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: Brendan van Son
Occupation: Travel Photographer and YouTuber
Hometown: Rocky Mountain House, Canada
Residence: None—I’m nomadic
College: University of Calgary
College major: Double: Political Science and Geography
Facebook: Brendan van Son
Google+: People still use this? +Brendan van Son
YouTube: Brendan van Son
Short bio: I’m a nomadic travel photographer originally from Canada. Travel is my life. I post daily videos about my life on YouTube.
How often do you fly? 2-3 times a month.
How many countries have you been to? 102
How many continents have you been to? Six (the South Pacific somehow alludes me).
Earliest travel memory: Eight-years old my family travelled did a massive six-week road trip from Canada to San Diego and back. I have lots of memories from that trip. I think it shaped me as a traveller.
Favorite American city: Is it cliché to say New York City?
Favorite international city: Cape Town.
Least favorite country: French Guiana.
I have no desire to go to: A real job.
Friendliest people in the world: Definitely Filipinos.
Country with the meanest immigration officers: Canada.
Favorite World Heritage Site: Kotor, Montenegro.
Favorite airline: Turkish Airlines.
Favorite aircraft type: Dreamlines by a mile.
Aisle or window: Window. What’s the point of being up there if you can’t see?
Favorite airport lounge: Istanbul’s Turkish Airlines Lounge.
Favorite U.S. airport: Houston.
Favorite international airport: Amsterdam.
Favorite hotel: Aria Budapest.
Favorite cruise line: Viking River Cruises.
Favorite travel credit card: American Express Gold travel rewards card.
Favorite island: Vancouver Island.
Favorite beach: La Cabanas Beach, El Nido, Philippines.
Favorite National Park: Los Glacieres National Park, Argentina.
Favorite fancy restaurant: Anywhere that does a really good sushi.
Favorite hole-in-the-wall: Tanjga—in Montenegro.
Favorite airport restaurant: Any airport lounge because I’m cheap.
Favorite bar: The Cave Bar in Menorca.
Favorite fruit: Kiwi
Favorite food: Sushi.
Least favorite food: Potatoes.
Drink of choice (in the air and on the ground): Gin and tonic.
Favorite travel movie(s): The Secret Life of Walter Mitty.
Favorite travel show(s): Departures.
Favorite travel podcast(s): Honestly…I’ve never listened to one.
Favorite travel book(s): I tend to read historical books related to the destination. “Feast of the Goat” was brilliantly done.
Right now I am reading: Mostly blogs.
Top 3 favorite travel newsletters/magazines/blogs: Afar, Nat Geo Traveler, Aperture.
Favorite travel website(s)—besides JohnnyJet.com, of course! Jellyjourneys.com
5 things you bring on a plane: Noise-cancelling headphones, laptop, camera gear, comfortable trousers, and a pen (to fill out immigration forms).
What do you always seem to forget? The pen.
What do you like least about travel? Packing. I. Hate. Packing.
What do you want your loved one to buy you from an airport Duty Free store? A giant Toblerone or candy.
Favorite travel app(s): Drone Mate, Google Maps.
Most embarrassing travel moment: Too many to count. I once had to poop on a busy street in Sao Paolo. But, can we not talk about that?
I’m embarrassed I haven’t been to: Australia or New Zealand.
Worst travel moment: Probably nearly dying of Malaria in The Democratic Republic of Congo. But, it’s also my best moment due to the kindness I received there.
What’s your dream destination? Greenland or anywhere in the South Pacific.
Favorite travel charity: The Giving Lens.
Best travel tip: Don’t focus too much on getting great photos. Enjoy it. You’ll forget you even took pictures eventually. But, you’ll never forget the moments.
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.