Frequent Flyer Miles, the insanity, the addiction … the documentary

While I am not mileage runner as an airline traveller I probably have what some may consider an unhealthy interest in gaining miles. I have been known to fly from San Francisco to Los Angeles using New York as my connection point, or fly to Hong Kong via Frankfurt to pick up a few thousand extra miles while traveling on business.

Since I first started Flying With Fish I have continuously received emails asking about frequent flyer programs, earning miles and mileage runs. The other day I was reminded of a fantastic 20-minute documentary on the obsession with frequent flyer miles that was released at the end of 2009 by Gabriel Leigh … a mileage runner.

In Leigh’s documentary he interviews a number of other frequent flyer junkies … including Randy Petersen, the founder of FlyerTalk and the guy who started BoardingArea … where Flying With Fish is hosted.  The documentary explores the miles obsession, the love of planes, the personal calm achieved by sitting in an airport for hours with no other destination besides the airport.

Many find themselves apologizing for their love of flying and sitting on planes while this documentary takes this joy that is so misunderstood by many and puts it all out in the open.

So, without further ado “Frequent Flyer

Happy Flying!



  1. I did 40g in mileage runs this year. Went DEN-SIN and was in Singapore for 30 hours, and even if there were no miles involved it would have been worth it. I also went DEN-SYD for 8 hours. Got in on the first flight, left on the last flight of the day (UA839/UA870), and a trip DEN-PHL, where I was off the plane in PHL for 9 minutes, although I was in IAD for 5 hours. While the miles were the biggest part of SYD,PHL, I love flying in general, so that helps me justify what 99.8% of the world would see as a waste.

  2. I’ve been Delta Plat (now Diamond) for a long time. Due to short business runs this year (darn those customers in the EST time zone!) I came up short this year (Gold). As such, I did my very first mileage run. (ATL-ICN-BKK-DTW-ATL) Combined with a short semi-business/semi-vacation trip, it was nice. (and I maintain my string of Platinum, even if it’s not Diamond this year.)

    I have to admit, if I didn’t love flying, this would have been total hell. But what other’s call hell, I call home.

    I look forward to seeing this video.

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