How TPG Staffers Spent Their Fourth of July Holiday
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According to data from the farecasting app Hopper, more than 12 million travelers were scheduled to fly this holiday weekend — and that doesn’t even include those hitting the road. The American Automobile Association (AAA) was expecting some 41.4 million drivers to pile into cars for an Independence Day getaway.
It should come as no surprise, then, that the men and women here at TPG who work to bring you the latest travel news, best deals, and juiciest credit card offers hit the road (err, the skies) as well. Hey, it’s part of the job right? From New York’s Coney Island to Rhode Island, here’s where we rang in the Fourth this year.
Zach Honig, Editor-at-Large: “I’m at my favorite spot south of the border, Zihuatanejo, on Mexico’s Pacific Coast. It’s a bit tricky to get to, but far more laid back than Cancun, with an authentic vibe, the friendliest locals, incredible beaches and exceptional seafood. I flew United to Mexico City with my family and some friends, and we all got upgraded thanks to my 1K status and upgrade certificates from a friend, before continuing on to ZIH on an Aeromar turboprop. While Independence Day is celebrated in September here, our hotel held a reception with some cake to celebrate the Fourth of July.”
British Virgin Islands
Katherine Fan, Senior Travel Features Reporter: “I’m currently sailing in the British Virgin Islands with several other friends. We spent the Fourth of July in White Bay on the island of Jost Van Dyke, celebrating with delicious rum drinks, lovely sun, fellow merrymakers and delicious lobster. I paid my share of the catamaran with my new Hilton Honors Aspire Card from American Express in order to hit my required spend, and used Southwest points to get myself (and my lucky companion pass holder), to Puerto Rico from Austin. The trip was last minute, so flights would have cost me and my companion $1300+ combined for the one-way from Austin to San Juan, Puerto Rico! To thank me for the free flight, my companion bought my ticket from Puerto Rico to Tortola, the port from which we sailed. So I guess you could say this trip more or less paid for itself in some ways … Or at least that’s what I choose to tell myself!” (Follow Katherine’s adventures @katherinefangirling on Instagram.)
Benet Wilson, Credit Cards Editor: “Hello from a corner in Winslow, Arizona! Happy 4th of July and take it easy!!”
Coney Island, New York
Caitlin Riddell, Social Media Lead: “I went to Coney Island yesterday with Kelli Hanner (office manager) and Jonathan Eves (Paid media associate) to check out the famous Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating contest. It cost us one subway swipe and was only 45 mins from Manhattan. With the American Express® Gold Card we got 4x points on our hot dog purchases, but sadly the hot dog hats didn’t code as food.”
Providence, Rhode Island
Jack Witty, Director of Business Analytics: “We took Amtrak from Penn Station to Providence … Avoided that Manhattan traffic leaving the city to get to the airports!”
Katie & JT Genter, Senior Points and Miles Writers: “JT and I are at RoboCup 2019 in Sydney, Australia participating in an autonomous robot soccer competition. JT is on the Standard Platform League organizing committee and I’m an executive member (and I still participate with the Standard Platform League team from my Ph.D., UT Austin Villa).”
Buenos Aires, Argentina
Benji Stawski, Intern: “I celebrated 4th of July with an impromptu trip to Buenos Aires thanks to some last minute United Polaris award availability (one way biz class booked for 55k Amex points transferred to Aeroplan).”
St. Pete Beach, Florida
Melanie Lieberman, Travel Editor: “We got here because I convinced my friend Tay that she needed the Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus Credit Card (during the companion pass limited-time offer earlier this year.) So she did, and here we are in St Pete! We flew from Bradley to Tampa on points and she brought me for “free” as a thank you so we could spend the Fourth on the beach.”
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