I met another traveler on this trip. She was a friend of my friends in Seattle and she travels a lot for business, but as anyone would, taking advantage of the accumulated miles and benefits that come from being a frequent flyer. There were some many different aspects between this class of traveler and what I did when I was out and about.
- All business related trips go to your personal miles program
- Always stay accommodated in fancy hotels
- Always transport in expensive and nice cabs without caring about the fare
- 90% of the trips are to locations you don't choose
- Travels 1st class
- Can be 100% loyal to an airline
- Can pick tickets based on preference of layovers, airports, connection times, instead of having to make the price the most important factor
- Travel in comfortable hours, when airport lounges are open and require less long nights between airports
Of course, after bearing with all that, then you have top benefits and are able to do all the other trips you need, be it explore something nice on the city you needed to be for work, it's now super cheap to get a first class trip to Thailand.
I found this very different with the way I traveled, where people always ask me why did I pick such layovers or schedule, the answer is always because of the price. Since most of my trips are self funded, saving those extra $100s makes a big difference. Sadly, that means that I cannot use the same airline every time since the destination/date combo will have different deals that will be significant savings.
The amount of flying is much less, since there is no such thing as going for one day only to a city, since that's a big investment of money and spare time for little benefit in a destination, so each trip is a bigger deal which requires more planning.
The ratio of pleasure vs work travel is balanced much differently for me, traveling mainly for pleasure and when it's work related always stretch it to enjoy more personally.