The blue light was dim but the noise was not, as laughter, conversation and wine sparkled in the lobby of New York's famed Charlie Palmer steakhouse at The Knickerbocker Hotel in Times Square.
Barclaycard Travel Community Members and Barclaycard Arrival Plus® World Elite Mastercard® cardmembers gathered among other foodies for an intimate dinner as part of the 10-Year New York City Wine and Food Festival. For the first time, Barclaycard Travel Community Members were able to meet in-person, compare travel notes and even make plans to meet up around the world – a testament to the growing Travel Community that Barclaycard US fosters.
As servers wove through the crowd, passing out delectable lamb meatballs in tomato sauce (with those cute little silver forks!) oxtail dumplings, and savory caviar on crisp polenta crackers, the light wines from Château D'Esclans was a delightful treat for guests to sip on while they forged real-world connections with online acquaintances.
Two James Beard Award-nominated chefs, John Tesar (from Top Chef) and JJ Johnson (from Minton's in Harlem) prepared a carnivorous menu, elegantly paired with wines from Southern Glazer's Wine & Spirits. Lo Bosworth made a special guest appearance and popped in the kitchen with star chefs.
“Any opportunity I get I travel,” says, Travel Community member, Georgee2016, with his 2,346 posts and 395 travel stories on everything from a church in the local Massapequa to Christmas in Bermuda, was eager to find fellow world wanderers.
“There's a great feeling knowing people are following you and knowing where
you're going,” he said as he tucked into the appetizer of West African Spiced Lamb Carpaccio.
Others love the Barclaycard Travel Community because it helps them document their travels. “I already had a personal journal and it was great to write where I was going up on the travel blog, and tag places for others to see and be helpful,” said emilyowayni, who's posted about everything from Prague to Nashville. Although she only got the Barclaycard Arrival Plus® World Elite Mastercard® recently, she appreciates the rewards – 2X miles on all purchases and 5% miles back toward the next redemption. As a matter of fact, she loves travel so much she's quitting her job in advertising to travel around the world with her boyfriend for five months in Southeast Asia – going to Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Singapore and Bali.
“I also like to read other people's stories and get ideas what to do,” she said.
Some people were honest about their generation's “avocado toast” values: “If you spend all your money on dining and travel then it makes so much sense to get a card," said MermaidN86, who has written about everything from cliff jumping in Dubrovnik to Croatian Wine Country (who knew?). She is also going to Vietnam for three weeks – and was excited to meet emilyowayni, going to the same place. (“I usually go on trips by myself,” she said.)
Of course with airlines constantly changing their mileage programs, everyone was relieved the Barclaycard Arrival Plus® World Elite Mastercard® miles never expire as long as your account is open, active, and in good standing –you can just buy a ticket on any airline at any time to redeem miles.
No matter how you travel – with significant others, alone, on short or long trips, spontaneous travel can get more difficult as you get older: “People have jobs, families, kids, responsibilities,” Georgee2016 said, which is why he psyched to contribute to the Barclaycard Travel Community. “There are so many places I like to go and everyone is busy,” he said, hoping to connect in the future with like-minded people.
Since he was named after a famous poet, he decided to pen a haiku summing it up:
“Barclaycard is me.
It will take you near and far.
The world is out there.”
Barclaycard Arrival Plus® World Elite Mastercard® and Barclaycard Travel Community are planning more member meet-up opportunities nationwide.
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*All content provided in this blog is supplied by Amy Kleins and is for informational purposes only. Barclaycard makes no representations as to the accuracy or completeness of any information contained in the blog or found by following any link within this blog.
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