Washington Dulles International Airport

So, That’s What 100 Airports Looks Like

I’ll admit it, I’m a bit nutty about travel.  Where most people dread getting on an airplane, I’m frequently happy, especially when traveling with my family.  Being a self-avowed aviation geek, I keep track of all kinds of kooky stats about my travel.  I was excited when I chalked up my first million miles in the air and am working my way to 2 million. So, a little bit of me geeked out when I realized I had blown by 100 unique airports in my time on the road and […]

TSA Expands PreCheck So You Can Enroll Directly, And Why That’s a Bad Idea For You

I’ve been a huge fan of PreCheck since it’s inception. I was an early user through my elite status with American Airlines and have enjoyed near complete success using my Global Entry status. Just in case you haven’t been following along, what’s PreCheck?  It’s security the way you remember it from 15 years ago. Leave your shoes and belt on, leave your liquids and laptop in your suitcase. And, much shorter lines (though that’s slowly changing with more people enrolled). Before now, the only easy ways to get into PreCheck […]

American Testing Early Boarding For Those Without Bags That Require Overhead Bin Space

File this under interesting.  American is running a test at a handful of airports where passengers traveling in economy who just have a small bag to put under the seat in front of them are allowed to board before the rest of economy passengers.  A couple of observations: Since American (and pretty much everyone else other than Southwest) charges for checked bags this might actually encourage behavior that results in extra revenue for the airlines. It occurs to me that the only reason most people without status (and pretty much […]

Starbucks Evenings Opens at Dulles Airport

A couple months ago a “coming soon” sign popped up at my home airport, Washington Dulles.  In the B concourse, they would be adding a new Starbucks Evenings location.  In true Starbucks fashion, they placed this location directly across from the only Starbucks in the long A/B terminal. At the outset, it looks like a normal Starbucks.   There are a few more pre-made sandwich choices in this location as compared to a normal Starbucks.  There’s also a daily special board.  When I breezed by last week they were offering […]

The Brighter Side Of Dulles Airport

After making my kids pancakes this morning, I settled in to check e-mail.  The first e-mail I read this morning was a post on View From the Wing entitled, “Washington Dulles is a Very Bad Airport”.  Gary and I agree on most things, and we even agree on some of the things in his post.  But, on whole, I think he’s off-target on my home airport. Citing some of his specific points: Not only is it a good 45 minute drive from downtown, but once you’re there you’re not even […]

A Quick Tip To Speed Up Your Travel At Washington Dulles Airport (IAD)

I’ve called Washington Dulles Airport (IAD) my home base for roughly 15 years now.  The last 5 years or so, that’s meant over 100,000 miles a year originating out of IAD.  With that many miles, you tend to find every way possible to shave a few seconds off your travel time. For the longest time, my best secret was the Dulles Diamond security lane.  It was a security lane downstairs in baggage claim that most people never knew about.  You could guarantee yourself a short walk through security pretty much […]

StarMegaDO4: Getting Under Way

MegaDO (noun):  A once-in-a-lifetime gathering (that happens once a year) of like-minded, slightly nuts travel geeks where they charter an airplane and fly to different destinations around the world.  A big plane.  You know, like a 757 or 767.  To visit airlines, plane manufacturers, hotel companies. And, to have a cocktail party at 35,000 feet.  And a pillow fight.  And raise a lot of money for charity. Did I leave anything out?  My involvement in the MegaDOs started a couple years ago when I decided to take my dad on […]

New (Interesting) Dining Option At Dulles

I saw this sign when I got back to Dulles airport in the B concourse. As a foodie and a student of the restaurant industry as a whole, Starbucks has offered a wealth of case study.  Now, they’ve started branching out past coffee, mints, sweet treats and CDs to include some light dinner options and the occasional glass of wine. I’m happy to have the additional option at Dulles, there’s really not too many good food options.  And, as a disavowed restaurant guy, I think it’s interesting to see how […]

TSA Pre-Check Makes a Perfect Landing at Dulles

I crossed my fingers on the way to the airport this morning.  Today was the day Dulles airport had announced that TSA Pre-Check would launch. The airport had blown through the first deadline they established to have security open upstairs, so it wasn’t entirely clear to me that they would make today’s deadline. So I was pleasantly surprised when I headed upstairs this morning and saw the lights were on in the Pre-Check area.  Now, it was pretty early and still dark out, so I had to get a bit […]

Still No TSA Pre-Check Upstairs Security Area

I blogged last week that Dulles Airport had announced the arrival of TSA Pre-Check. At that time, they told me that the actual security checkpoint would open as a regular checkpoint upstairs a few days later and Pre-Check would arrive on September 25th. Unfortunately, that’s not the case. Didn’t think to snap a picture, but you can see some progress upstairs, though no open checkpoint. I was by there on Friday and just swung by again a few minutes ago on my way to a flight. More equipment is in […]