My Musings (Sundays)

Category Archives for My Musings (Sundays).

I just flew my 1199th Flight -This trip was with Thai Airways

  Thanks to a sublime Thai airways Business Class experience this week, my travel clock ticked over my 1199th flight! Next year, I will have been flying for fifty years and on average I have flown 24 flights or 55,000 km (33, 000 miles) a year. The reality is that it took me 31 years until I flew my 100th flight! My 200th was in 2004. My 500th just five years later in 2009 and my 1000th was in 2014!So now I can say I have spent over five months of my life inside planes travelling a distance equivalent to…

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My Easter Travel Plans: Countries #67 and #68 -How many countries have you visited?

This April I will be adding my 67th and 68th countries to my “portfolio”! First will be Laos. To get there, I will be taking a train ride into Laos from Thailand. When complete, I will have then travelled by rail all the way from Singapore to Kuala Lumpur to Bangkok to Vientiane . Well to be fair, almost to Vientiane as the rail line finishes 9km from the city currently! Then will come the 1200th flight of my life which will be with Lao Airlines, a new airline for me. AirlineRatings assures me they have a six-star…

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Tough Week this Week for all too many

One of the advantages of travel is that it can make you feel more connected to the planet. In times when others in the world are suffering, it can really impact you, however. This weekend has reminded me of the fragility of human life. My thoughts and prayers go to the victims of landslide in Mocoa, Colombia. It has also been a tough week in Australia has tens of thousands have been impacted by unbelievable flooding resulting from the landfall of Cyclone Debbie. And one cannot stop thinking of all those trapped in Mosul, suffering in…

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Weird anomalies of the Weird Laptop Ban

There are a few things that are confusing about the laptop ban. The first is why have the UK and USA chosen almost completely different set of countries: UK:  Egypt,  Jordan, Lebanon, Tunisia and Saudi Arabia and Turkey USA: Egypt,  Jordan, Kuwait,  Morocco, Qatar,  Saudi Arabia, Turkey, United Arab Emirates. Secondly are the routing anomalies. For example, if I fly Dubai in the UAE to New York JFK direct, I now cannot carry electronics on board. However if,  I fly from Dubai to London and then change on another flight from London to JFK, then I…

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Now riding 900+ miles on rail through Asia

Currently riding the rails from Kuala Lumpur to Bangkok about 1,500 km (930 or so miles) through Malaysia and Thailand. This is about the same distance from Boston to Atlanta or almost as far as Melbourne to Brisbane in Australia or Paris to Warsaw in Europe. A few years ago,  I travelled from Singapore to Kuala Lumpur by train. Sadly, the line into the heart of Singapore is no more. The Singaporean government closed it it 2011 after almost 80 years of operation. It has been one of my dreams to do the next stage from…

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The Trump Travel Bans – My Reaction

Update One: British dual nationals have now been exempted from the banning Update Two: People who have already been given permission to be in the USA may return there.  This is blog about travel and not politics and I try not to cross boundaries. The events of this week have so shocked me, I need to make comment. I have been to New York many times and stared at the words on the Statue of Liberty: “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming…

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Fixing Poor Passenger Behaviour

Following my post on Expedia’s annual survey of poor passenger behaviour, I have been considering how can airlines and authorities improve the situation? In 1993, Park,  Robertson and Wu found that service value, passenger satisfaction, and airline image each have a direct effect on passengers’ behaviour. Meeting (or exceeding) passenger expectations raise passenger satisfaction levels and results in better behaviour. So what would I do to fix things?: Create more pleasant airports- compare the stress levels of passengers at Singapore airport with JFK!  Rethink the check-in, security and boarding procedures which result in passengers doing…

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Is Flying getting worse or better? Reflections on four+ decades of airflights

  In 1977, flying from Sydney to Roma, I watched one movie per sector (on a large screen on an Alitalia 747). The film was loaded at each stop onto a centrally mounted projector which dropped from roof of each cabin. The flight to Roma had three stops of between two and three hours each so four movies were shown on the one flight! Each airport has very few facilities and were essentially concrete sheds. (Singapore’s Changi was being built). The headphones were a tube and the audio was out of sync with the visual.…

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Reflecting on 2016 and 2017 Travel Goals

What travel goals did you manage in 2016? I achieved almost all of my 2016 goals! I flew 119 times for business and pleasure last year with 20 airlines, rode 14 long distance trains plus a short cross-border train between Singapore and Malaysia, a few long distance buses and some hire car kilometres. My air flights were mostly concentrated in 14 countries in Asia, Australia/New Zealand and the Middle East with no European or US flights at all, as seen here: My goals for 2016 were to: Visit two new countries which I exceeded by going to Egypt,…

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