Want to know how to travel in style, just like the pros? We check in with frequent fliers to find out how often they fly, their favorite destinations and what they never leave home without.
Name: Anil Polat
Occupation: Blogger, computer security engineer
Residence: It changes, I move a lot
Facebook: FoXnoMad: travel smarter
YouTube: Anil Polat
Short bio: I’m a blogger and computer security engineer who writes about my travels, and tech, while trying to reach the goal of visiting every country in the world.
How often do you fly? 2-3 times per month, on average.
How many countries have you been to? Close to 90.
How many continents have you been to? 6
Earliest travel memory: My parents are journalists so it’s hard to remember a time before traveling!
Favorite American city: Seattle, Washington DC is a close second.
Favorite international city: Istanbul, then Berlin.
Least favorite country: All are remarkable in their own way.
I have no desire to go to: I want to go everywhere, then I can better complain about going in the first place when I’m an old man.
Friendliest people in the world: People everywhere are friendly, in their own way but Georgians, Filipinos, Egyptians, Albanians, and Uruguayans come to mind. Really, it’s a big city/country versus little one. Big cities tend to put people on guard, life is faster—there’s less time to be polite when you’re rushing through crowds.
Country with the meanest immigration officers: Canada and England seem to ask why you’re visiting like they’re confused as to why you would want to in the first place.
Favorite World Heritage Site: I dislike being singular, but if I have to choose, Socotra Island is quite spectacular.
Favorite airline: Singapore Airlines, Turkish Airlines, Iceland Air, and Austrian has really upped their game lately.
Favorite aircraft type: The bigger, the better.
Aisle or window: Window.
Favorite airport lounge: Malaysia Air, Kuala Lumpur.
Favorite U.S. airport: I like to eat and George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston has a lot of good food options open late.
Favorite international airport: Istanbul Ataturk, Vancouver International Airport for aesthetics.
Favorite hotel: The Oberoi hotel in Bangalore, India is over the top, but amazing.
Favorite travel credit card: Chase Sapphire Reserve.
Favorite island: Socotra.
Favorite beach: Boracay.
Favorite National Park: Shenandoah, Virginia.
Favorite fancy restaurant: I highly recommend Pinnochio’s in Pristina, Kosovo.
Favorite hole-in-the-wall: There is a guy selling homemade çiğ köfte (translation: raw meatball but it’s actually vegan) outside of the Spice Bazar in Istanbul, I try to find him every time I’m in town. In Prague, St. Martin.
Favorite bar: Bar Fun Fun, Montevideo, Uruguay.
Drink of choice (in the air and on the ground): Red wine.
Favorite travel book(s): “Long Way Round.”
Right now I am reading: “The Vital Question,” Nick Lane.
Top 3 favorite travel newsletters/magazines/blogs: WanderingEarl.com, TurkeysForLife.com, NomadicMatt.com.
Favorite travel website(s)—besides JohnnyJet.com, of course! Migrationology.com, YoldaOlmak.com (Turkish language), everything-everywhere.com, theplanetd.com, ottsworld.com.
5 things you bring on a plane: All of my electronics: noise-cancelling headphones, charged phone, tablet, laptop, and rechargeable batteries.
What do you always seem to forget? The time of my flight.
What do you like least about travel? Jet lag.
What do you want your loved one to buy you from an airport Duty Free store? Some kind of booze.
Favorite travel app(s): WiFox ☺
Most embarrassing travel moment: Asking a waitress in Spanish to turn up the salt when I meant turn down the volume.
I’m embarrassed I haven’t been to: Thailand.
Worst travel moment: The missed opportunities.
What’s your dream destination? The very next one.
Best travel tip: Traveling is easy, so keep it simple.
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 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
- 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide, eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
- Get 25% more value when you redeem for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel.
- Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on orders over $12 for a minimum of one year on qualifying food purchases with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
- Earn 2x total points on up to $1,000 in grocery store purchases per month from November 1, 2020 to April 30, 2021. Includes eligible pick-up and delivery services.
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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.