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: Maggie Parker
Occupation: Freelance journalist
College: Marymount Manhattan College
College major: Acting
Short bio: Maggie Parker is a NYC-based freelance writer and performer. As a writer, she covers travel, entertainment, and pretty much anything that falls under the lifestyle umbrella. She currently writes for publications including DuJour Magazine, USA Today, People, Men’s Fitness, Refinery29, and she has her own travel column on HelloGiggles.com called Accidental Adventurer.
How often do you fly? About every 6 weeks.
How many countries have you been to? 26
How many continents have you been to? 5
Earliest travel memory: Going to Cape Cod with my family and staying in these teeny tiny cottages that were basically falling apart. It was similar to a trailer park, but not bring your own trailer. And everyone was so friendly. Someone drew caricatures of my sister and I, I remember that vividly.
Favorite American city: NYC duh!
Favorite international city: London.
Least favorite country: I don’t think I could ever dislike a country, there is something to love about even the most miserable places. But the country I am least attracted to is Germany.
Country with the meanest immigration officers: UK… I would know, I was deported at Heathrow…long story.
Favorite World Heritage Site: Cinque Terre—I had no idea this was a World Heritage Site but apparently it is!
Favorite airline(s): jetBlue, Cathay Pacific
Favorite aircraft type: Ummm one that stays in the air?
Aisle or window: Window.
Best flight attendant you’ve ever had: The one who commiserated with me and told me passenger horror stories when the man next to me was watching porn on the flight (she moved my seat as well, of course). Or the man who tucked me in during my LAN flight to Brazil. Great service.
Favorite airport lounge: I honestly cannot remember if it was Hong Kong or Bangkok (same trip) but one of those lounges had really nice showers, multiple floors, and so many meal options.
Favorite U.S. airport: LGA because it’s really easy to get to from my house. JFK because they are so welcoming every time I come home. DFW has a really cool cereal bar that is like ice cream…but for cereal. With all the toppings and everything. So awesome.
Favorite international airport: Definitely not Heathrow! Torino because they found—and returned—my passport.
Favorite hotel: OMG, tough one. The Belmond Mt Nelson in Cape Town. Paradisus Punta Cana. The Modern in Honolulu. Pelican Bay on Grand Bahama Island. The Inn at Bay Harbor in MI.
Favorite cruise line: Only been on one, Azamara.
Favorite travel credit card: Don’t use ’em.
Favorite island: NYC :) or Oahu as of right now.
Favorite beach: It used to be Riomaggiore in Cinque Terre but it’s too crowded now that everyone knows about it. I went to a really beautiful secluded beach in Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica.
Favorite fancy restaurant: I had a really good meal at the restaurant at the Grand Lucayan on Grand Bahama Island. But otherwise, I’m not really a fancy meal type of person.
Favorite hole-in-the-wall: I found a hole-in-the-wall in Madrid that had vegetarian paella, I loved that place.
Favorite bar: The pub across the street from my old flat in London.
Favorite fruit: Grapes.
Favorite food: Pasta.
Least favorite food: Red meat.
Drink of choice (in the air and on the ground): Wine.
Favorite travel movie(s): The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants.
Favorite travel show(s): Do the Real Housewives count? They are always traveling!
Favorite travel book(s): “The Lost Girls,” “How to be Single.”
Right now I am reading: “Hector and the Search for Happiness.”
Top 3 favorite travel newsletters/magazines/blogs: To be honest, I don’t read a TON of travel publications, mostly books. I guess it’s because I write about it all the time.
Favorite travel website(s)—besides JohnnyJet.com, of course! I will always love LostGirlsWorld.com. It will always have a special place in my heart.
5 things you bring on a plane: Ear plugs, eye mask, chapstick, headphones, empty water bottle.
What do you always seem to forget? In general? Sunglasses, regular glasses, some random thing that I’ve been holding onto for ever that is really only useful when traveling but I never remember to bring it. I can’t even think of what that would be right now but I promise you it exists, and it’s in a drawer somewhere in my apartment right now.
What do you like least about travel? Immigration, and the money spent. And the depression that takes place once I get home.
What do you want your loved one to buy you from an airport Duty Free store? Chocolate.
Favorite travel app(s): Google translator. Triposo guides because they work offline!
Most embarrassing travel moment: When I shat my pants on Machu Picchu. Hands down.
Worst travel moment: Getting deported from the UK after being held in Heathrow for 10 hours.
What’s your dream destination? Greece. But I’m also dying to go to Iceland.
Favorite travel charity: Anything for wildlife.
Best travel tip: If you are worried about jetlag, do NOT go to sleep as soon as you reach a bed, unless it is nighttime there. If not, push yourself until it is nighttime where you are. It will feel like torture but you get over jetlag within a day this way—hopefully.