Did a infopass appointment recently to clarify something. Infopass is an appointment at the Immi office in downtown SF. Same building where they do interviews, but a separate section. It's where some immi officers can offer suggestions and answer questions. It's rather informal, in that they don't make any decisions on your case or anything, just offer advice.
Was reading conflicting reports online about whether you can travel abroad once your 2 year green card has expired but you have already applied for the ten year green card and gotten the one year extension. Some said you can't travel with just this extension letter, you have to get a stamp in your passport, some said you don't need this stamp.
So took a day off work and had a buddy drive us (parking around there can be a bitch) and we got over there. Went through a short security line. Said you can't bring your cellfone, but you can, just can't take it out to use it. Shut it off and keep it in your pockets. They frown on cameras and phones in there.
Funny thing was, there was a lady at the reception desk, who asks what your inquiry is and then she gets you a number to wait for an immi officer. But our question was simply answered with a "no, no stamp needed, you are ok to return on your one year extension paper, just bring that with you".
So in and out in minutes.
My bud circled off to get lunch on me in Portrero Hill, a nice fish and chips place on 18th , near the nice cafe there FARLEYS (which if I am not wrong was used in a scene from the movie SWEET NOVEMBER) a 15 minute drive. So we had a sammy at the nearby Specialties ( a nice chain sammy store, with great sammys and soups and salads and yummy pastries).
So thats it folks, no need to get a stamp in your passport while waiting for the ten year green card even if you travel abroad.
Booked her flight back home for late next month. Strangely SFO prices are about 500 higher then leaving from LAX on SQ in that time frame. And EVA and others are not really cheaper. She could go with Emirates for hundreds less but thats a long way routing through Dubai . But not being a seasoned traveller she is wary of taking a different route then the one she is used to. Can't blame her.
So got her a Virgin America flight from SFO down to LAX. And they interline so she can check her bags all the way through on SQ. Cool. And she gets to try out the A380 (which I have not been on either). On the day she wanted to travel to LAX from sFO> The Virgin ticket plus 50 for two pieces of luggage and 25 for a better seat turned out to be only 20 bucks less then First Class. So she gets to start her journey with a short First Class flight. NOt bad.
First gets you two free bags and is already a great seat (one of 4 only on the A320). Good deal. And there is food ! And Wine too (which I would certainly help myself to).
Ended up paying near exactly the same as her last two trips on SQ, even with the flight out to LAX on Virgin.
Ticket pricing varies widely. Ranging from summer highs of about 1600 down to winter lows of about 1000, sometimes as low as 900. EVA and SQ and Ci seem to be similarly priced for the most part. SQ she gets half miles , but for some reason she is getting full miles from LAX. Must be some sort of promotion. Weird that flying from SFO and back to SFO would have cost 1600 but flying out from LAX but returning to SFO costs 400 less? And even taking into account the 200 on Virgin for the one way F class still comes out 200 less! And she gets full miles for her frequent traveller. That is worth something later. I forget how many flights you need but there is a free one there eventually.
That makes Emirates quite aggressive currently offering a round trip SFO to JKT and back (by way of Dubai) for about 900! Aggressive. But I think its a longer routing. I would have taken that routing (but I would want to stay a few days in Dubai !). But she's more comfortable going the routing shes done prior.
Shes going to be in Indo this year for Ramadan because she cant drink even water until about 845pm here (due to day light savings) while in Indo its something like 2 hours earlier. IMportant if you can't even drink water.
Actually toyed around with this very new service from Concord Airport. A small biz jet / small plane airport near us.
They have just started using a 30 seater Embraer 135 jet (think its refurbished with new interiors). They ordered ten and just got the first one. They currently fly a small fleet of 4 seater Phenom 100s for charter. So this looks like a cool deal ! Fly on a biz jet from Concord to Burbank (only place they go besides Las Vegas) for bout 110.
Thought she could take this but then she would have to do a 7am flight (next one at 4pm is too late in the day) and have to take Uber from Burbank to LAX, which at some 35 miles or so would cost around 50 bucks.
Extra hassle, but she was pretty game on trying it. I said try it next time you are going to LA with buds.http://www.jetsuite.com/locations/netje ... re/Concord
It sounds awesome. Pull up to the small bizjet terminal. No long lines , no long security checks etc. Board your flight with only 29 other passengers . And fly in style (equivalent to biz class) down to Burbank in a bit over an hour !
Good deal for around 110 dollar !! Its bout 280 or so to Vegas, which is about the same as Virgin and Southwest usually charges. But Virgin sometimes have super cheap deals though on this run.