Travel Date: Wednesday, February 15, 2017
I had joined a meetup group in Richmond: RVA Near and Far (20-30 Somethings). It was organized by Cassie, who also happens to be a travel agent with Accent on Travel. She was setting up a group of people to go to Iceland, and I had indicated that I was interested in going. And there were 8 other people interested as well.
Three of us met at Cassie’s house, and we head out to Iceland.
We get into Katie’s car, and before leaving, I ask everyone if they have their passports on them. We all do a passport check and confirm we have it. 10 minutes into driving I realize that I have my passport, but not my wallet with my credit card, and my green card. F%#@!!!
Fortunately, we are only 10 minutes in, and we turn around and get my wallet. It was in my car. We drive to the Hilton nearby Washington Dulles Airport. Cassie found a deal where you can park your car for under $6. I’m all about saving money. So we lounge at the Hilton Hotel, charge our devices, and wait for our free Airport Shuttle.
At the airport, we noticed that there are no signs for Icelandic Airlines. So after asking around we find the path to our airline.
Wow. That is a LONG LINE. We actually walk around the empty line, and check in our bags.
I have TSA-Pre and highly recommend it. However, the airline must be registered with TSA-Pre for passengers to be able to use. Unfortunately, Iceland Air doesn’t offer TSA-Pre, so I have to use the regular line. Bummer.
Interestingly enough, I go out without any problems. Josh, Katie, and Cassie get stopped for various things. They are all American, and I’m the foreigner. And poor Cassie gets a little more “personal service” with TSA.
After a long wait, we head over to our gate. Since I have Priority Pass through the Chase Sapphire Reserve Card, I invite the group to join me in private Air France and KLM Lounge.
Free food, free wifi, and free adult beverages. Great company. And new friendships.
It is time to board the plane. That is the plane taking us directly to Iceland.
In the background you can see the Icelandic flag in red, white, and blue.
We board quickly.
Fantastic. I have a charging port for my phone.
My neighbor is awesome, and we celebrate a free middle seat before take off.
Goodbye Washington, DC. Goodbye America. See you in a few days. I look forward to touching down in Keflavik International Airport, Iceland.
During our 6 hours flight, I mix up some rest, with work and music. Straight Outta Compton keeps me up and hooked!
Things and moments to appreciate:
- The Meetup Group to meet other relatively like minded travelers.
- Cassie for her hard work in organizing, herding cats, and being patient with us.
- For Cassie and Katie suggesting that we leave 1 hour earlier than we needed to, because in the end it helped us be on time since I left my wallet in the car, and we had to go back to get it.
- Awareness of being present and listening to my thoughts. My inner voice shouted out loudly to check my wallet, and I listened immediately.
- Katie for driving.
- Priority Pass, Chase Sapphire Reserve Card, and being able to share my lounge access benefits with new friends.
- Being able to physically and financially able to travel to Iceland and experience new things.
- Schegen Visa to Iceland: $129.95 (Travisa costs for Indian passport holders)
- Travel Insurance: $115.25 (stuff for travel insurance and other items for getting the Schegen Visa – *for those who have to apply for travel visas to Europe)
- Airline Ticket: $511.88 (A round trip IcelandAir ticket from Washington, D.C. to Iceland)