Backpacker Travel Trends and Culture Blog

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International Pet Travel Requires Microchip

October 23rd, 2008 by Jordan

For those who have ignored all advice from friends and foes and still insist on traveling with pets internationally (despite the extra $100 airline fee, risk of injury or death in checked cabin, and overall struggle with finding pet friendly places to stay) you will need to get your dog or cat a microchip.  A microchip is a small device that is injected under your pets skin/fur that has a unique identification number.  Upon entry, they will match that chip number to your required vaccination cards.  If you lose your pet, the microchip is not a gps device, so it doesn’t help locate your pet in that manner.  If a pet shelter has the sense to look for a microchip (which can only be read by a certain scanning device) and posts that information where you can view it, that’s the only way it would help.  A microchip is required for the European Union and most other well traveled destinations.  And by the way the UK does not allow pets at all.

If you really need some companionship, in the form of a furry animal, a possibility is to purchase one while you are abroad.  I’ve been asked on more than one occasion if I want to buy a dog.  Part of me feels sorry for the dog because you know it’s not being treated well, but I’d feel even worse if I had to part ways with the dog in a few weeks.

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October 20th, 2008 by Jordan

For this week’s Pet Week, I’ve been scouring the Internet looking for quality content sites…and I have to admit…it’s kind of weak. Most sites look like they’ve been abandoned for years with old designs and the “new” articles dating back to 2004. Not good. But I did find a couple of good sites. One is They track airline industry pet information and even report on the number of pet losses, pet injuries, and pet deaths. Kind of morbid for a Monday morning, but their findings showed one very interesting figure. Apparently (and I do not pretend to know this is fact) Continental airlines is a horrible pet carrier. In 2007, says Continental Airlines lost 3 pets (good for 2nd place behind Delta who lost 5), 1 injury (which isn’t bad across the board), but had 12 deaths (more than double that of Alaska Airlines who came in 2nd worse with 6 pet deaths in 2007). I’m curious to know if those stats are accurate or if the site owner had a bad experience with Continental and is dishing out ultimate revenge….but I kind of believe their information to be true. Continental claimed the worst record in 2005 and 2006 as well.

Of all the sites I’ve browsed so far, this one seems to be the most up to date and had some of the best information. Tomorrow’s post won’t be so depressing….I hope.

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Air Wear Designs

October 4th, 2008 by Jordan

New travel messenger bags from  $39.99

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June 23rd, 2008 by Jordan

yotel locations in london

I just saw this tonight on ABC News. is the booking site for what I will call the smallest hotels ever.  But what they lack in size they make up for in location, as they are located in and around the airports of London Heathrow and London Gatwick.  They are quickly expanding and have plans to go into Amsterdam’s Schiphol next. They start at £25 for 4 hours, which is the minimum booking time.  I must say, I like the idea.  It’s clever and I see a lot of people taking advantage of these.  Whether or not they are profitable is another thing.  I would think airport space has a premium price.  Although for backpackers like me…it’s still a luxury…I’ve gotten use to using my pack as a pillow and finding an uncrowded span of three airport chairs.

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Farecast by MSN

May 21st, 2008 by Jordan

farecast logo

I first heard this new site when they won a Webby Award (Personally I think some corporate politics where involved in that). Here’s what you need to know about Farecast. It’s an airline booking engine developed by Microsoft (that’s the first thing you notice…it also means it’s not eye candy either).

The good: Farecast is probably the first massive airline booking site where the links take you directly to the Airline’s own site (Delta, AA, Southwest etc.). Which is great because anytime you purchase through expedia, orbits, cheaptickets, etc. they will charge you a small additional fee.

Farecast also has a predictive pricing application (currently for about 30 major cities) that allows you to see if the prices are going up or down. For the few test runs I did, they all had the same “Tip: Buy” Prediction.

airline predict

also like how they handled the “6 tickets left at this price.”

farecast flight search
The bad: When I was typing in the cities, it jumped to the search results without first letting me put in my travel dates. Like it was so excited to show off the new search features it skipped important information. I did manage to get it to work eventually.

The confusing: There are plenty of advertisements from Travelocity, Cheapflights, Expedia and more booking engines on Farecast. So I don’t understand? Is Farecast trying to put their sponsors out of business? Because that’s what this booking engine will do. Somebody explain that to me.

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Google Flight Tracking

December 19th, 2007 by Jordan

Google Flight Tracking

Google is just plain dominating the Internet. And as of 2007/2008, we are all loving it. I hope they don’t do something stupid with all that power. According to Google’s blog, Google is now the place to go to see if a flight is ontime, delayed or cancelled. With help from, all you need to do is type in the Airline and the Flight Number. It will quickly pull up a result and you can see the status without ever going into the site. More information is provided if you do click the link. Not too shabby. Thanks again Google.

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Categories: Tools, Trends | 3 Comments »

Fly Right Jet Lag Cure

December 15th, 2007 by Jordan

Fly Right Jet Lag Cure

Supposedly, this 100% organic formula helps jet travel. Each organic liquid herb has a purpose to prevent a specific symptom of air travel. Fatigue, stress and anxiety, lack of mental clarity, poor circulation etc. each has an ingredient added to combat the feeling. I wouldn’t mind trying a bottle myself before it gets to be the pop hollywood thing to do. You can check it out and purchase through their site at

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