The best perk from working with an airline are severely discounted rates for flights (if not free!) on your airline. What if your airline doesn’t fly to that amazing island in the Azores? Luckily, you know that one of your ZED partners probably does.
In this guide, I’ll show you how to fly on another airline to your dream destination and how to be a StaffTraveler!
What is staff travel?
Where should I go?
What an excellent question! This is a difficult one. It really depends on your hobbies, your timeframe, etc. Personally, the one thing I like to draw inspiration from is Instagram. Instagram allows you to explore photos from locations and by some popular tags.
I follow a few travelers who frequently post about trips they’ve taken. Usually, I draw my inspiration from them! Also, I love hearing about places that my friends and co-workers have gone to. Word of mouth is also a very good way to find some inspiration for locations you travel to.
The final place I like to draw inspiration from is my life goals. For me, this was my trip to Thailand. I spent some time in an animal rescue sanctuary near Chiang Mai. Being near rescued dogs, elephants, and buffalo was such an amazing experience. Even better, I was able to camp among them! That memory of being in Chiang Mei will be one I cherish forever. This is why I encourage you to chase your life goals.
The final place I like to draw inspiration from is my life goals. For me, this was my trip to Thailand. I spent some time in an animal rescue sanctuary near Chiang Mei. Being near rescued dogs, elephants, and buffalo was such an amazing experience. Even better, I was able to camp among them! That memory of being in Chiang Mei will be one I cherish forever.
When should I go?
Just as before, this is is a difficult question to answer and depends on you! Being a StaffTraveller on standby could be difficult. So given the location and time of year will determine how hard of a trip it’ll be!
The three main things I try to do when I Staff Travel are:
- Avoid the peak season
- Avoid flying on the weekends
- Aim for the first flight of the day
For some, this isn’t as difficult, especially who can take the jump seat. I am not able to fly jump seat but I wish I could!
How do I get there?
This is where the real fun begins!
The first thing I like to do is to determine what airports I’d like to fly into. For example, If I wanted to fly from Amsterdam to Hong Kong, a quick search in the StaffTraveler app tells me that I should fly to HKG and that I might have multiple options.
The next thing you’ll want to do is check with your company website to find a list of airlines you can fly on. These airlines should be part of your ZED Agreement. You will have to find these agreements through your airline.
Chances are, your airline uses myIDTravel as their staff travel booking system. In order to access myIDTravel, you’ll need to go through the employee website of your airline. Below, I’ll walk you through how to check which airlines you can staff travel with on myIDTravel. Your airline might use a different (or their own) system.
Which airlines can I choose from?
I’ll be honest here, myIDTravel is not the friendliest of systems for research. Once you get the hang of it, you can navigate it with minimum tears. To begin, enter your desired departure, destination and airline, select the date of departure, and let it roll.
Once you land on the next page, you’ll see some smiley faces to indicate your chances of making it on your desired flight. Let me be the first to tell you, this is not the most effective tool to gauge your chances of spending your weekend in Hong Kong. Rarely accurate, the smiley faces are green (happy), yellow (meh) and red (no-way-Jose-you’re-not-making-this-flight). Personally, I’ve rarely found these to be reliable, and don’t trust them when making plans.
To make my staff travel experience as painless as possible (who among us hasn’t slept in an airport before?), I use the StaffTraveler app. Thanks to this app, you no longer need to rely on the mercy of 3 old fashioned emojis. Instead, you can have a vast network of airline employees at your disposal cheering you on! StaffTraveler provides you the most accurate flight availability for flights; some call it “the world’s best non-rev app”, yep, shameless plug.
There’s too much to know about staff travel to cover everything in a single blog post. Luckily, there’s a wealth of information in the StaffTraveler Insider Knowledge Base. Also, every airline has it’s own quirks. Make sure you inform yourself thoroughly about the particularities of the airline you wish to travel with. You’ll find everything you need to know in the StaffTraveler Airline Notes.