33
votes
6answers
25k views

Is it dangerous to drive through Death Valley?

I planned to drive through Death Valley with a rental car during end of May or beginning of June. Now a friend of mine told me that this is a little bit dangerous, and that a lot of rental companies ...
33
votes
3answers
13k views

Renting a Manual Car in the US

Neither specific websites of Hertz, Budget, Alamo, Enterprise, Thirftly or FOX allow you to specify that you want to rent a manual car. Neither do Kayak, Hotwire and Priceline. Is there a way to ...
33
votes
4answers
25k views

What do “Fragile” stickers on checked baggage do?

When traveling by air and checking bags, some airlines will let you declare an item as fragile and put stickers on the box or bag. How common is this policy? What do the fragile stickers do (i.e. how ...
33
votes
3answers
29k views

What does “SSSS” on my boarding pass mean?

When I checked in for my American Airlines flight from Costa Rica back to the States, I noticed that my boarding pass had "SSSS" printed across the top left corner. Nobody else in my party had this ...
33
votes
1answer
7k views

Why are some airplane seats numbered “DEK”?

I'm in an Avianca Airbus A320 and the seats are numbered ABC, DEK. Any particular reason why not "DEF"?
33
votes
6answers
1k views

When and where do I have the highest chance of seeing auroras?

I'm wondering what time of year is best, and what locations might be best, for catching the aurora. I'm currently thinking of February up at Sweden's ice hotel, but since the whole point of the trip ...
33
votes
2answers
11k views

Are there any cultures in which the “thumbs up” hand gesture is offensive?

In the USA it's common to give a thumbs up to say "Yes, this is good" or "Thanks" or convey another appropriate positive meaning. Are there cultures in which the "thumbs up" gesture a) would not be ...
32
votes
7answers
8k views

Why do some tourist attractions forbid tourists to take photographs?

In my travelling career, I have seen lots of no photography zones, but the reasoning behind it mostly made sense. It is related to national security (infrastructure, proximity of military bases) and ...
32
votes
5answers
7k views

What is the hotel room card slot inside the room for?

Several hotels I've stayed in lately (in the Middle East if that matters) have a card slot just inside the door of the room, and it appears that the lights/AC in the room only work if you have one of ...
32
votes
3answers
4k views

Pack of 10 tickets in Metro, Paris, can you share?

I am reading about Paris and I saw that you can buy a pack of 10 tickets. Are these only usable by one person, or they actually sell 10 separate tickets that you can share with others?
32
votes
7answers
8k views

Bringing coins back home from abroad; Is that unethical to do?

I have a bad habit of not properly utilizing foreign currency coins when I tour any country. When I pay in bills and get back coins I don't know why my brain is programmed to think of them as change ...
32
votes
3answers
10k views

How to vomit during a flight?

Last time I travelled I wasn't feeling quite well just before boarding the plane. I either had eaten something wrong or a flu just appeared. The thought of having to vomit during the flight made me ...
32
votes
10answers
32k views

Is there any reason not to do laundry with bar soap?

When traveling light, is there any reason not to use standard hotel-issue bar soap to wash clothes in a hotel sink? Carrying powder laundry detergent (or worse, liquid!) seems like a big hassle if ...
32
votes
3answers
4k views

Saving leftovers from restaurants in Paris

Doggy bags for saving leftovers in restaurants are extremely common in the USA, especially as portions sizes are usually too large to consume in one meal. But I have read in various forums that it ...
32
votes
5answers
5k views

Where can I try an autonomous driving car?

I heard that in the Netherlands there would soon be a self driving bus, and this would be the first sharing the road with other cars. There are also a couple of other places with autonomous cars, but ...
32
votes
4answers
6k views

Is sleeping on the floor in planes allowed, and if not, why not?

The scene last weekend: three cramped people trying to sleep in three bulkhead seats with those annoying immovable armrests and a whole lotta legroom in front. Why not curl up for a nap in all that ...
32
votes
5answers
930 views

Is there any way of evaluating the quality of a hotel's internet connection in advance?

I'm on the road a lot for work. I tend to end up staying at a lot of budget chain hotels that offer free wi-fi. So far so good. But sadly, not all wi-fi is created equal. The past few weeks I've been ...
32
votes
2answers
29k views

What does this sticker on the back of my passport mean?

I am currently travelling in the USA and when checking in on the boarding flight to enter the country, the security personnel attached a small yellow-white sticker to my passport (see a somewhat ...
31
votes
4answers
6k views

How up to date is the Man from seat 61?

The man from seat 61 is an amazing website. It's even hard to think someone compiled all that information with details that go well beyond the schedules. Which makes me wonder how it keeps updated. I ...
31
votes
6answers
7k views

Would I be allowed to get on a plane from the UK and fly to America with tea?

Today I was doing some research on food and drinks and realised that tea is not a very big thing in America and that all the "good" brands of tea are extremely overpriced or quite "un-attractive". So ...
31
votes
10answers
9k views

Can Canadian money (change) be used in the United States?

As a visitor to the US from Canada, is it possible to use Canadian money, especially coins, at businesses in the US? What about vending machines?
31
votes
4answers
11k views

What does this road sign mean? (Germany; red circle and X on a blue background, with a right-pointing arrow.)

I'm driving for the first time in Europe—in Munich, Germany—and I came across an intersection where there seemed to a "main" signal above, straight ahead, and a "side" signal to the right, near the ...
31
votes
6answers
5k views

Is there a specific reason for having a very short window for passengers to get to the boarding gate before closing it?

I am not a frequent traveler but it's been like this with all the flights I have been on. Here is the most recent example: Below is my boarding pass As you can see Gate Closes at 20:20 Here is ...
31
votes
7answers
5k views

Are there still any advantages to using an Oyster card for travel in London?

The advice to visitors to London always used to be to procure an Oyster card. Given that Transport for London now accept (in fact, have accepted for a while) Contactless credit/debit cards (and Apple ...
31
votes
5answers
10k views

What is the purpose of this cloth in hotel?

What is the purpose of the cloth across the bed? I see it at many hotels and it does not seem to serve any purpose other than make it look nice. Any idea what it can be used for? Ps. The purplish ...
31
votes
8answers
5k views

Communicating in Tokyo without Japanese

I'm going to Japan soon. (Like my previous question.) And I'm going to Tokyo. I'm not at all good at communicating in Japanese. A beginner, not even able to use it for basic purpose. How can I ...
31
votes
4answers
10k views

Can I be refused entry due to my place of birth?

Usually entry requirements are based on country of citizenship, but is it at all possible to be denied entry if you were born in a country in conflict with your travel destination ? This is a ...
31
votes
7answers
70k views

Someone else is booking international ticket for me using their credit or debit card. Do they need to be present physically at the time of check in?

If someone else is booking international ticket for me using his credit or debit card, does he need to be present physically at the time of check-in? Suppose I am coming back from Singapore to my ...
31
votes
3answers
5k views

What are the chances of success and the consequences of sneaking into business class?

I've read some people writing that they've seen people be caught sitting in First/Business class when they have economy class tickets. This was for international flights on big planes with several ...
31
votes
4answers
18k views

If a baby is born on an international flight over international waters, what nationality are they?

I seem to remember one of our members being on a flight when a baby was born, but can't find any reference to what happened to the baby in terms of citizenship. Generally you hear about pregnant ...
31
votes
3answers
4k views

How to know where a plane was during the past several days?

In the news there is this figure in which they show where EgyptAir plane was over the past 24 hours. Is it possible for ordinary people to do something similar for other flights before booking the ...
31
votes
6answers
30k views

Is leaving airport at a stop before the final destination illegal?

There are tricks such as "fuel dumping" or "hidden city ticketing" which involve booking a ticket composed of several connecting flights, then leaving the airport at a stop, possibly even "hopping ...
31
votes
3answers
3k views

OK we're all nerds here, so really, how on earth should I use a Japanese toilet?

OK so for anyone who's traveled to Japan you know what I'm talking about. They're devices that are a textbook example of excessive featuritis. But I want to use something other than the flush knob ...
31
votes
1answer
5k views

Are there any repercussions from having an Israeli stamp in my passport?

I have heard people say that having a stamp from Israel in your passport can cause problems when trying to get into other countries. Is there any truth to this statement? If so, which countries does ...
31
votes
2answers
7k views

Will getting a refund from an ESTA scam site cause me to be blacklisted from the US?

A colleague accidentally purchased a US ESTA from a scam site that I won't dignify with a link, charging him $31. (The official site charges just $14.) Like most scam sites, the site actually did ...
31
votes
2answers
7k views

Any way to find out what US Customs & Border Protection has in their database on me?

I travel from the US to Canada occasionally (about once per year on average) with my family. We are all US citizens and travel with US passports. Every time we re-enter the United States, I am given ...
30
votes
7answers
5k views

Celebrating the same new year several times over?

Is there a commercial service offered to general public that allows you to celebrate the new year several times? The idea is that you would celebrate it in a time-zone and than move to the next one ...
30
votes
7answers
7k views

Eating alone in London

I am in London this weekend alone. Is there any restaurants that cater specifically for the single eater or have sections for single diners? Although confident, I don't think I am THAT confident to ...
30
votes
9answers
7k views

From what point could you view the most US states?

A fairly simple question: from what single point could you see the most US states? It seems like it should be a popular tourist attraction.
30
votes
3answers
4k views

What street foods can I eat in Italy?

Sometimes I don't want to go eat at restaurants. So, What are the typical foods that are available on streets in Italy?
30
votes
5answers
8k views

Can you get sucked tight on a plane's toilet?

The sounds of flushing an airplane's toilet can be quite intimidating. When going to the toilet on a plane, I am always a bit cautious of accidental flushing. If so, do you risk being sucked stuck to ...
30
votes
13answers
2k views

Is there any way to spend a night in a European castle?

I spent a night in a jail converted to a hotel in Switzerland, and it made me wonder if there is a real castle converted to an hotel in Europe. And with "real" I mean the castle should have a ...
30
votes
4answers
7k views

Is it rude to talk on a mobile phone for the whole journey, when travelling alone in a London black taxi?

I had an uncanny feeling that it was rude of me to talk on a mobile phone for the whole journey, while travelling alone in a London black taxi. Is it the etiquette to have a conversation with the ...
30
votes
4answers
14k views

Travelling with two different passports [duplicate]

I was just wondering if you have two passports (a Chinese one and an Australian one), and you booked your airline ticket with the Chinese one, will you have to show both of your passports or just one? ...
30
votes
5answers
5k views

Why don't airlines offer last minute empty seats cheap? [closed]

There are lots of empty seats out there. Why aren't airlines selling them cheap on the day of the flight? I've seen a few anecdotal answers to this question. A lot of the answers come down to ...
30
votes
2answers
23k views

Which airlines ban the use of Knee Defenders during flight?

I read that some airlines such as United Airlines ban the use of Knee Defenders during flight. Is there any comprehensive list of airlines that ban the use of Knee Defenders during flight (or ...
30
votes
4answers
112k views

Can I use Google Maps traffic information to estimate driving time for a specific date/time?

In supported regions, Google Maps will tell me how long it will take to drive from A to B in current traffic conditions. It can also colour-code roads according to traffic conditions for a specific ...
30
votes
3answers
14k views

What are the signs of a bed bug infestation?

Bed bugs have become a real problem recently, with more and more places reporting outbreaks. What can you do to avoid being exposed to these nasty parasites? If you do get exposed, what can you do ...
30
votes
1answer
7k views

What is a Seaman's book, and can it really replace a passport?

What is a "Seaman's book", and can it really replace a passport for some or all immigration purposes? Even Wikipedia the all-knowing does not seem to know, although it contains many tantalizing ...
30
votes
2answers
881 views

Forgot baggage at Dubai. How to get it to Los Angeles?

Last week, I travelled via Dubai to Los Angeles. During the security checking at Dubai Airport, I was asked to remove my laptop from my bag and after that I forgot to to take it back. i realised that ...

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