Year in Review_editedEvery year, when I look back at my photo gallery, I pinch myself and shake my head in disbelief. All my travels feel like a dream, especially since I not only used to be afraid to fly but afraid to leave the house. Now, it’s difficult to keep me in my house for more than a week!

I flew 97 times in 2014 for a total of 129,000 miles on 19 different carriers and visited 17 countries as well as 15 states. Here’s the link to my flight log.

I had so many travel highlights this past year that I don’t even know where to begin so I’m highlighting them by the month.


I was bouncing back between California, Toronto, New York and Florida. I visited Florida a lot in early 2013 because my dad was living there and broke his back, falling on the beach. My favorite trip, besides spending time with him, was to Marco Island.


In February, I was in Las Vegas, Florida and California twice. I was even on the Today Show the same amount of time in three days – here’s one of those segments. Oh, and my favorite trip was probably to the Four Seasons Las Vegas.

I was slow to travel internationally in 2013 but I picked up the pace in March when I flew to Berlin via Zurich on SWISS to attend ITB, the world’s largest travel conference. On the way back, I spent a couple of nights in London at the new ME Hotel, where a welcome note was written with lipstick on the bathroom mirror, which was a first!

In April, I went back to Europe but this time with my beautiful bride. We spent three nights in Monaco and four nights in Paris at one of the world’s swankiest hotels … The Four Seasons Hotel George V. Another highlight of that trip was having three meals in three countries in one day.

My big trip in May was to Memphis to speak at the PRSA conference. It was my first time to Tennessee and I really enjoyed seeing some of Elvis’ hotspots like Sun Studios and Graceland.

June was my best travel month. I began the month flying to Southampton, England to attend the naming ceremony for Princess’ Royal Princess ship and the ship’s godmother was The Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton. Then I met Natalie at Heathrow and we flew to Kenya to go on a Micato Safari. It was Natalie’s first time to Africa and my first time in East Africa. Highlights were seeing the Big Five, getting a first look at Richard Branson’s Kenya safari camp Mahali Mzuri and going on a hot air balloon safari in Tanzania.

And if that wasn’t enough, I then flew back to Europe and went on an eight-day Scenic River Cruise down the Danube. Insane!

On July 1, I flew to Toronto to celebrate Canada Day with my wife and then drove across the border to celebrate our Independence Day on the Fourth of July a few days later. My big trip was to San Francisco where I got to check out the America’s Cup pavilion.

In August, I chilled in California and Connecticut. The only trip Natalie and I took was a road trip to San Diego to attend GBTA and a Yankees game!

In September, I lived like a rock star. I flew Los Angeles to London on British Airways’ new A380 and got upgraded to one of their first class suites, then stayed at the Langham London. A few days later, I met my wife in Heathrow and we flew to Belfast so we could spend her birthday week in a country she’s always wanted to visit.

In October we traveled by train from Northern Ireland to Ireland and stayed at three swanky hotels. Our favorite was Ballyfin. We flew back to North America on a British Airways 787 – it was my first time on this new aircraft and it was pretty sweet. I later visited Mississippi for the first time to give a speech in south Florida. But my most significant flight in October was flying back to L.A. and learning that there was a fallen soldier on my flight. I went home and wrote a story and posted a short video about this incredibly emotional and moving experience. Both quickly went viral. Pretty much every media outlet picked it up and I did interviews for CNN, FOX, NPR … The video alone had over two million views on YouTube. It was also featured on the homepage of Yahoo and AOL. The response to this story was overwhelming and I was privileged to be among the passengers who escorted a fallen soldier home to his family.

I spent most of November on the West Coast. Highlights were going to Oakland and Sausalito to stay at Cavallo Point Lodge. But the real thrill was taking my dad to Las Vegas for his 85th birthday – we stayed at the Aria and he loved it.

In early December, my dad and I went back to Las Vegas – this time with Expedia to take part in one of MasterCard’s priceless moments. We got to play golf with a touring PGA pro! Then I flew to Toronto and a day later, Natalie and I flew to London for the night to see her family. The next day, we flew to Germany to board a Viking River ship to go on a Christmas market cruise. I was in four countries in four days and then three more countries the following few days (Austria, Slovakia and Hungary). We had an amazing trip, month and year and we finished it off in style … in Hawaii!

I look at these photos and reread the posts and I shake my head in disbelief. Never in my wildest dreams did I ever think I could turn my passion into my full-time job and I realize that without you readers, I would be nothing and none of this would be possible. So a heartfelt thank you, thank you, thank you for your support. I hope you have an amazing holiday and a happy New Year!

FYI: If you want to stay in the know, I now have two other newsletters in addition to my weekly one. Last year, I launched a Travel Deals newsletter to notify subscribers any time there’s a really good deal like last week’s fare from New York to Europe for $200 one-way (including taxes) and a few months ago, I launched a Daily Travel Tip newsletter. You can sign up to any or all of them here.



Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
  • Enjoy new benefits such as a $50 annual Ultimate Rewards Hotel Credit, 5X points on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3X points on dining and 2X points on all other travel purchases, plus more.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel.
  • With Pay Yourself Back℠, your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories.
  • Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on eligible orders over $12 for a minimum of one year with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
  • Get up to $60 back on an eligible Peloton Digital or All-Access Membership through 12/31/2021, and get full access to their workout library through the Peloton app, including cardio, running, strength, yoga, and more. Take classes using a phone, tablet, or TV. No fitness equipment is required.

The comments on this page are not provided, reviewed, or otherwise approved by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

Editorial Note: The editorial content on this page is not provided by any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

2 Comments On "Johnny Jet's 2013 Year In Review"
  1. Robert Bruce|

    Your travel experiences, especially those with your family, are very impactful. I just started reading your blog, and this story caught my attention. All of the things you’ve done during the year with and for your family, it’s priceless stuff.

    I was wondering if you ever plan last minute trips or if your adventures are mostly planned in advance. I understand something like a safari can’t be last minute necessarily. I ask because it is one of my favorite things to do – spring a surprise trip on family, especially a road trip.

    Thank you for your blog. Happy New Year.

    1. Johnny Jet|

      Thanks for the kinds words. A lot of my trips are last minute and I mean minute! I once booked a mileage ticket from a cab on the way to the airport.

Leave a Reply

Required fields are marked *