EatWith is like Airbnb for food, and that’s freaking awesome.
For around US$35 – $50 per head, travelers can book dinner in the kitchen of a native who’s looking to meet new people and do the cooking to boot. You’ll get regional dishes that typically aren’t available in restaurants, plus tips that aren’t found in guide books and maybe even make a friend.
Food is such a pronounced and vital part of a culture, and eating with someone is such an intimate, social act, that I’m blown away by how ingenious this is. I’ve often said that I want to know a culture’s real cuisine, as in, what does someone cook for their family on a random Tuesday night? Here’s a chance to get the true answer. The real deal.
Flying for iPhone, still in public beta, wants to be on my iPhone so badly I can hear it whispering, “Install meeeee.” This seriously good-looking app shares information you’d expect like departure and arrival times, terminal and gate info (both sides) and weather. It’s also a bit playful, presenting your route data in a fun, novel way (see the video above).
The social aspect looks great, and reminds me of the bits of Gowalla that I enjoyed so much. You can receive “stamps” for achievements and share/compete with your traveling friends. For example, “You crossed the Atlantic Ocean!” Who among your buddies has racked up the most miles?
I don’t have any flights planned in the immediate future (I *might* go to Florida in a few weeks), but I’ll try out Flying as soon as I do. It looks great.
Travel iPhoneography is a weekly series of photos of our beautiful world, taken with an iPhone. If you have one you’d like to share, let me know at [comments at 52tiger dot net]. I’d love to feature it.
The service is currently available at three Texas airports only (DFW, Love Field and Austin), but the company expects to be in seven different markets by the end of 2013. According to the app’s description in Apple’s App Store, you can “…exit the plane, and walk directly to your silver Audi A4.”
Just don’t lose your rental agreement, or you’re…well, you know.
There’s an app for today’s mobile one-percenter. BlackJet‘s private jet service is now taking reservations via its iPhone app.
You can book a seat up to two days in advance of your departure date and travel between San Francisco, New York, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Boston and South Florida. As you might expect, it ain’t cheap. I searched for an AM flight between Boston and “South Florida” (I don’t know which airport, actually) and was quoted $2,368.90.
To protect itself from people who would waste their time (like me), BlackJet booking requires a membership plus a one-time membership fee of $2,500. But the benefit is, if you can swing it, you get a guaranteed seat in your preferred time frame on a very nice airplane.
BlackJet says additional cities are coming soon and that well-behaved pets are welcome on board. The company recently received $5 million in funding, according to Galding, and Ashton Kutcher is reportedly a customer.
Soon you’ll be able to watch your lost luggage travel farther and farther away. The concept Bag2Go from Airbus is the result of a collaboration between T-Mobile and German luggage maker Rimowa. Aside from your skivvies, there’s a GPS tracker, a 2G mobile radio and an RFID chip inside the bag, recording its whereabouts. Additionally, a companion iPhone app lets you monitor the bag’s location. There’s even a scale built into the handle, so you can weight it by simply picking it up.
For now, there are no plans to put the technology into consumer luggage, but Airbus may license the Bag2Go to airlines so that travelers can rent them on a short-term basis. Sounds cool, but wouldn’t you rather own one of these bags instead of renting it from the airline?
You may carry small knives on airplanes except that you may not.
The US government has done a 180 on a recent decision that would allow passengers to carry small knives (those under 2.36 inches long), bats and golf clubs onto planes. Several airline CEOs, lawmakers, and relatives, friends and victims of terrorist attacks balked at the idea, and now the TSA has changed its mind. Again.
So keep your commemorative Yankee Stadium bat and Tom Mix pocket knife in your checked luggage. Unless you want a friendly TSA agent to take it home.