Thursday, May 7, 2015

Travel opinions as of May 2015

I travel but probably not as much as others. Just sharing some thoughts on travel vendor rankings.

Airlines internationally:
ANA (international)
Air Asia (yikes! But intra Asia)
I've only flown ANA on one round trip but I loved the seats, TVs and friendly staff. Food was survivable. I understand Korean air is good for Asia as well! I flew air Asia way before the accident. It offered great prices intra Asia.

Airlines domestically:
South West
US airways/American

JetBlue is the best due to their bigger seats, TVs and friendliest flight crew. I have mosaic status on JetBlue and due to it's lesser popularity? Mosaic status means something and you do board early. On US airways the seats are old and cramped. If you fly at a business flight time (early morning or after work), more than 60% of the plane has platinum, gold, silver, bronze, purple, green,  or super duper status.  By the time zone 1 boards the gate area is very empty. Also, some airlines just feel so transactional "hurry up and get off my plane."

Hotels domestically:

I'm biased, the SPG amex card  has been a popular recommended card. Redeeming SPG points is very easy and the value is incredible. Hilton may be more wide spread but their point system is diluted, there are black out dates, but when you get access to the diamond lounge it's a great feature.


Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Uber / taxi driver hustle

I ride Uber every day of the work week, to and from work or dinner. Occasionally I'll ride taxi's when surge is too high or is readily available.

One theme is for sure, taxi drivers hate Uber.

Why? Because the market speaks loudly that this generation of consumers wants convenience, mobility and on-demand service. The old ways of hailing or calling for a cab is no longer an accepted in our fast paced society.

You can argue that Uber has entered markets with out any permission and it's true. They fight litigation and lobby for an Uber presence world wide with much resistance. I can't say uber will be the market leader forever but their war chest is enormous.

What's the end game? Google is a big investor and are developing driverless cars. Will we see those on the roads responding to our uber requests in ten years? Time will tell.

For now we're silently voting with our pockets, I'm in for these services like Uber, Lyft and lesser known Side car.