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: Robin Esrock
Occupation: Travel Journalist and TV Host
Hometown: Johannesburg, South Africa
Residence: Vancouver, BC
Short Bio: Robin Esrock is the co-host, creator, producer, and writer of the 40-part series Word Travels, seen on National Geographic International in 50 countries, and on Travel Channel International in over 100 countries and 21 languages. Filmed on 6 continents, each half-hour episode tracks an obsessive quest to find the next great travel story. Following a “wake-up call” bike accident in 2005, Robin’s journalism degree came in handy when he cashed in a modest insurance settlement to explore the world. Inspired by a pioneering blog, his “gonzo” stories have been published in over a dozen major newspapers and magazines worldwide, including The Chicago Tribune, The Guardian, South China Morning Post, Sydney Morning Herald and Dubai Gulf News. In Canada, Robin has been a national travel columnist for The Globe & Mail, MSN, the Vancouver Sun, among others. In 2012, Robin was chosen to be Master of Ceremonies at the prestigious Explorer’s Club Annual Dinner held at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York, sharing the stage with icons like Ken Burns and Jim Fowler. A sought-after public speaker, he also spoke in front of 2500 people at the world’s largest ever TEDx event. Robin’s first major book – The Great Canadian Bucket List – will be widely available in North America in fall 2013.
How often do you fly: Usually 2-4 times a month, although usual is not typical.
How many countries have you been to: 107 at last count.
How many continents have you been to: 6 (damn you Antarctica!)
Favorite American city: Black Rock City
Favorite international city: Buenos Aires
Least favorite country: Cuba: people are great, but politically things need to change.
Favorite World Heritage Site: Dougga, Tunisia
Favorite airline: Cathay Pacific
Favorite aircraft type: 777
Aisle or window: Window, so my elbows remain intact.
Favorite airport lounge: Singapore
Favorite U.S. airport: Missoula
Favorite international airport: Singapore
Favorite hotel: Soneva Gili in The Maldives
Do you unpack into the dresser/closet? Or live out of your suitcase? Who has time to unpack?
Favorite cruise line: Princess, but my experience is limited
Favorite island: Cook Islands
Favorite fancy restaurant: Wolfgang Puck’s Cut
Favorite hole in the wall: Any joint that serves nasi kander in Malaysia
Favorite fruit: Mango
Favorite food: Thai-Indian
Least favorite food: Three Squeak Dish (Google it)
Drink of choice (In the air and on the ground) Bloody Mary (with horseradish)
Favorite travel movie(s): The Spanish Apartment
Favorite travel show(s): Word Travels
Favorite travel book(s): The Sign and the Seal by Graham Hancock, it inspired me to travel.
Right now I am reading: Abundance: The Future is Better Than You Think by by Peter Diamandis and Steven Kotler. It will brighten up your day.
Top 3 favorite travel newsletters/magazines/blogs: Outside, National Geographic Magazine, Velvet Escape
Favorite travel website(s) – besides JohnnyJet.com, of course!: Matador, World Hum, Brave New Traveller
Five things you bring on a plane: Laptop, Kindle, iPad, Hoodie, Headphones
What do you always seem to forget: There’s no point rushing to have a good time.
What do you want your loved one to buy you from an airport duty free store? Hard liquor, preferably native to the country of origin, in an odd bottle.
Favorite travel iPhone app(s): Currency Converter, World Time, Wikipedia
Most embarrassing travel moment: Thinking I could heli-board on my first day. Good luck with that.
Worst travel moment: Having to use the bathroom at Lusaka’s Bus Station.
What’s your dream destination: Somewhere with warm nights, surrounded by good friends in good moods, exotic food, an open bar, welcoming locals, coconut trees, hammocks, and no mosquitos.
Favorite travel charity: Aki Ra Landmine Museum, Cambodia
Best travel tip: Never trust a wake-up call.