The largest aircraft order in history

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Travel Trivia Tuesday: Although in English we call it “Bangkok,” what is the official name for this capital and largest city in Thailand? Keep reading to find out.

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Travel Trivia Tuesday: Although in English we call it “Bangkok,” what is the official name for this capital and largest city in Thailand? Keep reading to find out.

Good morning and welcome to Daily Drop, the only newsletter scientifically proven to cure wanderlust in five minutes or less.

Here’s what’s on the docket for today:

  • 🇮🇳 Air India places the single largest aircraft order in history

  • ✈️ Virgin Atlantic offers a 30% discount on award flights

  • 🤓 Travel Trivia Tuesday

🇮🇳 Air India places the single largest aircraft order in history

Airlines place plane orders all the time. Maybe they’re replacing some planes in their fleet and need to order a couple dozen birds. Or maybe they’re entering the long-haul game and decide to order one or two widebody planes.

Or maybe they’re like Air India, who comes into the picture and says “hold my beer.”

As you may have heard, Air India recently placed an order for a whopping 500 new planes from both Boeing and Airbus, the largest aircraft order in history.

There’s no telling how expensive this order is, but it has to be quite a few billion dollars, given the number of planes, which includes over 100 brand new widebody planes.

So what does this mean?

Ummm, does it need to mean something? It’s insane. Be more impressed, please.

But also, this opens up some serious doors for travel hackers. Air India is a member of Star Alliance, and their flights are bookable with a whole slew of points programs.

The problem is that… Their planes kinda suck.

Most of their fleet has seen better days. The seats, planes, and even crew look like they need a revamp. As a result, I definitely avoid flying with them whenever possible.

With other premium carriers like Vistara around (which have lie-flat seats even on their tiny planes) charging similar prices, it’s hard to justify flying with Air India.

Now, however, I can see that changing drastically. Air India has made it abundantly clear that they are 110% committed to turning their business around. And personally, I am really excited about it.

So keep your eyes open for when they start taking delivery of these new planes, and definitely consider trying out their sleek new products.

✈️ Virgin Atlantic somehow gets even better this week

Over the last couple of weeks, we’ve talked a lot about Virgin Atlantic.

Between joining the SkyTeam alliance, the transfer bonus from Citi, and the new Virgin Voyages cruise deal, Virgin has kind of been killing the game lately.

If all of that wasn’t enough, Virgin Atlantic is now also offering a 30% discount on award flights for the next few months, offering some amazing opportunities.

Check out the deets:

  • Book flights by February 28th

  • Fly before May 31st, 2023

  • Sale for specific cities only, though most are U.S. cities

  • You must be a Flying Club member (free to sign up)

  • Valid for Economy, Premium Economy, and Upper Class (business)

A 30% discount on one of the hottest airlines in the sky is pretty amazing, and yet another example of how Virgin Atlantic is quickly becoming a major player in the international airline game.

Here are a few examples of routes featured in this sale, along with their corresponding cost in points, taxes, and fees.

Obviously, the main downside here is that taxes and fees in the U.K. are astronomical. Still, if you can snag a Virgin Upper Class (a.k.a. business class) seat, it will be well worth the ancillary cash costs.

But here’s where things get even more interesting…

As I mentioned last week, Citi is currently offering a 30% transfer bonus to Virgin Atlantic.

That means that those seats in the image above that cost 14,000 points would actually only cost you under 11,000 Citi ThankYou points.

11,000 points, or 22,000 points round-trip, to cross the Atlantic on one of the best premium airlines in the sky is AMAZING.

While we’re on the topic of great deals across the Atlantic, tell me:

When a deal like this comes along, how do you prefer to use your points?

Only Email Recipients can participate in polls.

The only other time we see trans-Atlantic awards this cheap is with Flying Blue (KLM and Air France), but even those never go quite this low.

Even if you don’t have a Citi credit card, you can still transfer points to Virgin Atlantic from Chase, Amex, Capital One, and Bilt - so pretty much any travel card that earns transferrable points.

Make sure you act quickly - although the travel window is quite wide, you need to book your ticket by February 28th to get the 30% discount.

Happy flying!

🤓 Travel Trivia Tuesday

Alright, folks. We’ve arrived at the moment you’ve all been waiting for.

Yes, we call the largest city in Thailand “Bangkok.” Locals, however, would call it “Krung Thep Maka Nakhon.”

But the official name, and I’m not kidding, is…

“Krung Thep Mahanakhon Amon Rattanakosin Mahinthara Ayuthaya Mahadilok Phop Noppharat Ratchathani Burirom Udomratchaniwet Mahasathan Amon Piman Awatan Sathit Sakkathattiya Witsanukam Prasit”

The literal translation is:

The city of angels, the great city, the residence of the Emerald Buddha, the impregnable city (unlike Ayutthaya) of God Indra, the grand capital of the world endowed with nine precious gems, the happy city, abounding in an enormous Royal Palace that resembles the heavenly abode where reigns the reincarnated god, a city given by Indra and built by Vishnukarn.”

So… yeah.

That’s all for today, friends! Pretty crazy about Bangkok, eh? For all you keeners out there, there’s a good way to impress some locals next time you visit Thailand.

Have you ever flown Air India or Virgin Atlantic? Are you excited about all of these strides VA is making in recent weeks? Let me know by replying to this email or reaching out on social media.

See you tomorrow ❤️

Mike Dodge
Head Writer, Daily Drop

52°22'35.4"N 52°15'17.4"W

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