Monthly Archives: October 2013

Twelve Travel Questions with Two for the Road

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Name: Nikki and Dusty Green (Two for the Road)
Home Base: Austin, TX
Last Trip: Crater Lake, OR
Next Trip: The End of the World
Website: www.twofortheroad.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/teamtwofortheroad
Twitter: @teamtwo4theroad

1. What are three things you take on every trip? 

We pack all the essentials of course, but we’re always sure to take our cameras, laptops and plenty of rubber bands. Never know when you’ll need one, you know.

2. What is your best remedy for jet lag? 

Rest. Plain and simple. Even though a few hours’ rest is sometimes really, really hard to come by. Oh! And a spicy bloody mary. That always seems to make things right.

3. What is the first thing you do when you get to a new place? 

We always try to get the lay of the land. Usually we try to find a local hole-in-the-wall pub where we can grab a local brew, get on-line and do our research. Research. So much more effective when paired with a cold beer, don’t you think?

4. What place has the best food? The worst food? 

Best food? Austin. Hands down. Which – okay – may sound like a cop-out since we live there, but that doesn’t make it untrue. From barbecue to Mexican to Asian and everything in between. From a killer $100 steak at a fine chophouse to a killer $1.50 taco at a run-down trailer on the side of the road. Our town is home to phenomenal food without being stuck-up about it.

As far as the worst food? Never seen such a place, honestly. If you’re traveling and you can’t find something good to eat you’re: a) not trying hard enough or b) your standards are too high. Our standards are actually really, really low, so….

5. What is one place that changed your outlook on life? 

As odd as it may sound, that would have to be our old house outside of Amarillo, Texas. We both vividly remember the day we looked around that big house – and all the material stuff that we had packed into it – and realized that it was all essentially meaningless. So we sold it all, decided to live a life of travel, and have never looked back. Since then we’ve seen and experienced more of this world than most people can dream, and it’s given new meaning and direction to our lives. So yeah. Don’t worry about buying lots of stuff. It really is mostly just a bunch of crap you don’t need.

6. What is your favorite travel quote? 

It’s so widely used it’s almost cliché, but it’s still one of the best:

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” ~ Mark Twain

Truer words have never been spoken.

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7. Is there any music that inspires you to travel?

Nik: Well, I’m from a really small town. And I love small towns. But whenever I hear songs about small towns it actually makes me want to travel more. I don’t know why really… maybe it has to do with the idea of making an escape and seeing the world. But it makes me feel really blessed, and inspired.

Dusty: I listen to just about anything and everything, from hip-hop to classical to everything in between. But I love music that tells a story… that transports you to a place and time, where you can almost see the landscape and the story in your mind. That inspires me to travel and to tell stories myself. Good stuff.

8. What is your craziest true travel story? 

There are lots, actually. But three things come to mind right off the bat:

  • A few days into our first extended visit to Costa Rica we got caught in the middle of a massive bar fight in Quepos that developed into a near riot. Guys literally smashing beer bottles over other guys’ heads and such. Then worrying about getting knifed on the way home because we had to walk through a dark, terrible neighborhood. Good memory.
  • Getting caught in an awful sandstorm, followed by a power outage, in Uyuni, Bolivia. Missed our train as a result and wound up stranded there for four more days. That was fun.
  • And getting accosted by half a dozen policemen with assault rifles at the bus station in San Miguel de Tucaman, Argentina. Dusty was walking through the station with his laptop open (looking for a wi-fi signal) and they all thought he was up to no good. They surrounded us and a tense interrogation followed. We talked our way out of it, but not before learning a very valuable lesson: there’s no free wi-fi at the bus station in Tucaman.

9. How do you think that travel videos can be useful to travelers, even if they aren’t filmmakers themselves?

Without a doubt, a well done video can give you insight into a location and a culture better than anything out there. There are tons of great blogs and books and guides, photos, etc… but video really is the next best thing to actually being there. It gives you a sense of place like nothing else can, period. And that’s especially useful when you’re traveling somewhere you’ve never been.

10. What is the goal/philosophy of your videos? 

To inform, educate, entertain and inspire. And along the way to try and capture the essence of our personal experiences in each place.

11. What advice do you have for someone who wants to make travel videos?

Just. Do. It. Most importantly though: don’t be intimidated by anyone, or by all the fancy-shmancy technical talk about cameras and accessories and frame rates and compression rates and such. Start small. Start with what you’re comfortable using. It really is as easy as pressing the record button on your phone or your camera, and using it to tell a story. Then do your research and learn as you go. Cruise Tripfilms and watch lots and lots of other travel videos. Pay attention to what you think works and what you think doesn’t work. Ask for help when you need it! And use all that to help you develop your own style. As you hone your skills you will find your groove, grasshopper. But you’ve gotta just do it!

12. What is your best travel tip? 

Be kind. Be humble. Be respectful. Be patient. Smile! Get off the beaten path. Push yourself. Scare yourself. Open your mind. And never take a moment for granted.

Okay… that’s like, ten tips. Sorry.

Bottom line: travel is a privilege that (unfortunately) so many people don’t ever get to really experience. So above all, be thankful. And be careful out there!

Seeking TripVloggers for Cruises

Hi TripVloggers!

We are hoping to send a few Tripfilms TripVloggers on cruises in November to shoot simple smartphone video overviews of different areas of the ship. We’ll cover the cost of the cruise if you can get yourself to the port of departure. Cruises leave November 1st from Miami and November 15th from Tampa, Los Angeles, and New York. Please email Jamie at jamie@tripfilms.com if you’re interested in the job!

Twelve Travel Questions with Gustavo Matias

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1. What are three things you take on every trip?

Skateboard, Phone and Macbook.

2. What is your best remedy for jet lag? 

Eating a whole bunch of different type of candies.

3. What is the first thing you do when you get to a new place? 

Google for skate spots nearby for sure.

4. What place has the best food? The worst food? 

NYC has definitely the best options for delicious food, with many varieties from Brazilian to Thai, etc. The worst food is anywhere they don’t have options for vegetarians =(

5. What is one place that changed your outlook on life? 

Definitely Camp Allen, Bedford – NH.

6. What is your favorite travel quote?  

“Don’t let your dreams be dreams.” I don’t think that’s a “travel” quote, but it inspires me for anything in life.

7. Is there any music that inspires you to travel? 

There are a lot, it depends on my mood and where I’ll be going. Can’t pick one, but generally solo piano songs or some nice MPB with acoustic guitar.

8. What is your craziest true travel story? 

I think when I dressed like a woman and hung out with my other “drag queen” friends, got my body shaved, eyebrows “re-designed”, etc. or traveling to Thailand just to get married–that’s kind of crazy, right?

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9. How do you think that travel videos can be useful to travelers, even if they aren’t filmmakers themselves?

They’re definitely helpful for many things, for example: checking out what food you can eat, places you can visit and things you can do. I think if you’re planning to go somewhere it’s definitely because you saw it somewhere before, magazine, TV or pictures. Videos will help you get a better idea of how it feels to be there.

10. What is the goal/philosophy of your work? 

I’m a programmer at Tripfilms, so I basically spend some time maintaining the tripfilms.com website and backend softwares we have, and I also work on some B2B projects.

11. What is your best travel tip? 

I remember the first time I went to NYC I didn’t even go to Statue of Liberty, Times Square, or the Empire State Building, etc. I was just skating all over the city for 30 days. I guess just pick a place that you can do whatever you dreamed about and be happy doing what you love.

12. Where are you planning to travel next?

I really want to check out San Diego and Japan, wherever the money lets me go first.

You Can Now Watch Tripfilms Videos on Samsung SmartTVs

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If you are lucky enough to have one of those fancy new Samsung SmartTVs, you’ll find a few dozen Tripfilms videos streaming on the “VTV” App. These connected TVs let users download apps to watch videos over the internet instead of only using the cable box to watch TV shows.

Connected TVs that can stream internet video make up a small fraction (about 10%) of the TVs that are in homes today, but this is going to increase as new devices like Google’s Chromecast, AppleTV, and Samsung’s SmartTV help more people watch web video content in the living room on their big screen TVs.

When we started the company 6+ years ago, we thought it would be amazing to have our own TV channel like The Travel Channel. While this isn’t our own TV channel, it’s easy to imagine how we could have our own internet TV App.  (We should start working on that one of these days!) We’re very excited because the videos look fantastic on these big screens and it’s another way travelers can discover Tripfilms.

Tripfilms Videos Featured in New Bing Travel App

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The incredible filmmakers in the Tripfilms community keep coming up with ways to prove that travel videos can be both an inspiration to travelers as well as an excellent resource for travel planning. That’s why we get excited about partnerships that give us an opportunity to bring Tripfilms videos to new audiences. We are happy to announce that Tripfilms will be providing video content for the newly updated Bing Travel App for Windows 8. This app provides a guide to over 2000 destinations worldwide, along with photos, panoramas, videos, information on flights and hotels, and links to dozens of useful travel websites.

You can download the Travel App here.

USA Today Cruise Experience Site Features Tripfilms Videos

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USA Today has launched a new cruise travel site called “Experience Cruise” that is focused on helping people plan and research cruises. As you can see from the screenshot above, it’s a pretty stunning site!

We’re excited to report that the video section features a selection of Tripfilms videos that showcase some of the top cruise ports in the world. It makes us really proud when partners like USA Today highlight some of our amazing filmmakers and their work. Check out the videos on the videos section of the USAT Cruise Experience!

Thursday Is Bubble Tea Day

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Here’s a photo of Omar, Gino, and Jamie enjoying Thursday Bubble Tea.

There is a new bubble tea place that just opened up next to the famous Yip’s Chinese Buffett, which for some reason is Gino’s and Omar’s favorite lunch place. As a bubble tea expert, I can say that Vivi definitely has some unique flavors like Tiramisu, Yakult, and Chocolate Milk bubble tea. Omar has confirmed that the Tiramisu bubble tea is delicious!