About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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In my Winter 2002 Doublethink

In my Winter 2002 Doublethink article (pdf here, HTML here) I argued that our nation’s approach to terrorism was ultimately failed, because all of the security measures in the world will be unable to stop would-be terrorists. All of the civil liberties we give up in exchange for security will ultimately fail to make us safe. In the end, we will be both unsafe and unfree. In particular, I argued that airport security would simply move the target to the security and check-in line. Lo and behold on July 4th, a gunman attacked an El Al ticket counter in Los Angeles. In the above article, I predicted that the government’s response to an attack outside of security would simply be to move out the perimeter of security. Lo and behold, I’m sitting here watching CNN’s…

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Do-it-yourself upgrades American Airlines flies

Do-it-yourself upgrades American Airlines flies several three class (First/Business/Coach) 767 and 777 flights that are sold as two class (first and economy). That means that the business class seats are sold as coach (with coach service — just the better seat). In order to pre-reserve these seats, you need to be an American Airlines elite (because the front of coach is reserved for American Airlines elites who fly more than 25,000 miles a year with the airline). So, if you’re an elite it’s a “do-it-yourself” upgrade. You can also get these seats if you purchase a full fare ticket. At the airport itself you might have luck requesting one of these seats as well. Here are the current flights where this is possible: LAX-ORD AA88 9:36-15:36 ORD-LAX AA89 15:02-17:25 MIA-DFW: AA908 7:30-9:42, AA69 17:24-19:45 DFW-MIA:…

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