Category Archives: Podcasts

Podcast #148 — Travel Potpourri for $200, Alex

Flying home into the teeth of the polar vortex that gave Chicago its coldest day since January 1985 took a bit of flight changing strategy and some incredibly dedicated United ramp workers. I get on-trend by “Kondo-ing” my old suitcases, worry about visiting Sweden as it rapidly goes cashless, and gather up some odds-‘n’-ends from […]

Podcast #147 — Holiday Travel Tips; Notes from Santa Fe

Trying to wrap up travel for the year so I can hunker down in the TravelCommons bunker outside of Chicago and not worry about any forecasted snow. But for those of you who are traveling, here’s an episode to keep you occupied in the airport, train, or car traffic. We talk about some travel tips that […]

Podcast #146 — Rental Demolition Derby; Traveler Gift Guide

Getting this posted just in time to give you something to listen to while jammed up in Thanksgiving traffic, be it on the road or in the airports. We talk about working the angles to maximize credit card benefits, which leads me to one more story from my fall trip to Europe — a rental […]

Podcast #145 — Restaurant Karma; Hotel Breakfasts

Just regular domestic business travel since the last podcast, trying to dodge Hurricane Florence to get back to Charlottesville.  Thinking back to last month’s European travels, we talk about a tight connection through Amsterdam and some odd concierge lounge rules, which gets me thinking about hotel breakfasts. And a listener request for restaurant recommendations gets […]

Podcast #144 — Outside Airports; Hospitality Mentality

Back in front of the mic after 12 days of skipping across northern Europe — Copenhagen, Brussels, and Scotland. In this episode, we get nostalgic about outside airports in California, talk about how a hospitality mentality is pervasive in hotels but not in restaurants, missing customer service responses from United Airlines and Marriott, and European […]

Podcast #143 — How Bad is Business Travel For Your Health; Make Layovers Fun

No long-distance travel this month. Instead, I”m getting back into regional jets, and waiting out a long delay in Cincinnati has me wondering about American Eagle’s flight scheduling algorithm. My flights into CVG cause me to think about the impact of losing hub status. CVG looks overbuilt, but MEM is spending money to shrink itself. […]

Podcast #142 — Sleeping in Business Class; Changes from Chinese Tourists

Yet another last-minute long-distance trip, this time to Frankfurt, Germany, lets me check out United Airlines’ new business class service, and think again about the value for those expensive lie-flat seats. Seeing a new Chinese menu at a favorite wurst stand in the old part of Frankfurt reminds me of the changes driven by the […]

Podcast #141 — When You Think the TSA is Bad…; Expired Money

A last-minute trip to Pune, India provided more than enough material for this episode — a visa dash, very hands-on airport security, worthless rupee notes, flight disruptions…. We also read the obits for a couple of smart bag companies and hear why MSP’s T2 isn’t so ghetto after all. All this and more at the direct […]