Delayed Again? Your Flight Survival Kit

It doesn't take something as extreme as a plane breaking open to cause flight delays. A missing flight crew, bad weather, or just bad luck can leave you stranded in the purgatory of the airport where time drags on and there's nothing but nitrate-choked fast food nearby for sustenance. It happens to the most organized of travelers, even those with spotless karma. Here's how to make the best out of a bad situation. ...more

I used to be an iPad hater, but when my flight in ORD was canceled after traveling for hours ...more

What Keeps You From Traveling? If These Bloggers Can Travel, Maybe You Can Too

Seeing the world. For so many "grown-ups", the idea of the gap year, bugging out, putting it all in storage is the stuff of post-college. Youthful 20-something types who don't care about carrying a pack or sharing a dorm room get to do this, not people with responsibilities or jobs. For those of us with homes and families and obligations, it seems so far out of reach. Now that we're 30, or 40, or 50 ... it's just not something we can do. I will never tell you that everyone cantravel even while I believe that everyone should travel -- that it makes us better humans. There are a million good reasons why you might not be able to travel. I believe that. But often, the reasons people give for not traveling are a reflection of their priorities, not actual obstacles. ...more

I know I'm finding this article late, but thanks for writing it! I'm 25 and married, but even ...more

Travel Memories: Are You So Busy Taking Photos That You Forget to See Your Vacation?

Take photos, but pay attention first:  A lot of tourists who go to the floating market snap photo after photo without paying attention. Trust me, you can't take the sound and excitement home unless you pay attention first. If you sit near the bridge area on the southeastern side, you can watch the vendors paddling back and forth, and sometimes you might see conversations, laughter, interactions that could tell you a lot about the local culture. -- .:passion and light:. ...more
for me (i shoot too) when we are on vacation, the camera seems like an intrusion on my trip so i ...more

What It's Like to Be on a Press Junket

This morning at the breakfast buffet, I did something a little weird. After I'd emptied the rest of the sugar packet into my second cup of coffee, I filled the little brown package with salt, folded it in half, and tucked it into my wallet. That seemed a better thing to do than stealing borrowing the cheap plastic salt shaker, though I suppose I could have just asked the waitress, who surely has seen restaurant patrons do odder things in her time, for a dish of salt. ...more

Thanks for the great tips and excellent links. I haven't been on a press trip yet, but it's ...more

May 2nd is National Play Your Ukelele Day!

I play the ukulele. It's been about five years now. The ukulele started me towards a love affair with Hawaii, found me a whole lot of excellent new friends, helped me deal with my stage fright, saved me from expat angst, and let me pretend, just for a few hours, that I was a rock star. The ukulele is freaking awesome. ...more

1st, your YouTube vid is just plain swell. :-)

I am now ordering a Cd of Jake Shimabukuro ...more

Vacationing in a Yurt: Fun to Say, Fun to Stay.

In the Washington State Park system, there are a handful of places that offer you more than a flat patch of dirt on which to pitch your tent. You can rent a yurt, a little round house on a platform, complete with bunk-beds, outlets, and oh, my, electric heat. A few springs back, we spent a delightful weekend on the south Washington coast, caring not about the weather, which was (this being Washington State) completely unpredictable. We also stayed in a yurt with a billion-dollar view in Hana on the island of Maui -- this one had a little kitchenette and, just outside, a bathroom that was private but open to the sky. It was indeed paradise, possibly the quietest place we've ever stayed, the sound of the ocean interrupted only by the sound of the rain on the little skylight dome. ...more

It's kinda far, but we did a day trip to Cambria while we were there. Very cute, but most ...more

The All-Electric Road Trip: Is It Possible?

In the course of a year, we find ourselves buzzing down the stretch of highway that leads from Seattle to central Oregon maybe a dozen times, give or take a trip or two. With the assistance of things like Yelp and Urban Spoon, we've learned where to get the best sandwich, where you can get a huge slab of cake with your coffee and where to ask for Korean food instead of reading the menu that the diner waitresses give you. We make this trip in our fairly fuel-efficient car, a Pontiac Vibe that we bought a few years ago. ...more

Go to Iceland for the Fireworks (Just Avoid the Volcano Smoke)

WOW! The planet is showing us who's boss, that's for sure. The global web of airplanes has been brought to a halt because of a volcanic outburst in Iceland. Chaos is reigning across Western Europe [today], with hundreds of flights canceled due to volcanic ash sweeping across the continent. The pulverized rock and glass from the Icelandic Eyjafjallajokull glacier volcano is harmful to the engines of airplanes, apparently. -- Gizmodo (Go on, for fun, say the name of that volcano out loud: Eyjafjallajokull.) WOW! ...more

Actually, it was the eruptions in the early 1970s that first brought Iceland's intense volcanic ...more

Rant: Travelsphere, Knock It Off, Already!

I'm editorially cranky. This doesn't mean that I have perfect grammar or I never make a typo, but I am hugely impatient with a handful of ubiquitous travel publishing sins, made up words, fake philosophical arguments, and marketing ploys. More and more, I feel myself reaching for a virtual red pen to mark up the travelsphere (see, that's a fake word right there, I get the irony) in order to correct some of these travesties. Below, seven things that Drive Me Crazy when it comes to travel on the web. ...more

Back in my hoity toity travel snob "real" backpacker days, I shunned the term *tourist*. I was a ...more

Don't Let Bad Weather Ruin Your Travels

Weather, it's such a critical -- and uncontrollable companion in our travels. We pack for it, plan for it, pick activities that are right for it and sometimes, because it's weather, there's no cooperation from the other side. Pick a snowy mountainside where it's meant to be deep powder or a beachy tropical place, or anything in between, drop the temperature into the 50s or below, and add rain... your day out doors is, well, it's not how you'd planned, is it? Still, you're on vacation, what are you going to do? Any number of things, it turns out. ...more

We have had quite a few terrible weather vacations. It's amazing, when pushed, how you can find ...more