Trip Reports Posts

The Hyatt Regency in Kyoto, Japan

After our delayed flight into Tokyo, we missed the flight we had originally scheduled to take us from Narita to Osaka, so we took a high speed train directly to Kyoto.  In retrospect, this was probably easier than our original plan which would have required a terminal change, another flight, ...

A Gastronomical Review of the Czech Republic and Romania

Of course, when my wife and I travel, the primary purpose is to see and do interesting things, but there is always a significant secondary consideration - we like to eat.  To us, eating traditional or locally popular dishes is a good way to experience the culture and history of whatever place ...

ANA First Class from Chicago to Tokyo Narita

International First Class on an Asian carrier; definitely one of the more exciting parts of this hobby.  I've flown ANA before, but never in First Class, so as we got on board, I had pretty high expectations.  I think for the most part these expectations were met, my main complaint was ...
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Tales of Transylvanian Castles, Kings, and Ruthless Dictators


The day had finally arrived - October 29, 2015, our 9th wedding anniversary, and the trip to Transylvania, and specifically to see Bran Castle aka Dracula's Castle, to celebrate that we'd been eagerly awaiting.  Why Bran Castle and Transylvania?  The "Dracula" legend is something ...
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The Old, The New, and The Ugly in Bucharest

The primary motivation for my wife and I's trip Romania was a road trip to Bran (aka Dracula's) Castle, but we did have a full day and a half day in the capital city of Bucharest on either side of that adventure.  Bucharest (BucureČ™ti) is a metropolis of roughly 2 million people and the 6th ...
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Trip Report: ANA Boeing 777 Economy Class, San Francisco to Tokyo

A few minutes prior to boarding time, I left the Singapore Airlines SilverKris Lounge and made my way to gate 94 where my ANA “Inspiration of Japan” Boeing 777-300ER was waiting. Boarding was delayed approximately 30 minutes due to the late arrival of the incoming aircraft so I just hung ...
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Hotel Review: Hotel Scala, Bucharest

Selecting a hotel in Bucharest creates an interesting conundrum for travelers.  Several of the major chains (Hilton, IHG, Marriott, Starwood) have a presence in Romania's capital city, so if you're a points junkie, you have ample options to choose from.  On the other hand, a little ...

Lounge Review: British Airways Concorde Room at New York JFK

British Airways operates from terminal 7 at New York's JFK airport. The British Airways Concorde Room at JFK is located airside adjacent to gate 1. Once you clear through the First Class Check-in and Fast Track security lane, keep to your left and walk past the waiting area for gate 1. This part of ...

Trip Report: Dragonair (Cathay Dragon) A330 First Class, Hong Kong to Beijing

Dragonair was recently rebranded by their parent company, Cathay Pacific, and will soon be called "Cathay Dragon." Oftentimes mislabeled as Cathay Pacific's "low cost carrier," Dragonair is actually Cathay Pacific's regional airline operating both narrow-body and wide-body Airbus aircraft to ...
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Getaway to Japan for a week

I traveled a lot in 2015; most of it was work travel, but I had some fun personal travel as well.  One of the best trips was to Japan with my wife.  We have wanted to go there for some time, and we finally were able to make it work.  We had some good experiences both while getting to ...
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Trip Report British Airways Boeing 747 First Class, New York to London

I'm just gonna cut to the chase and give you the spoiler. By first class standards, British Airways first class is not the best product. They aren't horrible by any means but for the price you pay in miles and cash (fuel surcharges and airport tax), British Airways first class leaves a lot to be ...
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Hotel Review: Archibald City Hotel, Prague

Our primary concern for our stay in Prague was proximity to the main sites in Old Town, along with being a reasonable distance from Prague Castle, either by foot or via mass transit.  Price was a secondary concern, though frankly, unless you're dead set on staying at one of the big chains, even ...

Diamonds Are a Traveler's Best Friend? Trying out Hilton again.

Even though Hilton gave away Diamond status a few months ago (link), I didn't really have any plans to take advantage of it.  I only decided to take the match at the last minute before the offer expired.  I recently had a trip where I couldn't find any availability without breaking the ...
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A Closer Look at Enchanting Prague Castle


Last week's post provided a 35,000-foot view of things to see and do in Prague if you have two days at your disposal.  Today, I'll take a more in-depth look at the attraction I'd say the vast majority of Prague visitors come to see, Prague Castle.  There is, of course, a castle ...
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Two Days in Prague, the City of Magic

Finally, time for our fall European adventure to begin in earnest.  Our bus ride from the airport brought us to the Prague City Center about 5 P.M., giving us roughly 48 hours in the beautiful City of Magic.  Our base of operations would be the Archibald City Hotel, located a few blocks ...

Texas-Oklahoma BBQ Brawl - Snow's vs. Leo's


Most sane people go watch a movie or find a happy hour when they get bored on a Saturday.  Me?  I drive 200 miles for lunch.  Yes, seriously.  That's my idea of fun.  And hey, it makes for a humorous "you did WHAT?!?!?!?!" reaction when I tell people about it.  ...

Flight Review: Air France Economy Class, Paris to Prague

After a fun morning walking around Paris, it was time for the short hop over to Prague, and the official start of our vacation.  Getting to Prague required a little bit of fancy footwork, as our cheap business class tickets wouldn't get us past Paris.  I tried numerous combinations, but ...

My 50th State, and other travel milestones

Maybe you have seen various surveys on Facebook tracking now many states people have visited.  At some point, I did some accounting, and realized that I was close to reaching all of the states.  I had been to 48 states, all but New Mexico and Idaho.  I had been meaning to make a trip ...
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