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: Roger Wade
Occupation: Founder and editor of PriceofTravel.com and OverwaterBungalows.net
Hometown: Los Angeles
Residence: Miami, but back on the road in 2016
College: Cal State Fullerton
College major: Economics, Finance
Facebook: Price of Travel
Short bio: My mother was born in Germany so I’d done two tours around Europe by the age of eight. I continued to travel as often as possible while working in the entertainment biz and later for the Daily Racing Form. Eventually I wanted to break into travel writing and I ended up getting a job with BootsnAll, and later became the Content Director there. In late 2009 I decided I wanted to create my own web properties so I left to start Price of Travel while traveling around Asia and Europe for over 3.5 years.
How often do you fly? I prefer any kind of ground transport to flying when I have time, but obviously there are times when you need to fly. I’ve been exploring the Caribbean this last year and I’ve done about 15 flights, mostly on jetBlue.
How many countries have you been to? About 90 but I don’t really count and I only mention it if asked because many people find it vulgar to count and brag.
How many continents have you been to? 6, and I doubt I’ll make it to Antarctica.
Earliest travel memory: I have a few vague memories of my first trip around Europe with family at the age of four, but they are hard to trust so some of them could be from the next Europe trip at age eight, which I actually do remember.
Favorite American city: New York City.
Favorite international city: Amsterdam.
Least favorite country: Jamaica was a disappointment, except for Negril.
I have no desire to go to: All-inclusive resorts, now that I’ve tried one and hated that style.
Friendliest people in the world: I find that most people are friendly once you get outside the big cities. If I had to choose one I’d go with India, which is helped by the fact that so many speak English and yet it’s incredibly exotic to us.
Country with the meanest immigration officers: They weren’t exactly mean, but I’ve never experienced the amount of security that I did boarding a plane out of Kathmandu in Nepal. Even in the security-frenzied US you usually only deal with one or two major checkpoints, but in Nepal it was more like five or six, including one at the base of the stairs leading onto the plane.
Favorite World Heritage Site: Angkor Wat in Siem Reap, Cambodia is probably the most impressive man-made thing I’ve ever seen.
Favorite airline: I take jetBlue whenever I can, and I’m quite fond of Air Asia for reasons other than pure comfort. Considering how cheap Air Asia flights are, it’s amazing how pleasant it usually is.
Favorite aircraft type: The bigger the better because I’m a big guy and the largest aircraft tend to have larger seats and more legroom.
Aisle or window: Always a window. I rarely have to get up during flights, and I actually still love to look out the window.
Favorite U.S. airport: Orange County Airport is unusually nice for a smaller airport.
Favorite international airport: Singapore deserves to win the title every year.
Favorite hotel: Marina Bay Sands in Singapore, but only based on a tour that included some time by the rooftop pool.
Favorite cruise line: I’ve only done one cruise, on Norwegian, and I liked it far more than I was expecting to.
Favorite travel credit card: Chase Sapphire Preferred.
Favorite island: Bali. Except for the traffic problems I think the place is amazing. I’m heading there again soon for a month.
Favorite beach: I’m not really a beach person, but I really like Little Vagator Beach in Goa.
Favorite fancy restaurant: I’m always budget-conscious so I only go to fancy places when invited. I enjoyed Smith and Wollensky in NYC.
Favorite hole-in-the-wall: I really love this tiny place called Pizza D’Oro in Costa Mesa, California, near where I grew up.
Favorite bar: M Bar in Portland, Oregon. It’s only lit by candles and it literally only fits about 12 people inside.
Favorite fruit: Strawberries in season.
Favorite food: Wood-fired pizza.
Least favorite food: I’m not one of those adventurous street-food eaters so I’ve no interest in eyeballs and other organ meats. If I’m going to eat things like that, put them in sausages.
Drink of choice (in the air and on the ground): I usually drink the cheapest local lager, partly because countless blind taste tests I’ve run with friends have shown that no one can tell the difference between almost any of them.
Favorite travel movie(s): Lost In America.
Favorite travel show(s): House Hunters International, but only the episodes where the people say they are confident that they made the right decision in the closing scenes.
Favorite travel book(s): “On The Road.” (cliche, I know).
5 things you bring on a plane: My phone, good earbuds and as many podcasts as I need for the duration.
What do you always seem to forget? Fortunately I don’t seem to forget anything with any regularity.
What do you like least about travel? Just like everyone else, I dislike economy airline seats and also the airport security process.
What do you want your loved one to buy you from an airport Duty Free store? Smirnoff’s vanilla flavored vodka.
Favorite travel app(s): The free version of TripIt is awesome.
Most embarrassing travel moment: Missing my flight from London to NYC because I thought it was flight 825 leaving at 11:15 am, when it was really flight 1115 leaving at 8:25 am.
I’m embarrassed but I haven’t been to: Hawaii, but I have my ticket and I’ll be there in about six weeks.
Worst travel moment: Getting pretty severe food poisoning at Tikal and then having to spend the next three days curled up by myself in a hotel room in Antigua, Guatemala, while I regained my strength and wits.
What’s your dream destination? I did the Ring Road in Iceland a couple years ago and I still can barely believe the place, so I can’t wait to go back again.
Favorite travel charity: I don’t know of many, but it’s hard not to like Passports with Purpose because they focus on tangible results instead of dreamy idealism.
Best travel tip: Be flexible with travel dates if possible and fly on Wednesdays for the lowest fares and smallest crowds. I always start by checking fares for Wednesdays because they are almost always the lowest, so you know what to compare the other days to. And as a cheapskate with a flexible schedule, I usually fly on Wednesdays on most longer journeys.
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