Stefanie Michaels, known to her 1.5 million-plus Twitter followers as Adventure Girl®, is a travel expert. The world traveler has doled out travel advice to shows like “The Rachael Ray Show,” and chatted with Al Roker.
A regular on “Access Hollywood Live,” Michaels was dubbed a short while ago as “America’s Tweetheart” by Vanity Fair.
Her Web site, AdventureGirl.com, attracts millions looking for tips for the ultimate in lodging and unique destinations the world over. Today, she lends her years of globe-trotting to the readers of OneTravel.
One Travel: What's your secret to lasting a long-haul flight? How do you exit the plane without looking like you've just sat in a seat while crossing the Pacific?
Stefanie Michaels: Sleep. I always try and take a red-eye on international flights. Some people prefer window seats to lean and sleep – not me. I need an aisle for easy access in and out of my seat. To sleep, I use my tray table, and place my soft carry on/big purse as a pillow. I can lean forward and get some rest.
I always change on a flight longer than four hours. I’ll bring comfy sweats to sit and sleep in, then change back into my clothes just before landing. Your clothes won’t be wrinkled and stale, and you’ll feel refreshed with a change. I keep wondering when planes will have changing areas!
OT: You've traveled all over the world. If there is one piece of advice you could give to people stepping foot out of the country for their first time, what would it be?
Michaels: With excessive international bag fees and lost luggage, get used to packing two weeks of clothes into a carry-on. I’m not kidding. If I can do it, anyone can do it.
Unless you’re going to the Outback or somewhere remote, you can always purchase products like hair things, lotions, etc., where you are going. Those things take up space, and can add extra weight into luggage. More weight = more baggage fees.
Guys have it a whole lot easier with packing. Take one pair of jeans, a couple pairs of socks, a half-dozen shirts, a few pairs of underwear. Same goes for ladies, plus add one neutral pair of heels, one pair of flats. Leave flip-flops at home, those can be purchased anywhere. To change-up looks, purchase unique accessories where you travel to. This works two-fold – you save space on the way to your locale with packing, and you bring home accessories as souvenirs. And, wash and wear as you go.
OT: What is the most adventurous thing you have done in your travels? Where was it?
Michaels: I can’t pick just one. I’d say, swimming with three nine-foot lemon sharks below me and one curious black tip circling me in Bora Bora; climbing a glacier in Iceland; and doing a zero gravity adventure over the Las Vegas desert in a specialized plane that gets you into zero gravity with astronaut Buzz Aldrin.
I’m a thrill seeker, so what I consider “adventurous” might not be someone else’s view of what they would consider adventure. I always say, “adventure is an extension of one’s curiosity,” each person has different levels of this, so it’s all subjective to every individual.
I say try what feels good for you. But, also just try something a little out of your comfort zone. I’ve learned that there really isn’t too much to fear in life, except not living it. So, get out there and live it to “your” fullest.
OT: If you could fly anywhere in the world, where would you go and why? You can only pick one country!
Michaels: Antarctica. It’s on my shortlist. I’d like to get there to see it before it may not be there. I’m fascinated with penguins. They are my favorite animal since I was a little girl. I want to be surrounded by them, in the cold, at the Pole, and a place of unique beauty.
OT: Travel is …
Michaels: Happiness, educational, emotional, momentous, adventurous!