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  • hardie karges 12:59 pm on March 22, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Air Asia, airlines, , , budget, cell phones, , , ,   

    W*sh Lists and Sh*t Lists: E-kit, Hostel World, Air Asia, B of A… 

    IMG_0549Every once in a while, when travel and inspiration are slow, I feel like I should update my publicly accessed info just once for the record, and one for the road. For one thing, companies and businesses that I once supported and promoted, for free, no longer provide the service that I once endorsed. For another thing, I myself may no longer provide the service(s) that I once worked so hard for. Things change. Get over it. Life goes on. It’s a big world. Good luck out there…

    First, the bad news—my sh*t list. It gives me no pleasure, I assure you, to diss companies that once provided a valuable service at a reasonable price, and there’s no reason why they can’t do so again. But sometimes they’re slow to get the message and change their business plan, so there needs to be a public airing of grievances…

    Now if this just seems like a way to get back at companies that I feel may have done me wrong, I should mention that sometimes I patronize companies just for the purpose of testing their waters, whether I truly need them or not, and many times far beyond the bounds of necessity, just for the sake of loyalty, curiosity and convenience… (More …)

    • Esther Fabbricante 2:06 pm on March 22, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      Trouble, trouble. I’m staying home – as you already knew.

  • hardie karges 9:20 pm on July 8, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: airlines, Bad Words, , , Jason Bateman, movies   

    Hyper-Travel Hardie’s In-Flight Movie Awards: and the winner is… 

    View from above

    View from above

    I also dabble in film, and am threatening to specialize in it, so welcome the opportunity to organize my own private little Oscars ceremony. For me as an inveterate and veteran traveler, that can only mean one thing (cue drum roll): the in-flight entertainment awards. I figure one long flight per year is just about enough to keep tabs on Hollywood’s finest.

    Now I don’t pretend to have the broad vision (pun) nor country smarts of the legendary Joe Bob Briggs of drive-in movie fame. Nor do I pretend for a minute that in-flight movies constitute the ad hoc genre that drive-in movies once did, creating its own star directors and actors in the process, e.g. Roger Corman et al.

    Nor will it ever, though tapes then DVD’s have been taking up the slack for the last decade or two, and the Web is certainly grist for the mill, so stay tuned. Car back seats aren’t what they used to be, anyway (been trying to get this crick out of my neck for forty years now, damn Volkswagen)…

    (More …)

    • Esther Fabbricante 10:01 pm on July 8, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      I showed my daughter, Fran, this post today- She and her husband are visiting from Woodstock, GA.
      When will you be home?

    • hardie karges 12:28 am on July 9, 2014 Permalink | Reply

      Mississippi? Very possibly September. Want to meet up?

  • hardie karges 12:21 am on December 2, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: airlines, , free flights, ,   

    Dynamic Pricing, Dynamic Booking, Dynamic Travel (part 2) 

    The new gap year is 55

    The new gap year is 55

    I’m not a travel hacker, not really. I enjoy the places, not the interfaces. And traveling in coach is just fine with me, thanks. As a matter of fact, I do much of my traveling BY coach—bus, that is. I went all over Mexico and Central America before I ever crossed an ocean thirty-five years ago. And the only time I’ve ever flown first class was when they bumped me up for free. Now don’t get me wrong: I’m an avid collector of frequent-flyer miles, but I’d have to have an awful lot before I’d waste them on a fluffy first-class seat, the typical stuff of many travel-hackers.

    Everybody knows about airline prices these days and how screwy they are, different prices for every passenger, depending on who what when and where they bought it (from). Strangely enough some of the same games carry into the ‘frequent-flyer’ booking process. For example, for my upcoming trip, to Central and sub-continental Asia, I figured to start in either India or Sri Lanka (I’ve never been to either, strangely enough, and I plan to go to them all). That costs 90K frequent-flyer miles from LA, either way you go, east or west. But Bangkok is only 65K, and I can take a stop in Colombo, SL, for free. Huh? An extra stop for fewer miles? Okay. Works for me.

    Of course, as long as you’re returning back on the same route/direction from where you came, you can stop at any one of a number of major hubs (no RTW allowed; too romantic, I guess, so worth more), and the fact that BKK is much closer to LAX straight over the Pacific—rather than the usually much-more-expensive Atlantic-Europe-subcontinental route—seems to make no difference.

    So I got an eight-hour layover in Munich (where I’ve never been) on the way over, and two weeks in Istanbul on the way back. Flights to India from BKK are cheap on Air Asia, one of the region’s best bargains (despite their affiliation with ex-Thai PM Thaksin Shinawatra). There’s only one problem. I’ve got less than 63K miles, so short a couple thou.

      (More …)

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