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: Liz Halle
Occupation: Software Engineer & newbie Travel Blogger
Hometown: Williston, Vermont
Residence: San Antonio, Texas
College: Texas A&M University, St. Mary’s University (San Antonio)
College major: Management Information Systems, Computer Science
Facebook: Roaming Runner
Pinterest: Roaming Runner
Short bio: Liz Halle is a software developer, a marathoner, a world traveler, a food lover, and an avid cruiser. She has spent 16 years in the Information Technology field designing, writing and maintaining software. Whether for work or for pleasure, Liz is on the road about 100 days per year. Her favorite destination is the one she has yet to visit and her favorite souvenirs are edible.
How often do you fly? 25 flights/year.
How many countries have you been to? 29
How many continents have you been to? 4
Earliest travel memory: It’s not my earliest but it’s my favorite childhood travel memory—we drove from Vermont to Prince Edward Island, Canada and stayed on a dairy farm. I’ll never forget the beautiful red sand beaches.
Favorite American city: New Orleans—the food and people are incredible. My medal from a 2012 marathon hangs from Mardi Gras beads instead of a ribbon!
Favorite international city: Rome and Tokyo.
Least favorite country: Tough question. I have yet to go somewhere I’d never go back to. While not an independent country, I would have to say Martinique. My expectations of it being a mini-version of France did not match reality.
I have no desire to go to: Anywhere unsafe.
Friendliest people in the world: Chennai, India. I once wore a traditional sari and a woman stopped me on the street to adjust the shoulder and tell me I looked beautiful.
Country with the meanest immigration officers: USA, UK.
Favorite World Heritage Site: The San Antonio Missions (including the Alamo) in my home city of San Antonio, Texas. They were designated UNESCO World Heritage Sites in 2015 and now I can run by a World Heritage Site whenever I like.
Favorite airline: Singapore Airlines.
Favorite aircraft type: Anything double-decker.
Aisle or window: Window—I sleep well on airplanes and this way I don’t have to wake up if one of my aisle-mates needs to get up.
Favorite airport lounge: Admiral’s Club at Tokyo’s Narita Airport.
Favorite U.S. airport: SAT (San Antonio), because it means that I’m either on my way to a fun destination or coming home.
Favorite international airport: Singapore Changi (SIN).
Favorite hotel: IQ Hotel Roma in Rome, Italy. It has a vending machine for wine.
Favorite cruise line: Princess Cruises.
Favorite travel credit card: Citi AAdvantage Executive World Elite Card.
Favorite island: Barbados.
Favorite beach: The Baths at Virgin Gorda, USVI.
Favorite fancy restaurant: I prefer a hole-in-the-wall.
Favorite hole-in-the-wall: The Golden Fleece pub in York, England. Supposedly the place is haunted.
Favorite bar: The Dixie Chicken in College Station, Texas.
Favorite fruit: Coconut.
Favorite food: Lobster. I grew up in New England.
Least favorite food: Indian. I’ve spent so much time there I’m burned out on it.
Drink of choice (in the air and on the ground): In the air—pinot noir with the in-flight meal. On the ground—weissbier at the Chinese Tower in the English Garden in Munich, Germany.
Favorite travel movie(s): I don’t watch many movies.
Favorite travel book(s): Anything by Rick Steves.
Right now I am reading: “The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History” by Robert M. Edsel and Bret Witter.
Favorite travel website(s)—besides JohnnyJet.com, of course! National Geographic Traveler. I love the beautiful photography.
5 things you bring on a plane: iPad, a pen for customs forms, eye drops, fuzzy socks, lightweight jacket.
What do you always seem to forget? Enough toothpaste. I always end up buying some from wherever I travel to.
What do you like least about travel? Airport security.
What do you want your loved one to buy you from an airport Duty Free store? A bottle of Rémy Martin Louis XIII so I can give it to my husband for his 40th birthday next year.
Favorite travel app(s): Yelp, Uber, TripAdvisor.
Most embarrassing travel moment: First time renting a car overseas at Paris’ Orly Airport. Neither my husband nor I had driven a manual transmission since we were teenagers and it showed—we stalled out so many times getting out of the parking garage that the people behind us started honking. After that we got the hang of it and enjoyed 10 stall-free days in the French countryside.
I’m embarrassed I haven’t been to: Australia. I just haven’t got around to it yet.
Worst travel moment: Trying to understand an Immigration officer in Mumbai at 2 am while traveling by myself. He had my passport and I thought he wasn’t going to let me on my flight to London. I was so relieved when we got things cleared up (turns out he couldn’t find the stamp on my passport from when I entered India).
What’s your dream destination? The Maldives.
Favorite travel charity: The Ronald McDonald House provides support for families whose children need to travel to receive hospital treatment.
Best travel tip: Don’t put off traveling until you retire. I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve had fellow travelers who are 30-40 years my senior tell me, “Good for you for traveling while you’re still young.”
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