Twelve Travel Questions with The Planet D

at work

Name: Dave and Deb
Home Base: Toronto, Canada
Last Trip: Peruvian Amazon
Next Trip: Banff Alberta

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

OK, I’m not going to be all boring and list our camera and electronic gear. Instead I’m going to give you the staples for travel that we pack every time….Gold Bond, a lightweight down jacket, sarongs.

2. What is your best remedy for jet lag? 

Jet lag is a constant battle for us but we tend to go against the grain and take that mid-afternoon nap that everyone tells you you’re not supposed to do. It feels so good to get to the hotel, have a shower, and then take a nap for an hour or so. We then get on with the day, try to stay up until a decent hour and turn in for the night. For the most part, we can always sleep through the night. It’s getting up that’s the problem.

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

The blogger in me says take photos and video. The traveler says, check out the bathroom and then flop on the bed.


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

I know it’s everyone’s go-to answer, but Thai Food. Thailand has the best food. Worst food, Mongolia. Contrary to popular belief, there aren’t any Mongolian Grills in Mongolia. Haha.

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

That would also have to be Thailand. I say that because it was the first truly foreign place Dave and I travelled together for an extended period of time. It was 2000 and it was completely new and exciting. It was here that we caught the adventure bug and realized that there was life outside the film business. Before that trip, we only focused on money and careers. After that trip, we focused on living a full life.

6. What is your favorite travel quote? 

I have so many. We actually post a quote a day with one of Dave’s travel images on our Facebook fan page and looking through quotes is one of my favourite parts of my daily routine. When it comes to choosing a favourite, it always depends on my mood. Some days I feel pumped and want to read something really empowering, other days I’m down and need a pick-me-up. But the one that really holds true no matter how many times I hear it or read it is “Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness,” by Mark Twain. It is a quote that holds so much truth. If you travel, you see the world and understand people and different cultures. It’s difficult to be prejudiced once you’ve seen the beauty of the world and kindness of strangers.


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

Yes, but we’re old school. I love “Africa” by Toto and “One Night in Bangkok” from Chess. Dave would probably say “I’ve Been Everywhere” by Johnny Cash. The old school songs just really capture the vibe and flavor of the destination. I have yet to hear a newer song that really captures the essence of travel like the classics. (Or maybe I am just out of touch.)

8. What is your craziest true travel story? 

Well, Dave breaking two vertebrae in his back while cruising down the Peruvian Amazon this past November is pretty high on the list. He had to be airlifted out of the Amazon which turned into a 10-hour ordeal of pain and torture. He then spent a week in the hospital in Iquitos hopped up on serious painkillers while laying flat on his back. He was then finally flown back to Canada via Air Ambulance where he spent another 8 days in hospital and two months recovering. He’s still recuperating and undergoing physiotherapy, but he is going to make a full recovery. Yay!

0 accident in Peruvian Hospital

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

I look to travel videos for inspiration. I want to see people having fun in a place. I want to see the beautiful scenery or get a taste of the culture. A video should grab people and make them want to see more. It should make them feel that they are right there with you. It’s about the hook. You give people gorgeous images, excitement, and adventure and they want to book a flight to experience the destination exactly the way you did!

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

We try to capture the spirit of the destination in our videos. We want people to see the video and say “I want to go there.” Our aim is to keep them upbeat and fun and reflecting our personalities. It’s less about the hard facts and more about the inspiration. I find that I want to watch a video to be inspired and then I will go and do the nitty gritty research of what to do in that destination. What we really want is a story told. It can be a very shallow story arc, but we want a purpose to our videos. It’s not our nature to just walk down the street with a GoPro and selfie cam. We want to shoot it and show us doing adventures or activities while portraying how we’re feeling in the moment.


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

Think about what story you want to tell beforehand. It helps with the editing process and it keeps you from shooting footage aimlessly. I’ll have a shot list in mind where I’ll be thinking about movement and cuts. I am always looking for something to cut to and for a way to move the story along. And make sure to have good sound. Invest in a microphone and pay attention to levels and sound when editing. People will forgive a little bit of shaky camera work, but they won’t forgive terrible sound.

12. What is your best travel tip?

Eat where the locals eat. When you are searching for a place to eat dinner, take a walk in the neighbourhood. Go away from the tourist haunts and look for a restaurant packed with local people. You can almost guarantee the food is fresh, authentic, and affordable.

Watch travel videos by The Planet D here.

dave and deb

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