Friday, September 9, 2011

Cheap Flights?

This is a great video about flying Low Cost airlines! Its all in good fun!  My good friend Cath Andrews from Explore Italian Culture sent it to me! Thanx Cath!

If you fly low cost airlines, (especially Ryanair in the UK) then you will really relate to this video.
If you are not from the UK, these ladies are hilarious from Fascinating Aida.

I would love to see them live! They remind me of  my friend Rick Green's comedy troop from Canada - The Frantics!


Tuesday, September 6, 2011

A New Efficient Way to Board an Aircraft?

Could it be true? Is there a way to board an aircraft without the usual bumping, grinding and fighting for space in the overhead bins and the aisles?

According the the new TV show "This vs That" there is. It is called the "Steffen Method" and makes sense to me! Steffen is a scientist who was tired of the chore of boarding an airplane created a computer model that looks like it would work. "This vs That" tried it out!

Essentially it follows a diagram of boarding as follows:

  1. Start with families and people with special needs boarding first
  2. Fill every other row, starting from the back, with window passengers entering first, then middle seaters, then the aisle seaters.
Check out this video to see how the test went! 

As you can see it was quite successful! It took half the time the normal boarding takes! Now how can we get the airlines to adopt this method....and to be honest the passengers too. I don't think that people travelling together will want to board separately, but hey stranger things have happened!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

The Flight Experience in Singapore

On our recent trip to Singapore, Warren wanted to try the Number one rated experience on Tripadvisor for Singapore - the Flight Experience Singapore. So we booked it before we arrived in Singapore to make sure that we could do it.

Essentially this experience is a training simulator for a Boeing 737. Warren LOVED to fly, so this was a no brainer for us. It is expensive, but worth it. Warren actually did the "flying" and I observed from the jump seat.

The Flight Experience is located at the Singapore Flyer complex. We arrived a few minutes early to settle in.
We chose the 45 minute experience which gave Warren 2 take off and landings. He chose to take off and land from Toronto (our hometown) and from Las Vegas (go figure!).

The co pilot takes you through everything you need to know. I have to say that this was such a blast even from the jump seat. You really feel like you are in the cockpit of a real plane and Warren felt like he was flying a real plane!

As you can see in this video, we got to give the copilot a tour of Toronto, well the downtown core anyway.

We totally recommend this experience. We purchased the video that went along with it as a memento, it wasn't too expensive either. It includes the audio of what Warren and the Copilot said to each other.

Here is the website for the Flight Experience Singapore and see the reviews on TripAdvisor

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Hong Kong, Victoria Harbour and the Star Ferries

On a recent trip to Hong Kong, Warren and I decided to play tourist (ok fine we actually are tourists) and took the Star Ferry to Honk Kong Island from Kowloon and then boarded the Hop on Hop Off bus. On our last visit to Hong Kong we didn't see the sun once, this time however we didn't see many clouds or a drop of rain!

I took this photo as we were walking to the Star Ferry. You can see the Star Ferries and Hon Kong Island. The tall building is IFC - which used to be the tallest building in Hong Kong, until the ICC in Kowloon opened this year.

Click here for more information and travel facts about Hong Kong

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Thai Airlines new A380-800

Thai Airlines is the next airline to purchase the new Airbus 380 aircraft. This video shows beautiful this aircraft will be.

Royal First Class and Royal Silk Class will be located on the top level.

Royal First Class ares of the plane will include lie flat seats with 23 inch screens, a larger bathroom with a dressing area, a multi purposes area and a First Class Bar area. The in flight connectivity will include: mobile phones, SMS messaging and WiFi/Internet.

The Royal Silk Class Cabin (aka business class) will include smaller seats than first class, noise cancelling headphones, lie flat seating, a 15 inch screen and the same in flight connectivity. It will also have a bar area, and larger bathroom.

Economy Class Cabin will have 4 zones and 435 seats and take up the bottom level. It will have larger washrooms and a newly design Recaro economy class seat with 18 inch with 32 inch pitch.

Check it out for yourself here:

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Applying for a Chinese Visa as a Canadian

Warren and I decided that we are going to take a day trip from Hong Kong to Shenzhen China during our next visit to Asia...Warren wants to check out the electronics and I love an adventure so we thought "hey why not".. Especially since our friend Eric lives in Hong Kong and said he would show us around.

Eventually we want to tour China properly, but right now our schedules just won't allow for it.

Ok so what do we need to do to go to China for a day? First we need a plan, check that (Thanx Eric!) then we news to make sure we has the right paperwork. Since the China Olympics, you can no longer apply for a visa at the border from Hong Kong (especially if you are American). And a visa can take as long as a week if you apply in Hong Kong.

So where did that leave us? Applying at the Chinese Consulate at home in Toronto. Ok not a big deal I guess... The consulate is open from 9:00 am to 11:30 am and 1:30 to 3:00 pm from Monday to Friday... We needed to have a valid passport, a filled out application form and passport photos. Check, check, check.

So off to the city I went. I got there before 9 am and there was a line up that seemed to go on forever. I found a parking place and off I went... The line took about an hour.

As entrepreneurial as the Chinese are, they even had a photo service if you came without your photos.

The process is pretty straight forward. I dropped it off and then had to pick it up in 5 days. Okie dokie.

Well today is the day I am supposed to pick it up. It's hot and the line seems longer!

It is interesting looking around though. There are lots of different people. Chinese nationals renewing their passports. Retired people getting ready for the trip they have been looking forward to for years. Chinese Canadians planning a trip home to see family. Some business men. Company representatives of companies who will do the whole process for you for a fee. Students.

So that brings me to where I am right now. Waiting to pick up our passports. Been here almost an hour... It's REALLY hot and I think my parking is about to run out!

I made it out in an hour again, with one minute to spare on the parking. We are now the proud owners of a Chinese Single Entry Visa, valid until September. Overall it wasn't a big deal, just a lot of lines and waiting. I hope that visiting Shenzhen is worth it! We will report back!

Tip: when picking up bring a money order. The line is much smaller... That's where the businessmen were!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Location:Chinese consulate toronto

Friday, April 1, 2011

Some great Aprils Fools Jokes in the Travel World today!

Today I have been having a great laugh watching all the April Fools jokes the Travel folks have been pulling.
Here are a few of my favs


Deb and Dave's was good too - Flight to Space for them! Giant News

Then there is Gadlings Ugly Truth - The Ugly Truth

Some Non Travel gags:

Google translation for Animals:

Translation for Animals

and their new Google Motion feature:

Google Motion

Monday, January 31, 2011

Mileage Run for Frequent Flyer Points

@Globetrooper posted this on their facebook page this morning and I couldn't stop laughing. It sounds like a conversation in our house. Warren LOVES status miles. He does what he can to get them. He hit SuperElite status with Air Canada and the Star Alliance network last year and again for this year. Some people think he is crazy, but it really does make travel easier and more fun. I can't remember the last time we sat in coach as he has a ton of upgrade coupons etc with his status (and mine as I have Elite status).

Are you obsessed with frequent flyer miles and status points? Share with us in the comments!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Photo of the Week - Monks at the Wat Pho Temple in Bangkok

While in Bangkok, we toured the Grand Palace with a private guide. It was an amazing experience for us, as she is a Buddhist and really wanted to share her beliefs with us. We made offerings and enjoyed the temples, the Reclining Buddha and watching the school kids enjoy their day trip to their Grand Palace.

We enjoyed taking photos, and admiring the beauty of the palace and the temples. There are over one thousand Buddha images, including the famous Reclining Buddha.

While resting and enjoying the temple, we were privileged to experience the Monks come into the temple and start their meditations. It was peaceful and a highlight of our trip to Bangkok.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Photo of the Week - Las Vegas on New Years Eve.

OK, so this week's photo of the week isn't anything beautiful or spectacular, unless of course you love crowds and New Years Eve! This past holiday season, we chose to rent a house in San Diego, spend a few days in LA (Montana had never been to LA) and spend New Year's in Las Vegas.

We had ALWAYS sworn we wouldn't go to Las Vegas for New Years, but this year we thought "Why Not?" We had a blast!

We started with dinner at Craftsteak at the MGM (that is where we were staying), which was amazing and way better than any other time we had eaten there. We then took our hats, blowers and champagne out to the strip.

The Las Vegas strip closes on New Years Eve to traffic from 5 pm until 5 am. (This makes traffic a nightmare) There were DJ's blasting great music and music videos and people everywhere. We were told there were over 325,000 people on the strip! It didn't feel overly crowded though.

Just before midnight a girl in the crowd let her champagne cork loose, and the bottle was pointed at my butt :-). Before I knew it I was covered in Champagne, oh well, when you are with 325,000 people celebrating the new year, then you can't expect not to get a little wet!

For the countdown to midnight, the large screens on the hotels starting counting down, midnight came and there was an uproar from the crowd.  $500,000 of fireworks were launched off the roofs of the major hotels and everyone was excited and happy!

We are really glad we did this for New Years Eve. I don't think we need to do it again though. We like Las Vegas when it is nice and quiet.

How did you spend your New Year's Eve? Comment Below: