January Roster

Just like that, 2020 is upon us! The past year flew by so quickly, and I feel like sometimes I just live waiting for the roster each month.

Whilst I haven’t made any New Year’s resolutions as such, I will try my hardest to make the most of all of my layovers, and get out and explore as much as possible!

As for this month’s roster, here goes:

  • LIS – Lisbon, Portugal
  • PEK – Beijing, China
  • SYD – CHC – Sydney, Australia & Christchurch, New Zealand
  • KUL – Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
  • JED – Jeddah, Saudi Arabia (turnaround)
  • ARN – Stockholm, Sweden

Sadly I didn’t get a single one of my bids, but I did have my top bid month in December, so wasn’t expecting too much. Not my favourite roster I’ve ever had, but it could be worse!

I started the month (and year!) off with a flight to Lisbon – although it was quiet it was very long at just over 8 hours there. Having been to Lisbon on holiday previously, I had a quiet layover with a bit of browsing round the shops, although it was super busy with post-Christmas shoppers.

Next up is Beijing – a destination I haven’t visited in a while. I tried to swap this flight but with no success, so I’ll see what the rest of the crew fancy doing when I’m there. 

Following on from that is a multi-sector trip to Sydney and Christchurch. I also tried to swap this one as I’ve only just been to Sydney, and I’d rather do shorter flights, but there are so many swap legalities that it was impossible. Hopefully the smoke from the awful bushfires doesn’t get any worse. 

After my multi-sector down under, it’s back to Asia, with a trip to Kuala Lumpur. It’s actually been a year since I last visited, but the timing of this flight is not ideal – we fly through the night from Dubai and get there early morning.

Then I have a quick turnaround to Jeddah and back, let’s hope it’s uneventful. Once again not great timing – leaving Dubai at midnight and getting back at 8am.

My last flight of the month is to Stockholm, the one I’m looking forward to the most! I’m really hoping for some snow, as I haven’t been anywhere with snow yet this winter.

And that’s it for January 2020… I wonder where else this year will take me!

P.s. Follow me on InstagramFacebook & Twitter for more day-to-day updates of where I am in the world! 🙂

Christmas Markets in Vienna

Vienna at Christmastime is truly special, and I feel very lucky that I was able to visit twice in December! 

Of course the main thing I wanted to do was visit the Christmas market, or “Christkindlmarkt” as it’s known in German. Having lived in Austria for 6 years, I know how festive and pretty they are.

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Unfortunately the market in Vienna has strict timings, and closes at 9pm on the dot, unlike what I remember from Klagenfurt (where I lived) where the Glühwein stands would stay open much later.

We made our way straight from the hotel after landing to catch the last hour os so before they closed and be able to enjoy a festive mulled wine.

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Brunch & Beach in Melbourne

I had a great layover in Melbourne, Australia not so long ago. My cousin Sarah, who lives there, was able to get a day off work, so we could spend the day together exploring!

Having visited Melbourne quite a few times now, I’ve seen a fair bit of the city, so Sarah decided to take me out to the beach.

Not before a hearty brunch of course, what Melbourne does best!

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Hiking Up Lion’s Head

Last month I swapped on to a flight to Cape Town. If you’re a regular reader here, you’ll know that Cape Town, South Africa, is one of my all time favourite destinations! 

As you can imagine, I was very much looking forward to the trip. After a nice and easy 9 hour flight (my penultimate in first class!) we arrived at the hotel and were greeted with fresh juices and fried chicken! Definitely a great start.

A few of us decided to meet for dinner, and instead of our usual Waterfront destination, decided to mix things up and head to The Butcher Shop & Grill, a lovely steakhouse.

We shared some tasty red South African red wine, and all enjoyed delicious steaks. Slightly pricier than some of the other restaurants in Cape Town, but still very affordable (and even more so compared to Dubai).

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Bangkok, Thailand – Bang Kachao, An Island Escape in the City


I have been to Bangkok so many times over the past 6 years with Emirates, and it’s a destination I’m always happy to return to. Delicious Thai food, amazing cheap massages, and a short-ish flight makes it a popular destination for almost everyone!

However, as with every destination that you’ve been to more times than you can count, you end up getting into your routine there. (See above – Thai food and a great massage!). So when I was there recently and one of our crew suggested visiting a small island in the city for a day out, I jumped at the chance!

Bang Kachao, known as “Bangkok’s Green Lung” is the perfect escape from the busy city – a forested island with cycling trails, cafés and a nature park just waiting to be explored.

We took a taxi from our hotel to the river and jumped on a tiny boat to take us across to the island. The boat cost about 10 Baht each!

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