Heading to Madagascar for $263.12 + 45,910 Chase Ultimate Reward points

You guys, I am totally stoked about an upcoming trip I’ve just booked — Madagascar!

It began with a notification from Secret Flying for $775 round-trip fares from Washington (Dulles) to Antananarivo, Madagascar on Ethiopian Airlines. When I checked for availability, I saw that I could book over Thanksgiving, and immediately snagged a ticket.

I decide to use a mixture of points and cash because I didn’t want to use all of my Chase Ultimate Reward points, but I also wanted to pay as little as possible (I have trips coming up to Lake Tahoe, Medellín, Italy, Charleston, and Scottsdale, so am definitely trying to ball on a budget at this point).

Thanksgiving is my favorite time to travel outside of America, mostly because it’s the only time when I can take a full week away from my legal practice and be in any time zone I want. For the rest of the year, I need to be able to work on California time, but over Thanksgiving I can go to places like Asia, Australia, and Africa without worrying that I’ll be missing out on business.

I was planning to head to Malaysia for Thanksgiving this year, but this deal to Madagascar was too good to pass up. Ethiopian Airlines is a member of the Star Alliance, and while I will be earning PQM towards status for the flight, it’s only at a 50% rate.

I’ll be there for 8 days and want to see beautiful landscapes, all of the animals, interesting flowers and trees, and spend some time at the beach. Luckily, I have 2 great friends coming with me who are going to help make the trip a blast (my friends added on a trip to Ethiopia to their journey, though I’ll sadly have to miss out on that portion). I am still in the early phases of researching things to do there, so if you have any advice or tips, definitely let me know!

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