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Greetings from South Florida! I have
been here for 9 days and loving it. When in Palm Beach, do what the
Palm Beachans do: Protest The Election! Here I am adding my two cents:
for Johnny Jet. I played a lot of golf, tennis and hung out at
the phattest (is this a word?) pad. I showed you a picture in last week's
issue, well if you want to rent this place you can! I just found out that
they rent it for the season: You get it for 3 months, and it's at
the bargain price of $150,000. Can you say OUCH? People pay it, so don't
laugh. Before we left Palm Beach and cruised down I-95 for 73 miles
to South Beach, I had to snap a shot ofmy
brother trying (not trying too hard) to look like this gargoyle.
We stayed at one of the "sheik" Loews
hotel chain. As I said once before "if you haven't stayed at one of their
properties your missing out". Here is what my
room looked liked. Here's a shot of the pool
(you know this is where I spent most of my time, and the topless beach
(sorry no pics :-()
South Beach seems to be changing a bit,
maybe it's just not the season (yet), but it didn't have the same feeling
of excitement it did four years ago. The public beaches were dirty, old
rusty beer cans all over the place (it would take the city about an hour
to clean the beach, and it would be so much better). Also, everything
is pretty expensive. Check out how much a bottle of evian cost out of the
bar (that hurts, huh?) Did you read the article in USA Today last
minibars track hotel snacking? You
know I went down the street, and replaced what I used for 1/8 of the cost.
We ate at some pretty good restaurant's.
Here we are
at a fine Cuban Restaurant celebratingmy
birthday (right on Lincoln Avenue called YUCA). This wasn't too
cheap either, but we played the credit card game (you know where everyone
throws their credit card into the bread basket, and has the waiter pull
out the unlucky big spender. Thank God it wasn't my card!)
After dinner we went to a cool outdoor club/bar
called naked beach, it was huge, on the beach, and no, no one was naked.
Another highlight (which I won some brownie
points from my girl) is that we walked next door to the other "hip" hotel;
The Delano. It's a real relaxing atmosphere, kind of like the skybar in
L.A. Everyone is around the bar, and pool, relaxing, chatting and drinking.
The pool is gorgeous, and it has a real shallow end (8 inches), and in
that end there is a
lone table with 2 chairs and 3 candles. I rolled up my pants, and
walked my girl out to it, and sat for about an hour (with everyone watching
us) and had a drink. Not bad, eh?
See you next week.
Travel Quote of the Week: He who would travel happily must travel light. -Antoine de Saint-Exupery,
author and aviator (1900-1945)
McGinnis A "hidden-city" fare is created when competing air carriers
are forced to meet fare pricing set by a competitor within a certain market.
In doing so, carriers will sometimes offer a lower fare to a destination
that connects through one of their higher-priced hub cities. To take advantage
of hidden-city fares, book your flight to the least expensive city (beyond
your final destination) and simply get off when the plane stops at the
higher-priced hub city. These work best when buying one-way fares. WARNING:
carry on all your baggage so that it isn't sent to the ticketed destination.
TO KNOW! Cabin Thieves Err rage isn't the only danger to fliers
I've written much about air rage. It is a real and current danger.
But besides a flying felon, there is another menace that may be on board
your flight too. This one is less dangerous but also less detectable.
It's the cabin thief.
Theft of belongings from coat closets, from under passenger seats, and
from overhead bins is not uncommon. While statistics are hard to come by,
I've heard enough anecdotes from those in the know to convince me that
on-board theft is not an insignificant problem.
Recently, for instance, I heard of a woman who made a living - a good
one at that - by stealing credit cards from the purses and wallets of passengers
aboard long-haul flights. She chose overnight, transoceanic flights because
(1) there is plenty of time to plan and carry out the thefts, (2) there
is a time in the flights when many of the passengers are sleeping and lighting
in the cabin is dim, and (3) victims are unlikely to discover the thefts
until the perpetrator is long gone.
The woman was finally nabbed as she deplaned in Japan after completing
a round-trip theft-a-thon where she collected several hundred credit cards
from coats, jackets, purses, and bags stored in the overhead compartments
of the jumbo jets she was prowling.
Certainly the potential consequences of cabin theft is no where near
as serious as an out-of-control passenger, but it is a major inconvenience
at best to have your credit cards pinched while you're snoozing at 30,000
To prevent becoming a victim of cabin theft, follow these few simple
rules when packing your personal effects and when stowing your luggage.
Put most important items on the bottom. Reduce the chances that a thief
can slide his hand into your luggage and easily find all the goodies he
is looking for right on top.
Check your luggage at the counter. This alternative appeals to fewer
people these days, but it absolutely eliminates the possibility of your
bags being rifled through during flight. (Having your luggage being pilfered
by baggage handlers on the ground is another story.)
Secure your carry-ons. Strap, buckle, tie, zip and do whatever else
you can do to make it difficult to get into your luggage.
Store carry-ons in front of you. Carry-on luggage stored under your
feet is more secure than in overhead bins. Nevertheless, when using an
overhead bin for your belongings, use one in front of you on the other
side of the aisle so you can see when others are groping your belongings.
Keep in contact with important documents. Keep really, really important
documents such as your passport in a travel wallet that fits under your
Keep all your luggage with you for the duration of your flight. If you
decide to get off the airplane to stretch you legs at an intermediate stop
on the way to your destination, take all your carry-on bags with you. If
you leave them on the plane, you may find yourself in a circumstance much
worse than having a couple of credit cards go missing. You may find that
an "importer" has placed contraband in your luggage to help him move his
goods risk-free (to him) through customs. And if the contraband is drugs
and you are flying into a death-penalty-for-possession country, you will
be more than inconvenienced.
The next time you fly, worry less about being ripped off "by" an airline.
Worry instead about being ripped off while "on" an airline.
Dr. Terry Riley is a psychologist and travel security authority. His
column appears on Wednesdays. He is author of the popular book Travel Can
Be Murder. Visit his site at http://www.appliedpsychology.com
or e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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