Sunday Picture Post – Washington DC

Last week I was in Washington DC for work (my actual job, not anything blog-related).  Well, not Washington DC, we were actually staying and working in Chevy Chase, Maryland, but my client’s office was on the street that functions as the border between Washington DC and Maryland, so close enough I guess.  It was a busy week and we didn’t really do much aside from going to the office, going to dinner, and back to the hotel.

I just purchased a new camera (a Sony a7) and really wanted to get some shots with it to get ready for my big trip coming up later this month.  I hadn’t really had a chance to shoot anything because we had been so busy, and I wasn’t sleeping very well anyway, so at about 4:30am on Friday morning I took an UberX to the National Mall to try and get some Blue Hour shots.  I really liked how some of them turned out!

national-air-space-museum-1

I’m very much a new photographer, especially with all of the post-processing capabilities of things like Lightroom and Photoshop, but some of these pictures from the Capitol turned out much better than I expected.  Anyway, just thought I’d share them with you, enjoy!   Continue reading

Categories: Travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

The Park Hyatt Dubai

Ok, full confession: this trip report has taken probably a month longer than it should have.  It’s almost done though.  Let’s get everyone caught up:

Planning
DFW-Venice on US Airways
Venice
Paris: A Stroll
Park Hyatt Paris Vendome
Going to the French Open
Where to go in Dubai if it’s too hot outside
Afternoon Tea at the Burj Al Arab: A Guide for Posers

Everyone caught up?  Good.  Let’s continue with a fantastic hotel: the Park Hyatt Dubai.

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Categories: Hotel Reviews, Travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Etihad Amenity Kit Giveaway Winner!

Well, I plugged in the number of comments on the giveaway post, random.org spat out a truly random number.  This is that number:

Yep, number 1

So sometimes it does pay to be first on the internet!  Here was the first comment left on my post.

Winner!

So congratulations Jamie and check your email soon so we can get it in the mail to you.

For everyone else, stay tuned!  Andy’s Travel Blog is very close to 100,000 all-time views, which means there’s a bigger and better giveaway in store!  Until then, have a great weekend!

 

Best,
Andy

Categories: Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Bluebird Discount on gas at Walmart

This just came across my News Desk (by “news desk” he means he got an email -ed.).  It probably came by much earlier, but I never read it until recently.  This may be old news to most of you, but it was news to me.

If you have a Bluebird card from Walmart, you can save 15c/gallon at Walmart or MurphyUSA gas stations through 9/8/14.  This will be good for those of you who make frequent visits to Walmart for whatever reason.

Details are here.

QUICK REMINDER:  Entries for my Etihad Amenity Kit giveaway end at 7pm CDT tonight!  Make sure to leave a comment on this post to enter!

 

Have a great weekend everyone, safe travels!

Best,
Andy

 

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How to override your hotel air conditioning sensor

In addition to terribly insufficient closet space, another thing I dislike about some business hotels are the thermostat sensors that control the air conditioning.

So I did some research, and it turns out overriding a specific model thermostat is much easier than you’d think…

Also, a reminder that I’m giving away an Etihad First Class amenity kit!  Details here.

 

Best,
Andy

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GIVEAWAY: Etihad First Class Amenity Kit

[UPDATE: THIS CONTEST HAS CLOSED AND THE WINNER ANNOUNCED, THANKS FOR PARTICIPATING! -ANDY]

Well guess what? I’ve never given anything away, and now is a good time to start.

I’m on the road this week, which means my posting schedule has been a little slowed by Actual Work, but I’ve decided to give something away in the meantime. I’m happy to announce that Andy’s Travel Blog is close to celebrating it’s 100,000th view, so we’ll have another giveaway very soon.

I flew Etihad First Class in June and had a wonderful flight, for which I’ll be posting the trip report early next week.  Many of you followed my live Instagram broadcast of the flight, which got rave reviews (by “rave” we’re talking like 3-4 likes).  I got a nice amenity kit during the flight, and I’d like to give it to one of my readers!

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My ugly mug in the mirrored door of the suite.

So here’s how it will work: leave a comment on this post telling me your favorite Andy’s Travel Blog post you’ve read recently, and why. On Friday, August 15 at 7:00pm CDT I’ll choose a winner using Random.org and send them the amenity kit I received from my flight. I’ll use random.org to choose the comment number.

There are untold amounts of terms and conditions that apply, but basically be good and be legit. One entry per person, no purchase necessary, readers in US and Canada eligible to win.

I historically do not receive a lot of comments on the blog, so you all have a pretty solid chance of winning!

Categories: Travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 31 Comments

Dear Business Hotels

Make sure your hotels are functional above all else. See below for a video about what I mean.

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Categories: Travel | Tags: | 4 Comments

How American Just Made Their App Better!

American has always had a pretty solid mobile app, in my opinion.  They’ve gradually made updates, first with mobile boarding passes, then the standby/upgrade list (and your place on it), then seat maps, etc.

Well friends, I was checking in on a business trip on which I’m departing tomorrow and noticed something REALLY AWESOME at the bottom of my screen.

INCOMING FLIGHT INFO!

(I did my best to remove my personal info from this boarding pass, find out why)

This functionality is something I’ve looked forward to for a long time.  This information helps you be the first to know when there is a possible delay and helps you be the first to call and rebook if you’re going to miss a connection, etc.

You usually had to go to an Admiral’s Club to get that kind of information before (as Gary mentions here), and now you’ll have it at your fingertips when you check in for your flight!

All that said, though, unintentionally it looks like American has allowed me to spend even more time in the Centurion Lounge at DFW instead of needing to go to the Admiral’s Club!

 

Best,
Andy

Categories: Travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Travel Blogger Bingo

The travel/points blogger world is a fun one.  Lots of great writers (especially those on the boardingarea.com and prior2boarding.com networks, I’m biased though) write about amazing and incredible experiences.

(Giddy for Points, part of another fine blogging network, First2Board, put together a fantastic listing of the bloggers that are part of the various networks for reference)

Simply because we all tend to fly similar routes and have similar aspirational properties and experiences we seek, there’s a lot of overlap in this world.  So I thought we should play a little game: Travel Blogger Bingo.

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Categories: Travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments

How I Had Afternoon Tea at the Burj Al Arab: A Guide for Posers

As part of Dubai’s reimagining/reconcepting/resomethinging in the mid-1990’s away from an oil sheikdom to a tourism and financial center (and by “tourism and financial center” I mean “place for malls“), they decided to build a centerpiece of a hotel that would serve as a beacon to the world, saying proudly and loudly “All your tourism are belong to us.”

Ok, actually I was going to make a joke about that song “SAIL”.  You know, the one where the guy goes “……SAIL” over and over again.  But I didn’t think some of you would get it.

Anyway, here’s the Burj Al Arab.

Andy, get out of the way!

Andy, get out of the way!

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Categories: Travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

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