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: Quang Dang
Occupation: Executive chef
Hometown: Calgary Alberta
Residence: Vancouver, BC
College: Mount Royal University Calgary
College major: Engineering
Short bio: Quang Dang began his culinary career at West, where he worked as junior Sous Chef. For the next five years, while working his way ever-upward in some of Vancouver’s finest kitchens, Quang quickly established himself as an advocate of sustainability and a champion of west coast cuisine, a role that he continues to undertake in defining his approach to modern cookery.
Raised in Calgary, Alberta with family roots that stretch back to Scotland and the orchards and rice fields of Vietnam, Chef Dang originally moved to Vancouver in 1998 to finish his engineering degree and fulfill a dream to train for the Olympics with Canada’s national field hockey team. Part-time positions in the hospitality industry soon won him over, however, and his culinary career began in earnest.
Quang went on to compete in a number of international food competitions such as the Bocuse D’Or in Lyon France, the National Chaîne des Rôtisseurs in Winnipeg and most recently represented Canadian cuisine at the 2011 European Seafood Exposition in Brussels, the largest of its kind.
How often do you fly? Several times per year.
How many countries have you been to? 10
How many continents have you been to? 4
Earliest travel memory: Australia at 5 years of age.
Favorite American city: New York City, baby!
Favorite international city: Paris.
I have no desire to go to: Russia.
Friendliest people in the world: Canada (“Newfies” to be exact).
Country with the meanest immigration officers: Vietnam.
Favorite World Heritage Site: The National Parks in the Canadian Rocky Mountains.
Favorite airline: Cathay Pacific.
Favorite aircraft type: Avro aero or Boeing 777.
Aisle or window: Window, definitely.
Favorite airport lounge: YVR.
Favorite U.S. airport: Anything but LAX.
Favorite international airport: Heathrow.
Favorite hotel: Ritz Paris.
Favorite island: Tahiti.
Favorite beach: Vung Tau, Vietnam.
Favorite fancy restaurant: French Laundry, West Restaurant and Raymonds.
Favorite hole-in-the-wall: Ba Le Viet subs.
Favorite bar: Inn of Olde, St. Johns, Newfoundland.
Favorite fruit: Durian.
Favorite food: Vietnamese.
Least favorite food: Bad food.
Drink of choice (in the air and on the ground): Beer.
Favorite travel movie(s): Action.
Favorite travel show(s): None.
Favorite travel book(s): Michelin guide.
Right now I am reading: Luke Nguyen’s “Vietnam.”
Top 3 favorite travel newsletters/magazines/blogs: Anthony Bourdain.
5 things you bring on a plane: iPad, water, Sudafed, laptop.
What do you always seem to forget? Putting my chefs knives in my carry-on.
What do you like least about travel? Long lines.
What do you want your loved one to buy you from an airport Duty Free store? Booze. :)
Favorite travel app(s): TripAdvisor, Google Maps.
Worst travel moment: Many. But I recently flew to Calgary from Vancouver and the plane couldn’t land due to fog so it had to turn around. And it was the only flight that night.
What’s your dream destination? Somewhere hot, fancy and where I don’t have to work.
Best travel tip: Don’t sweat the small stuff.