2022 was a great year for travel, with a few exceptions. In this episode I talk about travel to Florida, Las Vegas, Indianapolis, and San Diego.
How was the Cape Coral and Fort Myers area before Hurricane Ian? How is it looking now that the clean up is in progress? I'll look at some market statistics and share some ideas on when and where to go in the Fort Myers area.
In 2022 I had two work trips. The first was to Indianapolis and the second to San Diego. San Diego was a pleasant surprise across the board. Was the Indianapolis airport all the awards make it out to be? Listen and find out what I think.
Las Vegas was a wonderful trip. In our last episode, we previewed the trip. Now we take a look at what we liked and what could be better about Las Vegas. There's a lot going on and I think you'll enjoy your time there.
For 2023, I take a look at Curacao, CES 23 and how Delta "stole the show" with their new enhancements, and much more.
References from this show:
Alaska Air - https://alaskaair.com
CanITravel.net - https://canitravel.net
CES23 - https://www.ces.tech/
Curacao Chronicle - https://curacaochronicle.com
Delta Airlines Future of Connection - https://news.delta.com/ces2023/future-of-connection
Want to save on travel, business, and more? Check out Founders Card today
This card does have what appears to be a high cost of entry, but the benefits that you get (some of which are very valuable in Las Vegas) are worth taking a look. Use my link for a special rate https://founderscard.com/membership?code=FCCAMERON039 or click here
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Please note that the following transcript may contain errors:
[00:00:00] : yes, travel, there's so much more to life than just staying in the same place all the time travel is an investment in yourself. We couldn't agree more. Welcome to the know where you want to go travel podcast. You'll get recaps of recent travel advice on where to go and why to go there in the future. We'll talk about the news that's impacting travel and we'll cover some places that you may never have even thought about going. We've been planning personal and corporate travel for over 15 years and it's our passion to help you discover new places, buckle your seatbelts. order up your favorite food or drink and let's do this. This is the know where you wanna go, travel podcast and now your host Andy Yang, Hello and welcome to season three of the know where you want to go travel podcast. My name is candy young, I'm your host. I'm excited to be here in 2023 as we continue our efforts to bring you solid good information on travel as you can tell. We have a new intro, we'll have a new outro. We have some new artwork for the podcast as we look to continue to expand and grow in the new year. So Again, hopefully everybody had a great holiday season. We'll get right into things with a recap of 2022 and I'll talk a little bit about where I've been and where we went last year and any thoughts we had on that and of course, uh the intention is to help you with maybe some interesting and, and, and things that you wouldn't have thought about otherwise. So we'll kick it right off with florida. So our first trip and this was last year was kind of a light travel time for us when it came to leisure travel. There's a little bit more business travel that we'll talk about today. But our first trip was to Fort Myers florida and uh we had a wonderful time there. We went to Cape Coral where we bought land last year. So It's interesting you'll you'll see of course they had that horrendous hurricane later in the year. And quite frankly, the values of properties have not really gone down in some cases they've gone up since then, which is interesting. I think there was a lot of gloom and doomers saying that property values were gonna plummet by 50% in a few months after the hurricane. And and they're definitely not plummeting by any means. They're going down across the country. But this isn't a real estate podcast. I won't get too far into that. But talking about Fort Myers, Cape Coral, Naples Estero uh punta gorda, etcetera. Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful. And we went in june and we're gonna go again this year in May in the off season. We were on the outer band of the off season and it was just so relaxing and nice and not full of tourists and not full of uh snowbirds. And I mean that with all due respect snowbirds had gone back to their humble abodes in the north at that point, so it was very quiet and and in Cape Coral, which is one of the fastest growing areas in the country, there's still some opportunity for infrastructure improvements before I'm a I'm a huge uh anti fan of four way stop sign site because nobody knows how to use them. And quite frankly, sometimes I don't know what I'm doing other than waiting for everybody else to go until I even dare go. But that said, you know, they're gonna they just infrastructure with lights and so on. And I think a lot of that will come after the hurricane. Unfortunately took so much infrastructure out. But in at least in june of last year there was some interesting things there when it came to infrastructure and a little bit of traffic on on areas where the infrastructure wasn't quite there. You're gonna find a lot to do even in the off season. There's one thing we didn't get a chance to do. I think it's very interesting if you're over near the western. The little uh marina at the western, it's a beautiful area. There's some great seafood restaurants, pincher seafood was really really good. Some good uh little bakery in their great boardwalk. The restaurant bar at the western is amazing as well. And you can easy parking in the parking deck that's outside there. I mean there was no problem finding parking. We stayed at the Westin. But even if we weren't staying there, you would see that the parking was just abundant and I don't expect that's going to change in the off season this year. And there was a ferry that we could have had pick us up outside the west end at the marina to take you to Well Fort Myers Beach, I don't recommend that. I think I know people are going back to Fort Myers Beach this year. I just don't recommend it. They really need to have the area cleared out so they can rebuild that. There's other areas siesta um down at marco Island Naples beaches down there, go there. Uh Stay away from Sanibel and and from Fort Myers Beach in my opinion because it's just we just get in the way and it's just not cool. And plus the waters may not be safe there's still some some uh interesting materials that are in the water that may be causing some problems. That's still up to. That's not really up for debate I guess it's true but it's just not worth it. So look around a little bit. Um outside of that there's so many different restaurants, there's some great fun outdoor activities there. We did a Tiger Woods mini golf excursion. That was really really fun. That was in Fort Myers. The airport's totally fine. I am a big judge er of our big judge of airports and the Fort Myers Airport was fine, I wish they had a Delta Sky club but that's a first world problem for sure. They don't have any clubs from what I could ascertain. And then of course the restaurants so many different things. You can see the influence of people from other parts of the country. Especially New England. They have several new England style seafood restaurants which made us happy. We went to the Lobster Lady which was really cool and we're gonna go to another couple others when we go back and of course you know just that weather is amazing. It's that tropical subtropical weather that's pretty unique even in florida. So certainly something to check out there. Um Outside of that. I had to work troops in 2022. That gave me an impression that I can share. First was to Indianapolis and the Indianapolis airport for some reason wins the best airport award in the country um from some publications nearly every year. It's not bad. Um I just wasn't seeing it. You know I went into the Sky Club there and turned around, walked back out because it was too busy. That's not a judgment of the airport because there's no they have no control over over airlines in their in their clubs. However I didn't see much excitement about it. Our work conference that we had there for a couple of days was on the outer edges of the city of Indianapolis. So we uh we're in Plainville and Plainview, wow I had to go back to my nose. So it was interesting. Uh nice little building up shopping center. It isn't a growing area, it's just not something that I would be excited to return to on the counter offense there. We did have our annual conference for work at in san Diego and I thought oh no California, I never want to go to California, I'm happy in texas, but san Diego was absolutely gorgeous. Mission Bay, Mission Beach, absolutely amazing. Amazing food from the mexican influence to the sushi too, just everything in between the seafood was so amazing that people were super nice everywhere um everywhere we went that Uber drivers were super friendly, the people at the restaurants were super friendly at the every place we went and it was just so beautiful. The weather around there year round is amazing. So if you look at going to san Diego for a couple of days or a week or whatever, you know, there's still an offseason per se, but you really can't go wrong with the weather. So if you catch a good flight And I know from Austin, Alaska air often has $59 1 way fare and that's really, really cool and so check that out for sure and just sign up for Alaska errors, uh mileage, um, club and savings club, I should say and I think you'll find that there's a lot of good to be seen there. So definitely check that out as a destination. And then of course we talked about in the past podcast about going back to las Vegas and we did do that and had a fabulous time. I would say that las Vegas um you know, certainly has changed a couple of notable changes with las Vegas, circa circa hotel downtown was absolutely beautiful. We went to the sports book there and just sat and watched some sporting events on the humongous screens. It was so much fun, we had a blast doing that. And of course the fremont Street experience with the new four K dome is amazing. We visited the El Cortez for the first time. It's a cute little old hotel casino, definitely something worth checking out. It's a hop skip and a jump off of Fremont Street. So you're still in the safe zone there. So don't worry about that. The strip continues to develop, You have a ton of things going on there. So you know, it's uh, I would say that one thing I noticed on the negative outside of all the positives. Well two things one, the prices prices are just going up, there's not many freebies anymore. You can gamble your, your life away and still struggle to get a freebie when it comes to buy drinks and so on, which we didn't worry too much about because we didn't gamble much, but a lot of homeless, a lot more than I've ever seen there and you know, you'll see a lot of times panhandlers of course and then of course the costume people that are doing performances for, for tips, but I saw a lot of people throughout the days and nights that were just passed out sleeping and that's not something you typically saw as much in the past. There a couple of other notable expansions in Las Vegas, the the Valley's resort was starting to undergo its transformation to the horseshoe, which is interesting the, the resort world, resorts world, which is close to, we went down to circus circus because my dad, my dad when he went to Vegas way way back in the seventies love circus circus, so I always go there and take a picture for him. Uh we stopped at resorts world on the way and that's looking absolutely fabulous as well. I definitely recommend checking that out. The T mobile arena has been around for a bit now but that was looking good, the football stadium was looking great, there's a lot of new things and if you look over near flamingo and the link the links a renovation off of of a former of a former hotel and it's, it's pretty nice but the outside the little area between the flamingo and the link is really well done with some great shops, some some eateries and bars et cetera that you should definitely check out a lot of construction at caesar's spouse, they're doing a lot of work there, but otherwise a lot of great things and you know, we definitely were excited for the first time going to las Vegas to be able to go over to secret pizza at the cosmopolitan. Super, super good, super good experience, fun, fun to do. I'd highly recommend that. So that's, it was a great trip. We had a good time, We had a great rate on the hotel room, we had great support at the hotel, we stayed at Planet Hollywood and at Planet Hollywood at numerical mile shops. There's so much to do when it comes to eating and shows and everything. I sound like I'm eating so much, I ate so much, but I really didn't every morning we were able to get breakfast for, for two for under $15 which is really good. There's 33, maybe four different places within the miracle mile shops that you can do that and it was just just filling enough to get the day going. So definitely check that out. So as we look at um 2023 again this show is definitely gonna hit on, it already has and it's hitting on a lot of different aspects of travel. I certainly still recommend before you commit to any travel, especially foreign travel that you go to, can I travel dot net, which I'll note in the notes and go there to make sure that there are no new travel updates when it comes to Covid or anything else. Covid, it just continues to morph and continues to change and and unfortunately it's just been um some weird stuff going on as we look at the latest updates as of january 7th japan updated a couple of years ago that you know they're they're vaccinated are allowed. So they're asking you know for for that to be the case. That's that's the latest update there. So you have um Morocco has reopened the borders Ghana requiring a visa to enter Ghana. This is just again this website is amazing. So if I wanted to go to from from the United States let's say I want to go to um Mongolia you know uh and I'm vaccinated single vaccinated and yeah so you you know must re conditions entry has been lifted, negative tests before are no longer required. So a lot of open things at the moment just always check out can I travel dot net amazing website. We love them before you plan any travel and before you go and always buy trip insurance because anything can happen at any time. And um there's amazing offers there and I can help you with trip insurance. I don't typically sell my services on my podcast but if you reach out to me I can help you with trip insurance and get you really uh very high high end and and moderate cost package that will more than pay for itself in the unfortunate event that something happens couple other travel notes to wrap this show up is uh first carousel. Uh that's our favorite place ever. So we haven't been in way too long. We're not gonna go this year, but it's not in our plans for this year, our plans this year or to go back to Fort Myers, Cape Coral's area and also go up to new Hampshire later this year and I'll be back in las Vegas for work as well this year. So we'll have some reports on that um in curacao, it's it's pretty stable right now. There's an interesting, there's a huge oil refinery in carousel and there was a rumor of that shutting down and the Prime Minister of curacao was working on that, that's typically things that tourists don't see because they mask it from them. But you don't notice it because what happens is you go to a country like curacao or anywhere and you might notice something is amiss if you've been there several times, but you really have no clue what it is. I know when we went like a day or two after the Prime Minister was shot dead on the beach across the street from where we were, we would not have known unless there was, unless I had looked at the curacao Chronicle before I went there, we would have known the same thing with this, you won't really know. But it's good to know the stability or instabilities of what's going on uh in your travel destinations. Again that goes to the point of you don't want to have a shock coming up. Uh you know when you go to travel to these places so definitely keep an eye on that. And again I recommend checking out the curacao Chronicle dot com. Uh It's not be curious, I'll chronicle, it's just curious out Chronicle dot com. Uh And I'll put that in the notes as well to check out, just keep an eye on the news. Their their political environment seems to be stable right now that instability was about uh 10 9 or 10 years ago. They had the instability with the prime minister being shot and killed unfortunately. Which was really sad. But certainly check check that out exciting news for today other than the new brand. And the new intro outro is the fact that Delta has really unleashed a bunch of cool things. I before I when I was putting my notes down of what I wanted to talk about today, I intentionally did not write down Southwest because I don't want to I love southwest and I think that they've learned a major lesson uh and they're going to fix it and that's all I'll say about that. But Delta has really uh the C. E. S. Conference in Las Vegas took the uh the show by storm with a lot of new updates. There one is free wifi for everybody and it's gonna be high speed wifi and what they've said, they've been testing that for a bit. If your Sky Miles member, there's really no reason not to be just sign up for sky miles and it's free. And of course there's privacy policies you want to look at and they're gonna track some things in order to give you the best, in their opinion, the best experience. So definitely check that out on the delta dot com website, but they're going to have some really cool things there with their new, they're new, they were one of the first airlines, in fact probably only, um, airline to have the, to buy into the seat back screens, sorry, couldn't talk for a second. The seat back screens with entertainment on them. And they're going to evolve that, which is really, really cool. So first, of course wifi, by the end of february, they expect to have 80% of the flights covered by wifi, which is amazing. And then they're going to from there, they're going to have some really cool things on the screen on the back of your seat, the entertainment hub. So it's going to be very, very exciting to have that where you're gonna be able to not only have the free wifi, but delta sync and it's going to, you're going to have, you have to sign up with, of course the Sky Miles, Delta, Sky Miles and then you on demand, you can order in flight dining, discover content is curated for you. So based on your interest that you set our interest that they're tracking that your back screen will look different than anybody else's because it'll be curated to you and that's all from the back of the screen and from what I understand that's gonna cover everything from economy to first class, maybe first class will probably still have a personalized service there where you're not ordering in the back of the seat because I think that that human aspect is still important but you'll be able to really do some cool things are also in Detroit in Atlanta right now doing face facial matching at check in and for checking your are for uh yeah, checking your bags. So that's interesting as well. I'm a privacy buff so I do get uneasy about some of this stuff but I do think it's really cool what they're trying to do and we're gonna hopefully phi Delta to Fort Myers in May and at least the wifi should be happening, be super cool with this at the back screen or the seat back screens were working as well because wow, that would be cool. And we're gonna be flying through Atlanta most definitely, most definitely if not it'll be through Detroit won two of the big hubs. So we'll see what happens there. So, very exciting things there. So si es 23 or C. E. S every year is always super cool to see what comes out of it and it's super super amazing when it's related to travel. So yeah, so that's what's going on. 2022 a good year for travel restrictions coming off quite quite a bit. We get bumps in the road every now and then of restrictions coming back. So yeah, we definitely want to keep an eye on that always. But I appreciate everybody listening. I know we had I've had you know, dozens of folks that have clicked through and and reached out over the past two years and And I've always said and I always put my foot in my mouth saying I'm gonna continue to improve and get better and do more and get guests and so on. But we are, we're going to do great things. It's not a new year's resolution. I don't believe in those, I believe in just improving a 101% every day of my life and hopefully I can improve your travel experience 1% at least today And definitely comment. Leave any comments you have and and I look forward to returning soon and we'll we'll get more in depth in somebody's very, very broad topics that I covered today. So thank you so much and have a wonderful January and hopefully your 2023 continues to be amazing. Thank you so much. You've been listening to the know where you want to go. Travel podcast, cam has been planning personal and corporate travel for over 15 years. It's what he loves to do. And with this show we can give you recaps of our recent travel and advice on where to go and why to go there in the future. We'll give you news on things that impact travel like Covid and we'll throw in some places you may never have even thought about going. We hope you enjoyed the show. Make sure to like rate and review and we'll be back soon. But in the meantime, hit up cam jOHN travel dot com and find us on instagram, twitter and facebook at caM jOHN travel. See you next time on the know where you want to go travel podcast.