The Research Triangle Park

Recapping RTP180: Travel

By Rtp Contributor Nov 02, 2017

I’ve always wanted to go to California. It’s on my travel bucket list. The culture, the scenery, the mystical and magical land on the complete opposite side of the country has always intrigued me, but I have never gone. Growing up mainly in Indiana we always drove down to Florida. California just wasn’t on the radar for us. Needless to say, this month’s topic has me all types of jealous of the world travelers who took the stage for RTP180. Below are my recaps of this month’s speakers:

Josh Adell – Reward Stock

Josh kicked off our travel night by explaining that he used to be a travel chump. A chump in general means a naïve person easily taken advantage of. A travel chump is someone who pays more than they should to for travel and ignores travel rewards. A travel chump has plenty of misconceptions around travel rewards and point-based credit cards. They think it’s too complicated. Keeping track and transferring points is just too much effort.  The solution: computers! Computers can look at every possible flight option and identify the best flight and the best way to use points.

To earn a one-way ticket to Hawaii and one night in a low-end hotel, one must travel around the world twenty times and stay in mid to high-end hotel rooms at least forty times. Only chumps earn points this way. Real experts use credit card sign-up bonuses. A lot of cards have “signup bonuses” and “spending bonus” such as spend $2k with a new card and get 100,000 bonus travel points, which is a round-trip domestic flight.

Finally, a chump thinks that credit cards are too risky. If you know how to use cards responsibly, your credit score can actually go up. If you use your card and pay it off every month, your credit will actually go up. I’ll admit it, I’m a travel chump but after hearing Josh share that his boss took a $40,000 trip and didn’t pay a dime for it, I’m tired of being a chump.

Watch Josh’s talk HERE.

Marcey Rader – Best-selling author

Marcey came ready to share her best tips for those who often find themselves 30,000 feet in air versus their two feet on the ground. She shared her 3 T Tips to Survive the Tarmac Treadmill:

Touch or tap once – Rings dings and buzzes on your phone. We pick up our phone out of boredom and get sucked into an email black hole. Email is pointless on a phone unless you can delete it or reply in less than 2 minutes. If you can tell by the subject line that you need to spend time thinking through a response, don’t even open it!

Transfer Responsibility – Marcey automates everything she can all the way down to her groceries. She has only been in a grocery store five times this entire year. She went on to explain that she sat on a plane and ordered groceries off of InstaCart to be delivered several hours after the landed, she went home showered and unpacked in time for fresh groceries to arrive at her door.

Take the Day – When you travel across time zones, jet lag is a real thing. It can take 6-11 hours to overcome. It affects the way you function in various ways. Take the day off after you travel across time zones.

Marcey dives in a little deeper in her RTP180 talk HERE for those interested in really mastering the tarmac treadmill.

Hank and Amy Hoffmeier – The Wanderlust Dilemma

Instead of watching a movie or reading through a book, Hank and Amy use travel to educate their children because of the hands on learning style. I’ll do my best to outline all their trips, but I’m sure I’ll miss a few. They’ve gone to Mount Rushmore, numerous National Parks, they took a scenic road trip through the entire book of Little House on the Prairie, Prague and Germany to hang out with animals, Badlands National Park, Rome and other international stops. I honestly can’t keep up. It’s amazing the adventures they are taking their kids on. I’m 33 years old and I’ve only been out of the country once. I’m a bit jealous to be honest.

Interested in learning more about where to take your kids (or me) – watch Hank and Amy’s 180 talk HERE.

Cat Crews – Unanchor Travel Guides

Cat ended our night with more of a “fireside story” as she sat on a stool and lead us down the path of one of her traveling adventures full of details, memories, and inspiration. Through her trip’s inspiration, she went out to start Unanchor which provides digital self-guided tour itineraries – so you can stop researching your travel destination and start enjoying your holiday.

I really encourage you to watch Cat’s 180 talk as she does a nice job taking us on a trip down memory lane with her fireside story.

Much like a vacation, all good things must come to an end. No, we aren’t saying goodbye to RTP180 but we are saying goodbye to Anna Rhyne who has been instrumental in the success of this event since day one. Anna books the speakers, organizes the PowerPoints, deals with me, and pretty much runs the show. Anna, 180 would not be where it is today without your hard work. Hats off to you for everything you have done and it’s been an absolute pleasure working on this with you. Come back and visit anytime.

For the rest of you, we’ll see you all next month as we dive into Nanotechnology on November 16th.

Until next time…