“Oh yeah, the J config is one of the best paxex on the 320.” Huh? Or how about “yeah, you’ll earn 35,000 EQM and 22,000 RDM?!” If this all sounds like your least favorite part of learning the magic of “travel hacking”, then this is definitely the right post for you. Here’s a handy cheat sheet (which you should totally bookmark) to talk like an insider, or at least understand…

a large white airplane on a runway

Air Travel Terms

Y- This is a simple one. It means economy. People just got too lazy to write eco, econ or economy so they started using the letter in airline booking systems that signifies economy.

J- This means business class. Again, writing biz, business, or any other short word to signify business class because too daunting, so people started using J, another booking system code.

F- Fancier than Y and even swankier than J, F means First Class. For planes with only two cabins you can use either J and F, but if there’s business and first this helps you signify.

AA, SQ, SA, VS, BA, DL, CX, JL, UA, LH, etc- These all mean the same thing. They are the two letter airline prefixes used worldwide to signify a specific airline. AA is American, for example.

EQM, PQM, MQM, TP, most Q things- These terms signify qualifying points or tier points, which have nothing to do with the miles you use for free flights. They establish your elite flyer status.

RDM, Avios, Skymiles, etc- RDM means redeemable miles, aka miles you collect and then use for free flights. Every airline has a different name like Avios, Skymiles, etc for theirs.

1-2-1, 2-2-2- These are simply seating layouts, with the first and last number being the window. 1-2-1 would mean a solo seat at the window, two seats in middle and another single.

TPAC, Transcon- These are refer to specific flights. TPAC means trans pacific, so a flight that crosses the Pacific Ocean, Transcon would mean a US coast to coast flight, and so forth…

SWU, GUF, RUC- These mean upgrade certificate. SWU is a system wide upgrade, GUF is a British Airways upgrade, RUC regional upgrade, etc. They’re handy to earn via MQM, TP, etc.

320, 77W, 380, CRJ, 772, 350, 737, 747- These are airplanes and there are many more. All of these abbreviations refer to a certain aircraft and generally signify what you’re flying.

Herringbone, Reverse Herringbone, Diamond- These are all seating types, which are primarily discussed in regards to business class. Most people prefer reverse herringbone over others.

IRROPS- Irregular operations. That’s all. People discuss IRROPS in relation to problems, delays and re routings. You’ll often see “incase of IRROPS”, but were just talking weather.

a bedroom with a tv and a bed

Hotel Terms

AAA- This is a rate thats offered to members of the AAA organization, which just about anyone can join. Rates are often about 10% lower than “lowest” public rates.

CF- Club floor. This is mostly discussed in regards to an upgrade or a decision of whether or not to shell out for the lucrative club floor offerings, such as free wine and canapés.

F&B- Food and beverage. People love talking about what you can find at the poolside bar.

UC- Upgrade certificate. Elite members in the various hotel programs often receive certificates which they can apply to a reservation booked in a normal room to snag a suite!

EQN- Elite qualifying nights. Elite guest status with a hotel is almost all based on how many nights you sleep in one of their properties.

Gilbert Ott

Gilbert Ott is an ever curious traveler and one of the world's leading travel experts. His adventures take him all over the globe, often spanning over 200,000 miles a year and his travel exploits are regularly...

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