Trip Report: You Dropped a Zero (To Japan with United)- Introduction

United Club Boston
United First Class Boston to Chicago
United Global First Lounge Chicago
United Airlines Global First Chicago to Tokyo
Intercontinental Tokyo
St. Regis Osaka
ANA Business Class Lounge Tokyo
Asiana First Class Lounge Seoul
United Global First Seoul to San Francisco

Way back in May 2013, just a couple of weeks after they sent us the email about the Lufthansa mispriced fare which resulted in this trip, the good people at Frequent Miler sent us an email about another mispriced fare: United was selling first class tickets from the east coast to Seoul, Korea, for 1300 dollars when they should have been 13,000. Whoever was entering the fare into the system must have dropped a zero when they typed it in, resulting in a 90 percent discount.

So we decided to jump on it. The fare was to Korea, but we wanted to go to Japan. But, just as we were trying to optimize the itinerary, the fare disappeared from Expedia. Luckily, my dad still had the fare window open on Priceline. So we decided to not optimize for now and just take the freaking fare.

Which we did. We booked this routing:


That means Boston to Chicago to Tokyo Narita to Seoul Incheon to San Francisco. That was awesome. I would be going to Asia for the first time in years, and I would get to go to a new country. However, we really wanted to go to Japan and not Korea. So we called United and asked if we could get a stopover out in in Tokyo, as we only had two hours there. When we called, the agent told us no. So we hung up and called again. This time, we got a good agent who actually let us book a stopover in Japan: nine nights in Japan and only one in Korea. We lucked out pretty nicely there.

Then came the question of positioning flights. Fares from San Diego to Boston were remarkably cheap, a hundred dollars in some cases, if we routed through Dallas. So we bought ourselves a one way to Boston with a stop in DFW. Then, for the return, we got ourselves a cheap Southwest flight from SFO to SAN and our itinerary was complete. The final routing looked like this:



Another great thing about this was that I had always wanted to go to Boston, me being an enormous American history fan. And what better place to go that the place where the American Revolution began?

We booked this trip over Spring Break, when both my sister and I had a week off of school. I was really excited. I would get to go to Japan and eat sushi in the place where it was born and go to Boston and see Lexington Green. And I would go to a park full of menacing deer. What could have been more fun?

About the Author

I'm Alex, and I am an enthusiast in all things travel: miles and points, airplanes, airline products, and more. On this blog, you can read my take on recent travel/ commercial aviation news, trip reports, ramblings, rants, and opinions, and I'll even share some of my aviation photography from time to time. Hope you enjoy reading, and happy travels!