There are certain things that at first seem absolutely preposterous to me in written form. One of these was the idea of a bunch of frequent flyers chartering a plane to go on a massive miles earning and downright educational experience to different parts of the world. It just seemed far fetched to me that this could actually happen, with busy schedules, flyers located all over the world and myriad other reasons that it should not work.
But it DOES work, and it’s called MegaDO.
The next MegaDO goes on sale today and it is an opportunity to earn Star Alliance qualifying miles by flying from Toronto to San Francisco via Tucson, AZ. The event is called Star MegaDO 5 and tickets go on sale today (5/20/2013) at noon CST. The trip will go from Tuesday, October 22 through Friday, October 25, 2013.
You will need to find your way to Toronto for the start of the trip and then find your way home from San Francisco. Most accommodations are paid for in between.
My Frequently Asked Questions About going on a MegaDO
Since I have never gone on a MegaDO before, I had a ton of questions to ask of people who have been on them in the past. Fortunately, I was able to talk about them with several people at Frequent Traveler University and BAcon. Here are some of the questions I asked and the answers I received.
How do you pronounce MegaDO?
It’s pronounced Mega – Dew. Like Mountain Dew. I’m glad I learned this, because I had always pronounced it Mega-Doe in my head before hearing it out loud.
Who goes on these trips?
A lot of the top travel bloggers are on these trips, as well as executives for major airlines and hotel programs. In addition, the tickets go on sale to the general public and usually sell out in a matter of minutes. Given that there is only a finite inventory on these airplanes, seats fill up very fast!
Do real people actually go on these things?
Yes, this is a question I asked out loud at FTU, because I just couldn’t believe that they were real. From what I gathered after talking with several previous attendees, they are real and they are spectacular.
Is it fun or is it Draining?
While it is a lot of travel and information to soak in during a short amount of time, it sounds like the prevailing thought is that it is an amazing time for anyone who flies on a MegaDO.
Do you Earn Miles in a MegaDO?
Yes. In the particular case of Star MegaDO 5, you earn 2,500 Elite Qualifying Miles (EQM) in Coach, 7,500 EQM in Tommy Class (Coach with middle Eat blocked off), 7,500 EQM’s for Tommy Class Exit Row (middle seat also blocked off) and 15,000 EQM’s for sitting in Business First. Now the costs go up with each seat option, but if you are looking for a mileage run, this may be a good option.
How much Does it Cost?
Anywhere from $1,199 for standard coach to $2,799 in Business First class for Star MegaDO 5.
Would You Do it Again?
Everyone I talked to who has been to a MegaDO in the past said that they would absolutely do it again, and they can’t wait for the next opportunity.
Will You be Going on a MegaDO Yourself, Jeffsetter?
I would love to have the opportunity to go, but it has to work into the schedule and be strategic for my points, miles and elite status needs. For example, if there were a Skyteam alliance DO with hotel stays at Hyatt or a Starwood property, I would be first in line. The current flight on Star Alliance (where I have no status today + little chance at future status) and stay with Marriott (no status, no chance this year) isn’t a strategic opportunity for me, but boy does it sound fun!
I will be keeping my eyes open for specific opportunities to go on a MegaDO, though, and I hope that may happen soon!
Are MegaDO’s always during the weekdays? Will they ever be on the weekend?
I’m not sure of this, but I personally would prefer a long weekend MegaDO as opposed to weekdays, because it would mean less PTO to give up. In addition, it’s easier for me to travel on weekends because there is far less email to deal with. I’ll have to check with Tommy and Randy to see if there are any weekender MegaDO events planned.
What Others Are Saying About Star MegaDO 5
Here is a roundup of some other posts across the web that talk about Star MegaDO 5:
Have you ever heard of a MegaDO? Have you been on one? Do you want to go on one? Let me know in the comments!