Chris Fagan
Chris Fagan

Want to know how to travel in style, just like the pros? We check in with frequent fliers to find out how often they fly, their favorite destinations and what they never leave home without.

Name: Chris Fagan

Occupation: Author, Speaker, Adventurer, Innovation and Creative Thinking Consultant

Hometown: Champaign, Illinois

Residence: North Bend, Washington

College: University of Northern Iowa (undergrad), University of Georgia (graduate school)

College major: Business degree in Marketing

Website: &

Twitter: @chriscfagan

Facebook: Chris Fagan

Instagram: chriscfagan

YouTube: Chris Fagan

Short bio: Chris Fagan and her husband became the first American married couple to ski without guide, resupply or other assistance to the South Pole—and became Guinness World Record holders. She has summited Denali, in Alaska; run 100-mile trail races through the mountains; canoed the hippo-laden Zambezi River, in Zimbabwe; paddled and sailed 750 miles through the Inside Passage; and biked through remote Tanzania. Chris is a wife, mother and business owner who loves to get her hands dirty and feet wet. Her adventurous spirit shines through in her work as a writer, speaker, trainer, and consultant.

When not outdoors playing in the wild, you’ll find Chris leading creative discussions in corporate conference rooms and at off-site locations around the country. For over two decades, Chris and her company, SparkFire, have helped Fortune 500 companies develop innovative new products and services. Along the way, she’s trained hundreds of people in creative thinking processes. A popular keynote speaker, Chris consistently gains praise for her dynamic style and natural spark. She lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband, teenage son, and two labs, Winston and Kiya. “The Expedition” is her first book.

How often do you fly? Once a month.

How many countries have you been to? 32

How many continents have you been to? All seven.

Earliest travel memory: Driving three hours to Six Flags Amusement Park with my family (two parents, five kids) in the summer if 1972.

Favorite American city: Seattle, diversity of food, access to endless adventures in the mountains and water.

Favorite international city: Sydney, Australia.

Least favorite country: Haven’t found one I don’t like.

Friendliest people in the world: Tanzanians, with Nepalese a close second.

Favorite World Heritage Site: Olympic National Park.

Favorite airline: Delta.

Favorite aircraft type: 747 (particularly when siting in the nose on the second floor in business class).

Aisle or window: Aisle for a quick exit.

Favorite airport lounge: Delta lounge in Seattle.

Favorite U.S. airport: Denver International Airport.

Favorite international airport: Amsterdam, super clean, happy friendly people, good food.

Favorite hotel: Sun Mountain Lodge Resort.

Favorite cruise line: Any smaller ship that sails to Antarctica.

Favorite travel credit card: American Express Delta Reserve.

Favorite island: Rarotonga, one of the Cook Islands in the South Pacific.

Favorite beach: Unnamed beach (near Labuhan Pandon) on the northeast coast of Lombok in Indonesia.

Favorite National Park: Mt. Rainier National Park.

Favorite fancy restaurant: The Herbfarm, a fixed-price, nine-course menu paired with local wine at a rural inn in Woodenville, Washington.

Favorite hole-in-the-wall: Il Paesano Ristorante Italiano in North Bend, Washington.

Favorite fruit: Fresh mango served on the slopes on Mt. Kilimanjaro.

Favorite food: Thai, especially tom kah gai soup, pad see ew and panang curry.

Least favorite food: Fried fast food.

Drink of choice (in the air and on the ground): Water with a splash of fresh-squeezed lime juice.

Favorite travel movie(s): Sappy dramas (especially true stories).

Favorite travel show(s): Reruns of Parks & Rec.

Favorite travel podcast(s): “Good Life Project Podcast.”

Favorite travel book(s): Non-fiction adventure stories like “Into the Wild” by Jon Krakauer, “Swimming to Antarctica” by Lynne Cox and “Braving It” by James Campbell.

Right now I am reading: “Paddling North: A Solo Adventure Along the Inside Passage” by Audrey Sutherland.

Top 3 favorite travel newsletters/magazines/blogs:,

Favorite travel website(s)—besides, of course!

5 things you bring on a plane: Phone charger, earphones, e-reader, bottled water, healthy snacks.

What do you always seem to forget? Sunglasses.

What do you like least about travel? Adjusting to major time zone changes.

Favorite travel app(s): Google Maps, Uber, airline apps.

Most embarrassing travel moment: Flying five hours across country to a business conference and arriving a week before it started!

Worst travel moment: Being held up at gunpoint and tied up and abandoned in the middle of nowhere in Mexico. The bad guys stole my rental car and left me unharmed.

What’s your dream destination? Bhutan.

Favorite travel charity: Habitat for Humanity.

Best travel tip: Expect the unexpected.


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