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Old 03-20-2009, 08:07 PM
treefrog's Avatar
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Default Travel Agent or On-line?

What is the best way to make travel arrangement to Germany? Using a travel agent, or do it yourself? If do it yourself, online or calling airlines?

I think what I want to do, is fly coach to Germany and then business class coming back (if it is feasible). My back is not horrible (and I am pretty small so leg room isn't an issue), so I think I can stand a normal coach seat for the flight over.

Any tips on making these arrangements?
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Cathy

46 years old. 12-15 years of intermittent pain, 2 years with constant pain.

DDD, L4-5 and L5-S1, pain confirmed by discogram.
PT, ESI's, Facet injection and block, Acupuncture - all no help.

2-level (Prodisc-L) ADR surgery with Dr. Bertagnoli, May 26, 2009.

Currently taking Opana-ER (tapering off) and oxycodone
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Old 03-21-2009, 12:40 AM
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Cathy,

I made my flight arrangements online today since I figured the drive would be too long. If you're going to "split" classes, they'll have you purchase the economy ticket then call them to upgrade (if possible) to the business class return flight. They wouldn't guarantee an upgrade for my journey.

I've flown economy on overseas flights before. It's really not all that uncomfortable. Since the dollar took a nosedive this week, I didn't have the extra to fly business class.

Good luck on your journeys,

Bob
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05/06 MRI shows DDD @ L2-S1
06/06 Diskectomy/ Laminotomy L5/S1
04/07 Recurrent Disc Surgery L5/S1
3 Ortho and 1 Neuro Surgeon, 3 MRIs, 1 EGM, 1 Myleogram & 11 EDIs later:
03/27/09 Maverick ADR at L4/L5 & L5/S1
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Old 03-21-2009, 02:50 AM
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My boyfriend asked if I had considered taking a boat back.
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Cathy

46 years old. 12-15 years of intermittent pain, 2 years with constant pain.

DDD, L4-5 and L5-S1, pain confirmed by discogram.
PT, ESI's, Facet injection and block, Acupuncture - all no help.

2-level (Prodisc-L) ADR surgery with Dr. Bertagnoli, May 26, 2009.

Currently taking Opana-ER (tapering off) and oxycodone
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Old 04-01-2009, 03:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by treefrog View Post
What is the best way to make travel arrangement to Germany? Using a travel agent, or do it yourself? If do it yourself, online or calling airlines?

I think what I want to do, is fly coach to Germany and then business class coming back (if it is feasible). My back is not horrible (and I am pretty small so leg room isn't an issue), so I think I can stand a normal coach seat for the flight over.

Any tips on making these arrangements?
I used a travel agent at the time of my 2-level ADR in 2003, as I was only 23 at the time and had only been overseas one time.

This time around I'm definitely setting things up myself. However, I have to say that my Dad uses a travel agent for his travel and the packages they come up with everything included (airfare, hotel, tours, etc.) are super "cheap" compared to booking everything individually.

Airline deals abound online these days, especially with the current economy. I've always had great experiences with sites like expedia, etc.
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1994 Football Injury
1997 Snow Skiing Injury
Laminotomy L4/L5 (3.7.97--17 years old)
1999 & 2003 MVA (not at fault both times)
Grade V Tears L4/L5 & L5/L6
2-Level ProDisc® L4/L5 & L5/L6* *lumbosacral transitional vertebra (11.15.03--23 years old)
Dr. Rudolf Bertagnoli -- dr-bertagnoli.com
Pain-free for the last 4.5 yrs.
5.14.09 DSS with Dr. B.
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Old 04-01-2009, 03:13 PM
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PS... make sure to check airline prices at 2:30pm / 4:30pm / Midnight during the week and 5:00pm on the weekend--these are the times that airlines update their prices.

These sites are great too:

farecast.com
wegolo.com

Wow, roundtrip to Munich right now is $397 on farecast....
__________________
-Justin
1994 Football Injury
1997 Snow Skiing Injury
Laminotomy L4/L5 (3.7.97--17 years old)
1999 & 2003 MVA (not at fault both times)
Grade V Tears L4/L5 & L5/L6
2-Level ProDisc® L4/L5 & L5/L6* *lumbosacral transitional vertebra (11.15.03--23 years old)
Dr. Rudolf Bertagnoli -- dr-bertagnoli.com
Pain-free for the last 4.5 yrs.
5.14.09 DSS with Dr. B.
I'm here to help. Only checking PMs currently.

Last edited by Justin; 04-01-2009 at 03:22 PM.
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Old 04-01-2009, 05:00 PM
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That is an incredible price Justin.

Well, I am hoping that I will be making plans soon.

A friend of ours is going to donate miles to me, that I can use to upgrade (hopefully). She travels a lot on business and has a lot of miles. I haven't traveled extensively, so I'm nervous about the best way to go about it. The only trip I've taken outside the US recently was to Belize last February (my mom took my sister and I to Jamaica when we graduated from college, but that was more than 20 years ago, and she made all the plans, you didn't even need a passport then). But the woman who's home we were going to, told us exactly which airlines to take and all the other details, and all I had to do was book my flights. It wasn't as complicated as this trip is likely to be.

I've done some travel inside the US, and used Expedia, bookingbuddy.com and other similar type sites.

Thanks for the tips on when to check the prices. I remember hearing that there was some particular time to check, to get the cheapest prices, but I can't remember when that is. I'll have to see if I can find out if I wrote it down somewhere.

Though, actually this is the least of my worries. I have a credit card and I no how to use it . I'm more worried about arranging funds to pay for the surgery. I'm sure I can come up with it, it's just how much stress it is going to cause me, to figure it out.
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Cathy

46 years old. 12-15 years of intermittent pain, 2 years with constant pain.

DDD, L4-5 and L5-S1, pain confirmed by discogram.
PT, ESI's, Facet injection and block, Acupuncture - all no help.

2-level (Prodisc-L) ADR surgery with Dr. Bertagnoli, May 26, 2009.

Currently taking Opana-ER (tapering off) and oxycodone
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Old 04-04-2009, 06:18 PM
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Hey Cathy,

Belize is beautiful...my wife was there during a Tropical Biology class during undergrad. I was hoping to do a rotation there, but with my upcoming surgery I don't think it will be feasible anymore.

BTW, I just checked airfare on Farecast today and it's $149 each way nonstop to Munich from Philly. I'm trying to finalize my surgery date with Dr. Bertagnoli, so I hope these prices hold.

My wife and I traveled to Munich and Vienna for my surgery in 2003 and it was easy for us to use the trains and navigate our way around at 22 and 23 years-old. Traveling in Europe is really easy, especially with the train system.

Good luck and I hope you are feeling well.
__________________
-Justin
1994 Football Injury
1997 Snow Skiing Injury
Laminotomy L4/L5 (3.7.97--17 years old)
1999 & 2003 MVA (not at fault both times)
Grade V Tears L4/L5 & L5/L6
2-Level ProDisc® L4/L5 & L5/L6* *lumbosacral transitional vertebra (11.15.03--23 years old)
Dr. Rudolf Bertagnoli -- dr-bertagnoli.com
Pain-free for the last 4.5 yrs.
5.14.09 DSS with Dr. B.
I'm here to help. Only checking PMs currently.
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Old 11-29-2010, 05:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Justin View Post
Hey Cathy,

BTW, I just checked airfare on Farecast today and it's $149 each way nonstop to Munich from Philly. I'm trying to finalize my surgery date with Dr. Bertagnoli, so I hope these prices hold.
Incredible and reasonable price! wish i could get a similar cost like what you have.
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Old 11-30-2010, 11:28 PM
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Travelbugz,

The fare Justin got was pretty amazing. However, now is a good time to be planning a trip. I don't know when you are planning on going, but in years past, January round trips LA to Munich have been easy to get for $450 to $600.
__________________
1997 MVA
2000 L4-5 Microdiscectomy/laminotomy
2001 L5-S1 Micro-d/lami
2002 L4-S1 Charite' ADR - SUCCESS!
2009 C3-C4, C5-C6-C7, T1-T2 ProDisc-C Nova
Summer 2009, more bad thoracic discs!
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