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: Monica Ortega
Occupation: Host of webseries Monica Goes
Hometown: Holt, Michigan
Residence: Los Angeles, California
College: Western Michigan University
College major: Theater and Musical Theater
Facebook: Monica Goes
Pinterest: Monica Goes
YouTube: Monica Ortega
Short bio: I am a TV host, actress, singer, line dance instructor, and adventure junkie! I’ve done it all from riding a bull, to jumping off buildings, to backpacking through Europe. My saying is Try Everything TWICE!
How often do you fly? 3-4 times a year.
How many countries have you been to? 10
How many continents have you been to? 2
Earliest travel memory: Driving across country with my family and all of our luggage came flying off the top of the car. My family had to run around gathering pieces. It was like a scene from a Chevy Chase movie!
Favorite American city: Nashville.
Favorite international city: Ilkley, England.
Least favorite country: I’ve loved every country but I was not a fan of Venice.
Friendliest people in the world: Midwest and Southern Americans.
Country with the meanest immigration officers: England (only because they wanted to deport me to Greece, but every other time I’ve flown there they’ve been great!).
Favorite World Heritage Site: Smokey Mountains but my dream is to hike through Yosemite and I have a sneaking suspicion that will win!
Favorite airline: British Airways and Southwest.
Favorite aircraft type: The bigger the better! Except those double-deckers which seem impossible to stay in the air!
Aisle or window: Always window!
Favorite U.S. airport: Nashville.
Favorite international airport: London Heathrow.
Favorite hotel: Gaylord Opryland in Nashville.
Favorite cruise line: Carnival.
Favorite island: Sardinia.
Favorite beach: Cornwall.
Favorite fancy restaurant: Benihana.
Favorite hole-in-the-wall: PM Sushi in Nashville.
Favorite bar: Wildhorse Saloon.
Favorite fruit: Strawberries.
Favorite food: Burgers and Pizza.
Least favorite food: Haggis.
Drink of choice (in the air and on the ground): Tomato juice in the air and Pinot noir on the ground.
Favorite travel movie(s): Eat Pray Love, Under the Tuscan Sun, Wild, does the Dumb & Dumber roadtrip count?
Favorite travel show(s): All of Samantha Brown’s shows.
Favorite travel book(s): Anything by Bill Bryson; “Neither Here nor There,” “A Walk in the Woods.” And Cheryl Strayed’s “Wild.”
Right now I am reading: “You Are a Badass.”
Top 3 favorite travel newsletters/magazines/blogs: Backpacker, Outdoor, Sunset.
Favorite travel website(s)—besides JohnnyJet.com, of course! PCTA.org, backpacker.com, Kayak.com.
5 things you bring on a plane: Phone, Kindle, cowboy boots, journal, sunglasses.
What do you always seem to forget? A phone charger and a toothbrush (the two most essential items!).
What do you like least about travel? Turbulence.
What do you want your loved one to buy you from an airport Duty Free store? Wine.
Favorite travel app(s): Southwest onboard app, Instagram, Passbook, Yonder, and wherever I’m going I search for new apps that will help.
Most embarrassing travel moment: Having to sleep in a laundry mat in Austria after we camped at the bottom of a mountain and a storm left us floating and flooded.
Worst travel moment: Hiking alone and finding myself at dusk, in a canyon, surrounded by mountain lions caves, and having to walk past two mountain lions.
What’s your dream destination? Yosemite, Alaska, Banff Nat’l Park, and Costa Rica.
Favorite travel charity: Habitat for Humanity and Team World Vision.
Best travel tip: Do whatever the locals do! (Adventures, travel, food, everything!)