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: Barry Choi
Occupation: Personal finance & budget travel expert/TV news director
Pinterest: Barry Choi
Short bio: I’m a personal finance & budget travel expert based in Toronto. I provide practical money-saving tips to help you take that dream vacation, whether it’s adventure travel, a relaxing all-inclusive resort or backpacking through Europe. You’ll find useful common sense tips everyone should know, from avoiding currency exchange fees to taking advantage of free stopovers, I strive to help people travel on any budget.
In case you’re curious during the day I work at a TV Newsroom in Toronto where I specialize in personal finance, travel and news.
How often do you fly? I take 2 trips on average a year and depending on where I go, I’ll take anywhere from 2-6 flights per trip.
How many countries have you been to? 25
How many continents have you been to? 5
Earliest travel memory: Road tripping to the big nickel in Sudbury, Ontario, Canada.
Favorite American city: Portland for the food, LA for the vibe, New York for the shopping.
Favorite international city: Tokyo.
Least favorite country: I’ve yet to come across a country that I did enjoy in some way.
Friendliest people in the world: The Japanese.
Favorite World Heritage Site: Just about every temple, shrine, and, castle in Kyoto blew me away.
Favorite airline: Thai Airways. I flew them just once but I’ve never forgotten the service.
Favorite aircraft type: Doesn’t matter as long as it’s taking me somewhere awesome.
Aisle or window: Aisle, I much prefer to get up as I please.
Favorite hole-in-the-wall: Hashem Restaurant in Amman, Jordan. This place only sells three things: falafel, hummus and beans. I’ve yet to taste anything as good anywhere else in the world.
Favorite food: I’ve got a mild obsession with pizza.
Least favorite food: Peanuts, I’ve got an allergy.
Drink of choice (in the air and on the ground): Pepsi.
Favorite travel movie(s): Lost in Translation, Vicky Cristina Barcelona.
Favorite travel show(s): Departures.
5 things you bring on a plane: Ear plugs, cell phone loaded with TV shows, snacks, an extra pair of socks, hand sanitizer.
Favorite travel app(s): Google Translate.
I’m embarrassed but I haven’t been to: Australia.
Best travel tip: Have a rough itinerary, but be prepared for things to change. The best travel experiences are the ones you’re not expecting. Take the time to locals, you’ll learn so much more from than you ever will from a guidebook.
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
- Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 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 airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 80,000 points are worth $1,000 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 5X points on Lyft rides through March 2022. That’s 3X points in addition to the 2X points you already earn on travel.
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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.