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: Dr. Ruth Westheimer
Occupation: Psychosexual Therapist
Hometown: Frankfurt, Germany
Residence: New York City
College: Columbia University Teachers College
Short bio: Dr. Ruth K. Westheimer is a sex therapist, author and professor. She is a psychosexual therapist who sprang to national attention in the early 80s with her live radio program, “Sexually Speaking.” She went on to have her own TV program, is the author of 46 books and has over 95,000 followers on Twitter (@AskDrRuth). A one-woman show about her life, “Becoming Dr. Ruth,” has played in New York and other cities while a documentary about her life, Ask Dr. Ruth, can be seen on Hulu. Dr. Ruth teaches at Columbia University’s Teachers College and Hunter College. She lives in New York and has two children and four grandchildren.
How often do you fly? Two dozen or more times a year.
How many countries have you been to? A lot.
How many continents have you been to? All.
Earliest Favorite travel memory: When I first came to New York, from France, I was poor and traveling fourth class. We weren’t allowed on the top deck of the ship, but we snuck up the night before and waited all night in order to see the Statue of Liberty in the morning. It was a bit chilly and we didn’t get any sleep but it was more than worth it. I still get a thrill every time I see her.
Favorite American city: New York.
Favorite international city: Jerusalem.
I have no desire to go to: Top of Mt. Everest.
Friendliest people in the world: Israelis.
Country with the meanest immigration officers: If you smile, they’re all nice.
Favorite World Heritage Site: Western Wall in Jerusalem.
Favorite airline: El Al.
Aisle or window: Window so people can’t stop and ask me questions.
Favorite airport lounge: All of them.
Favorite U.S. airport: LGA because it’s closest to home.
Favorite international airport: Ben Gurion Airport.
Favorite hotel: King David Hotel.
Favorite cruise line: Cunard.
Favorite travel credit card: American Express.
Favorite island: Manhattan.
Favorite beach: The little one near my country home at Oscawana Lake.
Favorite National Park: Statue of Liberty.
Favorite fancy restaurant: The Sea Grill in Rockefeller Center.
Favorite hole-in-the-wall: New Leaf in Ft. Tryon Park.
Favorite fruit: Bananas—I always carry one to give to the driver.
Favorite food: Bagel with cream cheese and lox.
Least favorite food: Caviar, I’m allergic.
Drink of choice (in the air and on the ground): Coffee.
Favorite travel movie(s): Ask Dr. Ruth on Delta and Singapore.
Favorite travel book(s): “Paris For Children.”
Right now I am reading: Ben Gurion’s autobiography because I’m getting an honorary doctorate from Ben Gurion University.
Top 3 favorite travel newsletters/magazines/blogs: National Geographic.
Favorite travel website(s)—besides JohnnyJet.com, of course! I love Hotwire because you can book a last-minute 2-3 night quickie trip with a friend or loved one with their wonderful “mystery” Hot Rate deals. It’s easy and they’ll save you lots of money because they let you book 4-star hotels for 2-star prices, meaning you get to travel more often, for less. They also created America’s Best Cities for a Quickie Index and custom itineraries to help guide travelers to experience the best places in the city.
5 things you bring on a plane: Magazines, a snack and a sweater. I actually sleep on planes, so don’t need very much.
What do you always seem to forget? My housekeeper makes sure I don’t forget anything!
What do you like least about travel? Having to remember what time it is back home.
What do you want your loved one to buy you from an airport Duty Free store? Little dolls like a bobby from London.
Favorite travel app(s): Hotwire because it’s so quick and easy to book a trip and save money.
I’m embarrassed I haven’t been to: The Galapagos.
Worst travel moment: When planes are canceled.
What’s your dream destination? I don’t get to Paris often enough.
Favorite travel charity: All of them.
Best travel tip: If you can make sure to fall asleep on a flight, you’ll be able to literally hit the ground running. You can also go to quickie.hotwire.com to see my “quickie” travel tips for last-minute getaways.