Forget Paris, skip school, other contrarian tips

These days, smart travelers are going off-peak and off the beaten path
My favorite column topic, by far, is the idea of contrarian travel, or traveling against the grain. It's my strategy for getting luxury for less.

Tags: 

For the best value, book direct

3rd-party sites have revolutionized travel, but their time has passed
For all their usefulness, third-party travel Web sites can be as much a burden as a boon. The conventional wisdom is to check three or four Web sites before purchasing travel services.

Tags: 

Is your passport really in order?

Some countries require passport be valid for 3-6 months from start of trip
I was recently in the Atlanta airport, headed for a flight to Tel Aviv, when I noticed something odd: a young man and his 3- or 4-year-old daughter were taken aside and asked to stand behind the security perimeter.

Tags: 

Avoid the Middle East? On the contrary

A key principle of my travel strategy, which I call “Contrarian Travel,� is to travel against the grain: Go off-peak, follow the dollar, look for distressed properties, eschew all trends — in general, look for the destinations and travel providers that need your business the most. Right now, the dollar is somewhat weak, especially in Europe, where it is currently...

Tags: 

Summer vacation: fly or drive?

Think carefully about transportation for your trip: A few scenarios
Summer is around the corner and families are looking forward to their vacations.

Tags: 

Airline bashing

Anyone who's ever opened a newspaper or flipped on a TV knows the national media is overwhelmingly anti-airline -- except, of course, for the flattering attention paid to the industry darlings:

Tags: 

Need a solution for travel fatigue? Click here!

Tips to fight the ills of long-haul flights
Jets are great. They allow eager travelers and hard-charging business people to travel thousands of miles in a matter of hours. Some of them get used to the stresses of "transmeridian travel" (a fancy name for travel across multiple time zones).

Tags: 

Shut up!

Cell phones are coming to air travel, that you can bet. Why, just last week Air France opened the Airbus door to ring tones, inane chatter and "Can you hear me now?" Beginning early next year, passengers on some of its routes will be free to use their cell phones in flight. It's only a matter of time before U.S. carriers follow suit.

Tags: 

It's easy to love Argentina

I have long been a contrarian traveler. I travel off peak, I go to out-of-the-way places and I look for full-service luxury on a penny pincher’s budget. Sometimes, I strike out. But usually, I travel in style and have a wonderful time. Recently, my travels took me to Mendoza, Argentina, where my contrarian strategy got me a fabulous vacation at a very reasonable price.

Tags: 

Freedom of choice

For years, I have heard people complain about the lack of choice in air travel. But now that Northwest has begun selling its choice coach seats -- for an extra $15 fee -- the moaning and groaning has just become louder. You'd think customers and pundits would be applauding. I certainly am.

Tags: 

Pages