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Scott Turow Goes the Extra Mile to Maintain 'Executive Platinum' Status

Upintheair Attorney Scott Turow is the well-known author of legal best-sellers such as "One L" and “Presumed Innocent.” Among his many accomplishments in life, he undoubtedly served as an inspiration to thousands of disgruntled lawyers who secretly wanted to be novelists.

You would think that between his writing career (eight books and counting) and his legal career (which he has maintained as a partner at Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal) that Turow would be quite busy -- too busy, at least, to spend an entire day flying around the country on a 5,400 mile "mileage run" to keep his Executive Platinum status on American Airlines intact. But as he wrote over the holidays in The New York Times' Personal Journeys section, sometimes a prolific traveler's gotta do what a prolific traveler's gotta do.

Turow writes that on Dec. 8, he went on a mileage run (flying from "O’Hare to La Guardia at 7:40 a.m., Central time. LGA to Dallas at 11:29, Eastern. DFW to San Francisco at 3:45 p.m., Central. And then SFO back to Chicago at 6:20 p.m., Pacific, landing here again a little after midnight") to make sure he retained his E.P. status. (On American, passengers get E.P. status after flying 100,000 paid qualifying miles, or 100 "segments," in a year.) What airline perks would possibly make Scott Turow or anyone else do such a thing?

As an E.P., he writes, he enjoys:

  • priority over other passengers for first-class upgrades (which are free for E.P.s and available about 90 percent of the time) on routes in North and Central America.
  • bigger seats in first class, a power outlet for his computer, a free meal (usually) and first crack at storage bins for his carry-ons.
  • Free upgrades eight times on routes anywhere in the world, "so coach tickets to Buenos Aires become business class the minute I buy them."

According to Turow, about 50,000 other passengers like him take off on similar mileage runs every November and December to make sure their E.P. status is not jeopardized. But come Jan. 1, he notes sadly, he and his fellow E.P.s are right back with the rest of us at zero.

Posted by Bruce Carton on January 7, 2010 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)


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