Johnny Jet's Travel Blog

Travel blog featuring best travel sites, travel deals, travel guides, effective travel tips, daily stories with up-to-date travel information, travel pictures, travel webcams. For more, visit my travel portal, www.johnnyjet.com.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

India Update

I’m in India and safe. I was supposed to be at the Taj Hotel in Mumbai tomorrow night. It’s crazy/scary/sad/disturbing. I'm changing my plans now. Yesterday, I visited The Taj Mahal one of my lifelong dreams. Today is a nightmare.

Monday, November 24, 2008

TRAVEL PRODUCT OF THE WEEK: JumpseatBags.com

JumpseatBags.com
Are you looking for a unique travel gift for the holidays? Well, check out these new Jumpseat Bags (available at JumpseatBags.com) from the makers of Sky Belts and Plane Wear Apparel. They’re created by the daughter of an airline pilot and are made from vintage aircraft seat fabric, so they’re not just hip and handy – the reused materials make them perfect for the eco-conscious consumer.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport

For Atlanta travelers at the Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, 3M Privacy Filters (3MPrivacyFilters.com) is creating an Airport Haven on November 25–26,2008—two of the busiest travel days of the year—in the Executive Conference Center on the 3rd floor of the Atrium between the North and South terminals. Stop by to enjoy a privacy oasis with free wi-fi, snacks and massages between 8 am and 5 pm. My good buddy Chris McGinnis who writes the TICKET newsletter (Travelskills.com) will be there answering questions.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

SOUTHWEST AIRLINES TO OPERATE AT LAGUARDIA?

Southwest Airlines (Southwest.com) confirmed today that it has submitted a bid that would allow the airline to assume ATA Airlines’ rights to operate at New York’s LaGuardia (LGA) Airport through a purchase of ATA Airlines. The bid was submitted in connection with the publicly announced auction process in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Indianapolis and consistent with the Federal Aviation Administration’s recent rule clarification regarding LaGuardia’s slots.
Southwest is working with ATA Airlines with respect to the terms and conditions of the bid. The bid does not contemplate operating ATA, but it is intended to allow Southwest to acquire the LGA slots.

The $7.5 million bid seeks to obtain the rights to 14 slots at LaGuardia that are currently held by ATA Airlines, which filed for bankruptcy protection on April 2, 2008. Those 14 slots would permit an operation of up to seven daily roundtrip flights at LaGuardia. Southwest would not acquire, as a part of its bid, any aircraft, facilities, or employees of ATA.

"It is our intent, with the successful conclusion of the transaction, to make plans to initiate service from LaGuardia," said Southwest’s Chairman, President, and CEO Gary Kelly. "Even in this volatile environment, we have said we must monitor the competitive landscape and take advantage of prudent market opportunities."

The bankruptcy court must approve the bid and a reorganization plan for ATA Airlines before Southwest could gain the rights to ATA’s LaGuardia slots.

Once the acquisition is finalized, Southwest will work with the Federal Aviation Administration and the Port Authority of New York to commence service at LaGuardia, including acquisition of the necessary airport gate(s) and facilities. Details on the commencement of service or the cities that would be served by Southwest from LaGuardia have not yet been determined.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

WEBSITE OF THE DAY: Photofunia.com

Photofunia.com
Do you want to freak your friends out? Of course you do! This website will help you do just that and more as it lets users create incredible backdrops that will make you (or a friend!) look like a rockstar in two simple clicks. It’s free, quick and no registration is necessary. You definitely have to check this out!

Monday, November 17, 2008

TRAVEL PRODUCT OF THE DAY: PlaneQuiet Platinum

PlaneQuiet Platinum
I’ve received a few emails lately from people asking for gift ideas for friends and family members who love to travel. Most seasoned travelers already carry noise-canceling headsets. Bose is the industry leader but they’re also the most expensive at $300 a set. My big gripe with these headphones is that they’re bulky and since I rarely check bags, I have limited carry-on space. However, many globetrotters can’t bear the thought of leaving home without them. So, if you’re contemplating these as a gift but don’t want to shell out three bills, then there’s an alternative. A company called Outside the Box Group has been making noise-canceling headphones for about six years and their newest model is the PlaneQuiet Platinum. They’re $200 less than the big name models. The pros are that they’re comfortable to wear and have good sound quality. But ... and it’s a big but ... they don’t cancel out all the noise from the engines and loud seatmates as well as their competitors’ products. But they’ll do the trick, they’re FAA-compliant and they’re compatible with iPods, MP3 players, DVD players and laptop computers. Available at: ProTravelGear.com for $99.95.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

WEBSITE OF THE DAY: Flickr.com

Flickr.com
Flickr I’m sure you’ve heard of this photo sharing website but just in case you haven’t, here it is. President-Elect Barack Obama recently brought it to my attention again. Whether he received your vote or not, you have to respect his love of technology and his openness. For starters, he and his team created a Flickr channel, which has tons of behind-the-scenes photos, including some from election night. He’s also created the site Change.gov to keep the world up-to-date on what he and his party are up to.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

WEBSITE OF THE DAY: Liftopia.com

Liftopia.com
It seems like there’s a website for anything and everything these days. However, I didn’t realize that there was one solely for getting discount lift tickets at major resorts across the country. You have to do some price comparisons – check the resort’s website as well (yes, I’m sure they have one – just Google it). http://www.johnnyjet.com/google.html Liftopia’s prices could be substantially cheaper but keep in mind that you’re required to pay online and there are no refunds or changes allowed. The tickets are only good for the dates specified. Just bring your ID and a printout to pick up the tickets at will call. It also allows users to register so they can get e-mails about last-minute deals.

Monday, November 10, 2008

TRAVEL PRODUCT OF THE WEEK: TSA-approved Samsonite Checkmate Business and Casual Laptop Bags

TSA-approved Samsonite Checkmate Business and Casual Laptop Bags
When the TSA announced that they were going to allow approved carry-on bags so travelers didn’t have to take their laptops out while going through security, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on one. Thanks to Staples (the office supply superstore), who sent me one of their TSA-approved Samsonite Checkmate Business and Casual Laptop Bags ($79.99), I was able to test them out. The bags all have several compartments and they all have a designated laptop-only section that completely unfolds to lie flat on the X-ray belt. It makes airport screening so much easier. And all the TSA officers I spoke to said they’d heard about them but that this was the first time they’d seen one. So they were just as excited as I was. I thought they would ask me to take the laptop out but they didn’t.


In fact, I have used it four times now and have had no problems whatsoever. Although, I do get a lot of evil stares from travelers behind me who think that I’m going to hold up the line when they tell me to pull my laptop out. But each time I clear security, those expressions change to something more like, Dang, he’s way too cool! Where can I get one of those bags?


The reason these bags are TSA-approved is because the special designs allow for clear imaging of the devices when moving through the X-ray machine; the rest of the bag’s contents can be put in adjacent compartments. After you quickly pass through the security checkpoint, just quickly fold the bag upright and zip it up. It’s that easy.


Obviously, I definitely recommend this to everyone who travels with a computer, especially since it will not only speed up the security line but you won’t ever leave your laptop behind or damage it like I have in the past. Trying to shove your computer back in your bag while you’re making a mad dash for the plane isn’t healthy for the laptop. FYI: Samsonite isn’t the only manufacturer to make these bags. There are others and Staples also carries Pathfinder and Targus brands. NOTE: The bags will be available in Staples stores and online (Samsonite only) the week of November 16th.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

WEBSITE OF THE DAY: DontGoThere.org

DontGoThere.org
One of my travel gurus, Peter Greenberg, is just about to release a new book titled Don’t Go There: The Travel Detective’s Essential Guide to the Must-Miss Places of the World. In preparation for the launch, he has created a website where people can contribute to the list of places NOT to go. It’s pretty funny so if you have a tip or a gripe, check it out!

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

WEBSITE OF THE DAY: HollyEats.com

HollyEats.com
This is my kind of website! As someone who takes pictures of everything when I travel, especially my dining experience (everything from the restaurant and the menu to the wait staff and the food), I really appreciate HollyEats.com. This website is dedicated to tasty food and is for anyone who prefers chowing down to fine dining. And it’s for those of you who will go the extra mile, bypassing familiar, bland chain restaurants and driving further down the road to a barbecue pit, a truck stop, a diner, a drive-in or a greasy spoon, which might very well become the highlight of your journey. The founder covers eating on the New England Coast, Jersey Dogs, Carolina BBQs, State Fairs, Festivals, Caribbean, Mexico, Europe and more. WARNING: Exploring this site may make you hungry.

Monday, November 03, 2008

TRAVEL PRODUCT OF THE WEEK: LoJackForLaptops.com

LoJackForLaptops.com
You’ve probably heard of LoJack for your car, but did you know that you can get LoJack for your laptop, too? That’s right! This was music to my ears when I learned this because my laptop essentially contains my entire life and I would be royally screwed if someone ever stole it. Thanks to this new software, if someone ever stole my laptop, I would simply call the cops to file a police report, then log in to my Computrace LoJack account and submit a theft report. Then, I’d wait for their recovery team to spring into action. I have no idea how it really works but it sounds pretty good, doesn’t it?