about sitting next to someone in a metal tube for hours and we’ve all heard (and experienced) our fair share of horror stories. In fact, on my flight to Mauritius this week, my seatmate was pretty bad- he was unaware of his surroundings and spilled his drink while getting up from his seat, he put his stinky feet way up on the seat in front of him and he coughed on me all night in his sleep.

Not the worst seatmate- at least he had socks on!

However, I’ve had a lot of really good experiences on planes too. I’ve met some very close friends on flights, which isn’t a surprise since I think I’m naturally pre-disposed towards liking fellow travelers. And now, I’m in search of another great seatmate to join me on the Star Alliance Mega Do 3.

To thank my loyal readers, I’m giving away a frequent flyer’s dream prize: A first-class ticket and hotel accommodation to come along with me on the Star Alliance Megado 3 this September!

What’s included?
The winner will spend four days and three nights with me flying first-class on all flights between North America’s Star Alliance hubs of Chicago, Montreal and Denver aboard a privately chartered Continental Boeing 737-900ER; staying at a Hyatt property in each of the cities we visit (your own room, of course); participating in all the amazing experiences that the Star Alliance is putting together for us including tours of Bombardier and Lockheed Martin; and hobnobbing with some of the savviest frequent flyers in the skies and executives from the airlines and Hyatt Hotels. Dates: September 7-10, 2011 (see full program schedule below).

Best of all, you’ll be earning elite qualifying miles and points on either Lufthansa or United (up to 9,440 EQM plus regular elite bonuses), and will receive Hyatt Diamond status valid until 2/2013- which I love and wrote about here (if you’re already a Diamond, there will be special gifts for you instead). The prize is valued at $2,084.

The prize covers the cost of the first class seat, hotel stays and any meals/coffee while we are together during the trip. Any auction purchases, souvenirs, hotel incidentals or other personal expenses are your responsibility.

What’s not included?
You must get yourself to Chicago on September 7th by 6pm for the start of the festivities and get yourself home from Denver after the event. The ARV of the trip is $2,084, so you will be responsible for paying any taxes. In the end, this trip will require a decent outlay of personal time and possibly money (if you need help using your miles to get to/from Chicago and Denver, I can certainly assist), so please only enter if you understand the commitment and really want to attend. It is going to be a great time and I promise I am a good seatmate!

I’ll also be blogging about the experience, so you will be required to sign a release form and be willing to be featured on the blog. If you have any questions about this, please feel free to comment below or email me.

Eligibility: Limited to US residents over 18 who have a valid passport. I’m sorry non-US blog readers- I love you, but this one has some legal/tax stuff I can’t get around! You can still win the other prizes, so feel free to participate.

How to Enter:
1) Follow me on Twitter and send me a Tweet on why you are a great seatmate. At the end of your Tweet include the hash-tag #greatseatmate so I can easily sort through the entries. If you don’t have a Twitter account, it only takes a minute to sign up here, but familiarize yourself with the Direct Message feature, because that’s how I’ll contact you if you win a prize.
2) “Llike” me on Facebook write on The Points Guy’s wall about why you would be the perfect seat-mate for me on our whirlwind points-earning trip.  Click here to sign-up for Facebook.

I do not sell information gleaned from either Twitter or Facebook. I simply want to increase my social media presence, which is an important thing for all bloggers.

You have from now until 11:59pm EDT on Tuesday, July 19, to enter, then I’ll choose the winner at random on Wednesday, July 20. There is a limit of 5 entries per day per Facebook and Twitter account. Please don’t SPAM!

If you want to join in the fun, but won’t be able to attend the main event, feel free to comment below on your thoughts about great seatmates or just let me know in your Tweet/Wall post that you can’t go and I’ll still consider you for some other prizes, including TPG VIP memberships and other assorted points giveaways.

If you want to have fun and write about what makes a bad seat-mate, I have several gag gifts from my recent trip to Tokyu Hands that I’ll be giving away to the people who make me laugh the most. Just hashtag your Tweet #badseatmate.

You can learn more about the Star Mega Do 3 here and find all the details plus contest rules below. I’m trying to have fun with this one, so if all goes smoothly, expect more contests and giveaways in the future.

Wednesday September 7th

6PM The United management and Hyatt management welcomes everyone at the Park Hyatt Chicago.

930PM transport to the official SMD3 hotel Hyatt Regency O’Hare

Thursday September 8th
7AM Diamond Breakfast at the Hyatt Regency O’Hare

730AM-8AM Shuttle service to Terminal 1, O’Hare.

United behind the scenes tour at O’Hare.

1045AM The world second greatest magician Al James puts on a show at the C RCC, send off Champagne party.

1130AM Boarding of Star Mega DOs 3rd charter CO1904 starts at the C gates.

12Noon Departure O’Hare. Al James comes with us to Montreal and will entertain on the plane.

3PM Arriving in Montreal. 

Transportation to Hyatt Regency Montreal

7PM Air Canada, Aeroplan program at Hyatt Regency Montreal.

Friday September 9th

7AM Diamond Breakfast at Hyatt Regency Montreal

8AM Buses depart for Mirabel airport, Bombardier tour

1130AM Buses depart for YUL, Bombardier, Air Canada and Aeroplan program

530PM Our charter CO1904 departs YUL

Official party flight!!

730PM Arrival in Denver

Transport to the Grand Hyatt in Denver

Free & Easy night

Saturday September 10th

There will be 3 experiences to choose from this Saturday. The day is hosted in cooperation with our friends at the Jason Dahl’s Scholarship Fund who commemorates the 10th anniversary of 9/11

Confirmed: Tour of United Airlines training facilities.

Auction of simulator time on 777 and A320!!

Working on: Air National guard tour and F16 rides!!

Lockheed Martin Tour.

5PM Hyatt Program at the Grand Hyatt Denver.

Close at 9PM


Contest Rules

•  Official Rules: No purchase necessary. Entries for contest start Wednesday, July 13, at 8:30am EDT and ends Tuesday, July 19 at 11:59pm EDT. Winner announced Wednesday, July 20. Eligibility requirements: Limited to US residents over 18; entries can be submitted via Twitter and Facebook Wall; five per person per day per medium; odds of winning will depend on the number of entries received; (ARV) of prize is $2,084; winner will be selected at random on July 20 and notified via the Twitter or Facebook account used to enter; an alternate will also be selected in case the original winner is not able to attend the event. Winner will be required to provide their own transportation to Chicago for the beginning of the event and home from Denver after the event close, and must have a valid passport. Winner agrees to give The Points Guy any content based on the trip for use in any medium in perpetuity. The winner will be required to sign a release and affidavit of eligibility.
•  Prize will be reported to the IRS as income to the winner on Form 1099-MISC

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

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  • Gpapadop

    This is great, thanks for the opportunity. 3 on Twitter 2 on FB wall….I am doing my best to make you laugh already:-) This was so much fun last year and would love to go again! Free Personal Finance tips if you need them you Wall Street guy:-)

  • Andy Howard

    Is it some big secret as to what DO stands for? I cannot for the life of me figure out what it means…

  • Anonymous

    Good question.. I don’t know the origins, but it basically just means organized get together.

  • Andy Howard

    Hmm, that response was more boring that I was hoping for. I’ll try to come up with something more creative to keep me entertained.

  • Than and Mary Greenwood

    Quick clarification. Do we need to submit on both FB and Twitter or is it either or. Thanks man.

  • Anonymous

    Either or both. Max 5 entries per method per day (10 max per day)

  • Adam K

    Great contest Brian. Wish I had the time, I’d love to be at this one

  • HoKo

    Ok so I feel really old saying this (especially cuz I’m only in my 20′s haha) but I don’t really know how to use Twitter. I have an account but barely use it..

    When you say “send me a tweet” does that mean I’m supposed to use the command @thepointsguy {enter text here}

    and you will receive that?

  • Anonymous

    Yep- on your main twitter page it’ll show “Whats Happening” and then a box below. Just type @thepointsguy I’m a great seatmate XYZ #greatseatmate and I’ll get it (and everyone else can read your response)

  • Michelle M

    This sounds like a lot of fun and quite creative… too bad I will be in Maui on a Mileage Run + a few days of relaxation. Best of luck to those who enter.

  • HoKo

    Gotcha, so then should I expect to see it on your “wall” or your homepage (I don’t know what it’s called). I see that some people’s responses are showing up on that page but not mine, perhaps they are showing up because they follow you and you follow them whereas you are not currently following me?

  • Copa

    “Do” came from the FlyerTalk handle of the original organizer. His handle is Catman. Haha, I get it.

  • JosephMay

    OMG!!! I will be tweeting you soon. I’ve been salivating over the Star Mega DO for a month now and trying to figure out how I could go. But, Reality set in and I had been resigned to the fact that I could never manage it financially. Its been a really tough year. That said, my birthday is September 7th and that has been top of my list by far of the ultimate birthday present. What a cool contest!

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  • Anonymous

    This is such an amazing contest! I may be new to plane porn, but I’m wildly entertaining in First Class! I hope someone with great hygiene wins:) Who ever wins this wins BIG. Great contest, Brian!

  • Bradley

    Must we sign up for twitter, or can we enter (and be contacted) by facebook only?

  • JosephMay

    Bryan, I’m a little confused. Is this a “content” contest — the best entry wins or is it a lottery where the most entries have the best chance of being selected “at random?”

  • Euan

    So to ask but what are the ‘other prizes’ us non-US readers can win?

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  • Colin

    Thanks for this opportunity Points Guy! :D

  • Nick E

    Ok, I am totally upset that all of my vacation days are spoken for this year. I am a TOTAL plane junkie, and I would LOVE to take part in this. Why doesn’t SkyTeam do a similar event??

    On the topic of seatmates, I have to post a funny experience I had flying Southwest a while back. I boarded and sat in the aisle, and at some point, two guys come on and ask to take the other two seats. It soon becomes clear that they are a couple and positively giddy with excitement over flying. They’re talking about getting drinks up in the air and how fun it is to fly and on and on. Then, one of them stops suddenly, looks at the other, and says (and I am not making this up), “Wait a minute…how is the pilot going to back the plane away from the gate with no rearview mirror?”

    I had to bite my lip to stop from laughing my face off. It was one of the most comically moronic things I’ve ever heard, but the story has given me many laughs ever since.

    I dunno if this qualifies as a “good” or “bad” seatmate story, but it always cracks me up and I thought I’d share it!

    Keep the contests coming, and good luck to all who are fortunate enough to be able to enter!!

  • Anonymous

    I’ll be giving away VIP memberships ($200 value), free award bookings and 300 Amex point vouchers

  • Anonymous

    It will be a random drawing, but you need to submit a valid “great seatmate” comment to count as an entry. The funniest/ worst comments will get runner up prizes

  • Anonymous

    The Wall is on Facebook.

  • Euan

    Thanks :)

  • trollish moron

    $1200 after tax is an ok deal but not worth it for me, (not that you’d want me to go anyway), and I don’t fly *A.

    Can’t you get a corporate sponsor to cover the $800 tax? You got $10k BE seats comped to Japan!

    Good luck in any event…

  • Phil

    can we get a trip report of the mauritius jaunt?

  • Raj B

    Wow! This is a great contest, was looking at doing the DO myself just for the Hyatt Diamond status, but I hardly ever fly CO/UA living in the big DL city.

    Do you know if anyone is planning a SkyTeam DO in the near future?

  • Gpapadop

    Is it 5 between TW & FB or 5 and 5?

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  • Buh_bound

    FYI, Copa answered the “DO” question above.

    Flyertalk member “Catman” organized the first get-together which became known as the “Catman DO”.

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