Travel Gadget Reviews

An IT professional by day, this HappyFlyer is a self-proclaimed tech enthusiast with a passion for travel. Hailing from the East Coast, she will be writing about her interest in travel gadgets and sharing her best travel tips and unique perspective on travel experiences.

Beware: Taking Photos with Costumed Characters in Times Square

I was in New York City, Times Square this past weekend for a Broadway show.  Times Square is an entertainment mecca, drawing in millions of visitors every year.  Many of those people are visiting the city for the very first time. There is something I’ve seen enough times that I think it’s worth calling it out. Costumed Characters In Times Square, there are these costumed characters that would beckon you to take photos with them. This weekend, I’ve seen Disney’s Olaf from Frozen, Lady Liberty, and a slew of Marvel superheroes. I am no stranger to paying for photos...

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6 Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Think of Miles and Points as “Free” Travel

Have you ever mentioned some travel plans to your family or friends, and they automatically assume you are traveling for free because you are paying with miles and points?   Or, have you ever noticed slight changes in service or attitude when a staff learned that you are paying with miles or points?   If so, you encountered what I deemed to be a perception problem with miles and points. A fellow blogger recently wrote about his experience checking out of a hotel where the staff did not seem to view the rewards program in a positive light.  In some ways,...

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Why Being Nice at Work Can Backfire Badly, According to a Study

Disclaimer: This is a non-travel related post. An article recently came out that suggests that being super nice at work can backfire badly, according to psychology.  I have conversations recently with some folks on a host of workplace topics, ranging from effective management styles to workplace conflicts. This article triggered some split opinions.  The article is making the assertion from a study that if you are super nice and productive at work, it can actually work against you because you may “make those around you look bad in comparison”. The highlight: Things are different at work when a real-life...

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T-Mobile’s Free Data Roaming to an Expanded List of Countries Starts Today

I often write about my experiences with T-Mobile, both the good and the bad.  T-Mobile and Sprint are my favorite wireless carriers due to the strength of their free international roaming offering, even if it’s capped at 2G speed.  Earlier in the week, T-Mobile came out with some changes to its international offering.   Here’s my take on each of them: 1. Free Data Roaming Now Covers Over 210+ Countries/Destinations: Technically, they’ve added 70 more countries to the original list of 140+.  You can see the full list of countries here.  The coverage for the expanded countries starts 7/22/2018....

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The Problem with Delta’s Mileage Upgrade Award Option

Delta’s Upgrade Options with Miles For the most part, I like Delta.  Recently, I looked into Delta’s upgrade options for an upcoming trip.  Delta offers two ways to upgrade on a paid fare with miles. 1. Upgrade with Miles (Option available before you book a flight):   The miles required for the upgrade is the price difference between coach and the upgraded cabin, calculated at a 1 cent per mile rate.  Here’s a real example:  If the price difference for a short flight is $60, then you’ll need 6k in Delta Skymiles to upgrade.  If the fare difference is...

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Why You Might Prefer to Sit on the Right Side of the Plane

I always like to pick my seats for my flights.  I have a tendency to pick a seat on the RIGHT side of the plane, even if it may not always make sense. However, sometimes there may be reasons why sitting on the left side of the plane may have its advantages. For example: 1. Potentially Better View You might be able to see some famous landmarks as the plane heads towards its destination.  The side you choose sometimes matters as one side might offer a slightly better view.  I still remembered flying into Geneva and seeing water jetting...

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Stunning Demo of Assistant: Is Google Duplex the Next Disruptive Technology?

For a long time, Apple held the title for its innovations.  However, nothing in particular really stood out to me from this year’s 2018 WWDC Keynote event.  Interestingly, I recently came across a demo of Google’s AI Assistant called, Google Duplex.  The technology is smart enough to handle simple tasks, like booking an appointment.  I was definitely impressed by the demo. Take a listen: I’m not at all surprised by progress with the technology, given the success of voice assistant  like ‘Siri’ or ‘Hey Google’.  Rather, I am surprised by how the technology is smart enough to pick up the...

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When You Procrastinate: 2 Questions to Ask Yourself to Get Things Done

Sometimes, when I hear people say, “I’ve always wanted to visit X country”, I’d pondered what is stopping them.  Granted, we all lead very busy lives. There are also constraints, whether it’s with time, money, health, or other reasons.  To a large extent, we’re all guilty of putting things off at one point or another.  I am no exception.  Still, I don’t put too much stock in blanket statements. If something is truly important, people will find a way to make it happen. I tend to check myself by asking these two questions: 1. “If Not Now, When?” Start...

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12 Expenses Successful People Don’t Waste Time or Money On: How Successful Are you?

There is a trending article titled, “12 Expenses Successful People Don’t Waste Time or Money On” originally published on entrepreneur. I suspect most of the regular readers are savers since we are always looking for the best travel deals or opportunities.  I generally considered myself to be financially disciplined, so I thought it might be fun to provide a commentary on the 12 expenses listed in the article. 1. Lottery tickets Well, I guess I failed at the first one already.  I know the lottery is a fool’s game, and I know you actually have better odds getting struck...

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Best Travel Quotes: 50 Inspirational Travel Quotes to Stir Your Wanderlust

I love inspirational quotes.  Not surprisingly, one of more memorable gifts I’ve ever received is a daily calendar from my college roommate, each page containing a daily inspirational quote.  I think of it as chicken soup for the heart. I still fondly remember one of my favorite quotes, “Beyond the clouds.  Behind the rain.  There are a thousand rainbows”.  With travel summer season around the corner, I decided to compile 50 of my favorite travel related quotes (and 3 general quotes).  I hope they inspire and stir your wanderlust. 1. “You don’t have to be rich to travel well.”...

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