My Computer Hates Me

Your Help is Needed, Please, to Keep the Travel Insider Afloat and Operational.
Your Help is Needed, Please, to Keep the Travel Insider Afloat and Operational.

Good morning

My computer hates me.  I’ve long suspected this to be so, and Friday confirmed it.

Over the course of a year, I include links to hundreds of different articles in the newsletters you get every week, and of course they work, as you’d expect.  Click the link, and there you are on the webpage the link points to.  But on Friday, I included a very important link and it got mangled.

Normally it doesn’t matter to me whether you click the links or not, but on this rare occasion, it truly did matter.  Yes, it was the link to allow you to contribute to the 2015 Travel Insider Annual Fundraising Appeal!  Aaaagh.

I also realized over the weekend that I’ve yet to point out one more reason why you should choose to become a supporter of The Travel Insider.  And rather than just tell you, I thought it better to show you.

One of the considerable costs I incur each year is buying items to review.  For example, just a couple of weeks ago I bought two of Amazon’s amazing new Fire tablets to review for you – I already have an older Fire tablet, a Nexus 7, and two iPads (all purchased for earlier reviews) and had absolutely no personal need for or benefit from buying two more tablets, but I not only wanted to give you a real hands-on review of the amazing $50 7″ Fire tablet, but also to compare it side by side with the $150 8″ Fire tablet, so you could best understand which you should get (here’s the review).

You probably know or guess that many reviewers get free samples to review.  I don’t, because I refuse to play by those rules – “We give you free samples, you give us glowing reviews”.

Here’s another example of a costly review, immediately below this note.  It is a discussion of the benefits of traveling with a portable external monitor, in addition to the screen in your laptop.  Included within the theory is a specific review of a $190 monitor I bought from Amazon last week to base the article on.  I didn’t buy the cheapest monitor to review – what is the point in that?  You want a review of the best choice, not the cheapest choice.  And I didn’t do, as some reviewers do, a ‘pretend’ review without actually having the unit in front of me.

I need to review the new updated Bose QC25 noise cancelling headphones.  I’ve reviewed all their former models (QC1, QC2, QC3 and QC15), as well as many other products from other manufacturers.  But that’s a $300 item – again not something I personally need because I’ve a closet full of noise cancelling headphones already, but it would be a valuable review to help you decide if you should spend $300 instead of $30 on a set of noise cancelling headphones, or if you already have high end headphones, if the QC25 headphones are worth upgrading to.

There are lots more road-warrior tools I’d love to review.  How about one of the new smart watches – haven’t you wondered if there’s really any value in one or not?  Are they gimmicks, truly useful, or should you wait for them to go up in features (and battery life) and down in price?

Another example –  I’m sensing a profound change in Microsoft’s product line – whereas we’ve all happily sneered at Microsoft’s clumsy attempts to get into the tablet marketplace, its disastrous purchase of Nokia, and the extraordinary fail that was Windows 8; my feeling is that Microsoft is regaining its moxie and maybe needs to be more carefully considered.  But buying one of their new Surface Pro 4 tablets – and perhaps then putting that alongside an iPad Pro – that is currently an impossible to justify cost.

Heck, there are even some new sleeper/pillow devices out there that perhaps need to be tried out!

Please help me to continue publishing reviews, many times of things you might not otherwise think of or be up to current speed on.

Plus, not so much a review as a ‘hold their feet to the fire’, I’ve an interesting exchange of emails with American Airlines to share with you later in the coming week.  Please help me to continue providing a small element of accountability to the airlines and their capricious unfriendly acts against us.

So now, with hopefully the correct working links, here are the four easy and quick ways you can help.  I hope you’ll choose to do so.

Four Easy Ways to Support the Travel Insider

1.  Simply click this link now to send in any one-off amount via secure credit card/Paypal payment.  Any amount, and any currency – all is welcome!

2.  If you’d prefer, email me (or fax to 206 338-3381) your credit card number, expiry, code on back, billing zip code and the amount you’d like to contribute and I’ll process it through Square rather than Paypal.  If you’re concerned about security, by all means send the details split over two messages.

3.  For ongoing ‘voluntary subscriptions’ please visit this page.

4.  Yes, there’s a place for ‘the old fashioned’ way too!  Simply mail a check to The Travel Insider, 17321 NE 31st Ct, Redmond WA 98052 – and please be sure to enclose your email address so I know who to email and thank.


Many thanks indeed.  I hope you enjoy the review immediately following, the reviews earlier in 2015, 2014, etc, and – all going well – more of the same into 2016 and beyond.

Lastly, noting my comment above about holding the airlines’ feet to the fire, sometimes many a true word is spoken in jest.  And who better to poke fun at the airlines than Carol Burnett.

Until Friday, please enjoy safe travels






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