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: Terrance Zepke
Occupation: Author and Travel Talk Show Host
Residence: SC Lowcountry
Facebook: Terrance Zepke
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Short bio: I studied Journalism at the University of Tennessee and later received a Masters in Mass Communications from the University of South Carolina. I have studied parapsychology, which is the investigation of paranormal and psychic phenomena, at the acclaimed Rhine Research Center. I happily journey all over in search of adventure but always find my way home to the Carolinas. I live part-time in both states as I can’t decide whether I prefer the Outer Banks of North Carolina or the South Carolina Lowcountry. I like to stay busy so I am a travel agent, freelance travel writer, talk show host, and author of more than twenty-four books, including “Terrance Talks Travel: A Pocket Guide to South Africa,” “A Ghost Hunter’s Guide to the Most Haunted Places in America”, and “The Encyclopedia of Cheap Travel.”
The only thing I love as much as travel is writing and talking about it. I have been featured on NPR, CNN, The Washington Post, Travel with Rick Steves, Around the World, Good Morning Show, Associated Press, Publishers Weekly, The Learning Channel, AAA’s Go Magazine, and Travel Channel. When I’m not investigating haunted houses and hotels or poking around historic sites, I am probably doing laundry and planning my next adventure. Some of my favorite adventures include piranha fishing on the Amazon, shark cage diving in South Africa, camping and trekking in the Himalayas, and dog-sledding in the Arctic Circle. My most memorable experiences include getting stranded in Morocco and spending the night inside the creepy Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum while participating in a paranormal investigation.
How often do you fly? Too often!
How many countries have you been to? I stopped counting after 30!
How many continents have you been to? 7
Favorite American city: Charleston.
Favorite international city: London.
Least favorite country: I have places I probably won’t go back to but nowhere that I regretted visiting.
Friendliest people in the world: Africans.
Country with the meanest immigration officers: Egypt.
Favorite World Heritage Site: Jerusalem (old city).
Favorite airline: South African Airways.
Favorite aircraft type: I love any airplane where I end up in first class!
Aisle or window: Aisle.
Favorite airport lounge: SAA Cycad First Class Lounge (O.R. Tambo International Airport) is awesome complete with snooze rooms and rainfall showers.
Favorite U.S. airport: I haven’t found one yet!
Favorite international airport: I don’t really have a favorite but I am fond of London’s Heathrow Airport.
Favorite hotel: The Palace at the Lost City (near Johannesburg).
Favorite cruise line: Viking for Europe & Asia; Silversea for Alaska and Mediterranean; Royal Caribbean for Caribbean.
Favorite travel credit card: Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card.
Favorite island: Madagascar.
Favorite beach: Kiawah.
Favorite fancy restaurant: Rules, established in 1798, is oldest restaurant in London. I love the ambience!
Favorite hole-in-the-wall: Sloppy Joe’s in Key West.
Favorite bar: Chateau Marmont (Bar Marmont) in L.A.
Favorite fruit: Island Juice Bar is a little kiosk in Mallory Square (Key West) that makes über delicious fresh fruit milkshakes.
Favorite food: Frogmore stew (SC shrimp stew).
Least favorite food: I really don’t like caviar, but the worst things I’ve been served include worm larvae, roasted guinea pig, and pigeon pie.
Drink of choice (in the air and on the ground): I don’t drink when flying. I like to stick to herbal tea on a plane as it does help prevent jet lag and then I switch to Jamaica Red Stripe once on the ground.
Favorite travel movie(s): Out of Africa (Meryl Streep and Robert Redford).
Favorite travel show(s): Expedition Unknown.
Favorite travel book(s): “Without a Spare.”
Right now I am reading: “The Last Blue Mountains: Tales of a Traveling Englishman.”
Top 3 favorite travel newsletters/magazines/blogs: Travelzoo, GoWay Globetrotter, and Independent Traveler.
Favorite travel website(s)—besides JohnnyJet.com, of course! Jetsetter.com, Cruisecritic.com, and Lastminutetravel.com.
5 things you bring on a plane: Lifesavers (assorted flavors only), sleep mask, my Kindle, Emergen-C 1000mg Vitamin C (cranberry pomegranate) and Hershey’s Special Dark Chocolate Bar.
What do you always seem to forget? Bottle opener.
What do you like least about travel? Luggage.
What do you want your loved one to buy you from an airport Duty Free store? I like the local newspaper if in English and a silly souvenir magnet if available.
Favorite travel app(s): WordSearch Unlimited Free and I also like Localeur a lot, which has recommendations given by locals about what to see and do.
Most embarrassing travel moment: There are so many as I look back but right up there was losing control of my dogs while dog-sledding. I rounded a turn going too fast and I fell off the control bar and they kept going! When the dogs turned up without me someone was dispatched on a snowmobile to rescue me.
Worst travel moment: Crossing the treacherous Drake Passage on route to Antarctica was horrible as I was dreadfully seasick for two days.
What’s your dream destination? A gorilla safari in Rwanda or Uganda is at the top of my list.
Favorite travel charity: African Impact and World Wildlife Fund both work to protect natural habitats, save endangered species, and help communities conserve their natural resources.
Best travel tip: Embrace the experience! Realize that you have lost any control the moment you set foot on the plane, train, or boat. Come to the mindset that whatever happens is simply part of the adventure. You’ll be happy rather than frustrated once you realize this is part of the thrill. I have had some of the greatest adventures of my life and met some wonderful people as a result of getting “stranded” or having to take a detour during my travels.
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