Two Favorite Trips of 2017 – Complete Opposites!

Written by Charlie

Out of all my trips of 2017, here are my two favorite trips of 2017! The actual travel methods were complete opposites but they were still the best!

This year, I have again been able to have some great travels, even though a majority of them have been just between the US and Europe. But, my two favorite ones this year have a theme with them – they were travels with our kids.

Two Favorite Trips of 2017

Trips with the Kids!

Last year, I began making an effort to bring one of our children along on a trip, if it was feasible, each time. My wife took our daughter on a pretty great trip to have dinner in the sky in Athens (courtesy of SPG points and a Moments Auction) and I was able to take two of our boys along, separately, for some quick, fun journeys.

This year, each of our 4 children had the chance to accompany us some trips. Our youngest one went for his last flight as a lap child on a trip to the US (thanks to empty business class cabins, he was actually given his own seat anyway!) and the older three had some special times as well.

First Trip – Etihad Apartments With Our Daughter!

favorite trips

One of my favorite trips was with my daughter and included flying in Etihad’s First Apartment!

In February, I took our daughter on a quick trip to Dubai where we did a few of the must-do things before making our way back to Greece the long way – from Abu Dhabi to London to Munich to Greece. 🙂 The reason for that was because I wanted to show her the best in commercial air travel (when using points) – at the time – and take her for a trip on Etihad’s A380 in the First Apartment. Most of those kinds of trips are solo ones so when I had the chance to let her experience that kind of flying, I thought it would be fun.

However, that kind of a trip for an 8 year old can really spoil them quickly! 🙂 Fortunately, she enjoyed it immensely but also adjust to coach again pretty fast!


Her highlights of the trip had been a trip up Burj Khalifa, the Fountain Show at the Dubai Mall, spending some rest time in our fabulous suite at the Park Hyatt Dubai, enjoying breakfast in the Etihad First Class lounge, showering on an airplane, and having a great time on our oh-too-short flight between Abu Dhabi and London in her own apartment.

For an 8 year old, things like having a fancy meal in the sky, playing a game in a lounge in the sky, and playing Angry Birds on her own 24″ screen were all some pretty great experiences! Overall, the trip was fantastic and it could have taken place with budget airlines and hotels and we still would have had a great time. Just being able to spend some quality time with our daughter was a blast!

Second Trip – Ryanair To Paris With Our Sons!

favorite trip

Flying Ryanair is fun when you do it with loved ones! 🙂

For the opposite end of the spectrum, I took two of our sons to Paris in June for the Paris Air Show – and we flew with Ryanair! As far as travel methods, Etihad First Apartments and Ryanair are about as far apart on the luxe scale as you can get! But, it was still a fantastic trip since I was with my boys.

Enjoying the Park Hyatt Vendôme’s wonderful macaroons!

While in Paris, we stayed at the Park Hyatt Vendôme for our first night and stayed at the Hyatt Regency Étoile for the second night.

Of course, the highlight of this trip was taking in the fantastic Paris Air Show with our sons who love airplanes. The weather was hot but the day was still great with a lot of fun at the airport and then some touring around to see things like the Eiffel Tower.


There were many other trips but these two trips were my favorite ones. It goes to show that even though the journey is half the fun and we love to do it in luxury, who we travel with and what we do can make the trip great no matter the mode of transportation! Flying the Etihad Apartments with my daughter was a blast but so was flying Ryanair with the two boys. 🙂

Looking forward to some great trips in 2018 as well!

Featured image © Can Stock Photo : fredgoldstein

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About the author


Charlie has been an avid traveler and runner for many years. He has run in marathons around the world for less than it would cost to travel to the next town - all as a result of collecting and using miles and points. Over the years, he has flown hundreds of thousands of miles and collected millions of miles and points.
Now he uses this experience and knowledge to help others through Running with Miles.