Traveling around the world in 24 days can be a little hectic.  Doing it by private jet less so.  And doing it under the high touch guidance of the best in the private jet industry, TCS Expeditions, is positively serene.   I have just completed an amazing expedition with TCS staying at all Four Seasons hotels and resorts and you can find some of my highlights on other posts.  My itinerary included: Seattle, Tokyo, Beijing  (then a brief detour as I flew to California to make a speech), Istanbul, St. Petersburg, Marrakech and finally Boston.  So I really travelled around the world twice in 24 days and it was wonderful!

This post is about what tech I used to document this trip and share it world wide.  Below are my conclusions peppered with samples of photos from all for you to compare yourself.

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Private Dinner on the Great Wall of China. Taken with Nokia Lumia Icon

I packed:  MacAir, iphone5s, Nokia Lumia Icon phone (windows), Nokia Tablet (Windows) and my Samsung Galaxy camera.   And here are my conclusions after circling the globe in the most luxurious style.  I should also note that one wonderful advantage of staying at all Four Seasons Hotels and resorts is that every room had multiple plugs in all the right places( next to the bed too thank you!) and always had US style plugs or adaptors already in the room.  High speed wifi was included for guests on this trip so set up in each new city was a breeze.


Snake Charming in Marrakech, Morocco Taken with iphone5s


MacAir is my always go to travel companion. It fits in my large handbag, is impervious to damage and give me a keyboard and screen that works on every airplane tray table.

iphone5 is my lifeline when I travel.   I have 5 email accounts loaded, and am set up with all my social media networks.  I also depend on Evernote to save and share my drafts from all devices.  ProCamera app on iphone allows me take better pictures on the iphone and  to edit and size photos for social media.  Flipgram app lets me create videos to share my photos in a video format that is fun. See last video.  So all is wonderful with Apple, but I always have a back up.


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The Serene Imperial Gardens of Tokyo Taken with Nokia Lumia Icon

My Nokia Lumia Icon phone takes the most amazing photos. Ann Tran introduced me to this phenomenal camera when we were traveling in Russia with Viking River Cruises and I have never looked back.  A 41 megapixel camera really makes a difference as you can see and downloading all photos to the cloud SkyDrive, allows me to pull them up on all devices, even my iphone.  I use it solely to take photos and sometime to post through the Windows Instagram app AND when something terrible happens to my iphone…..


Spice Market in Marrakech, Morocco Taken with Samsung Galaxy


My Nokia Tablet is perfect for posting blog post directly to my site using their perfect Windows interface.  A keyboard is a must and this is then my back up computer.

My Samsung Galaxy camera is fabulous and also the best binoculars I have ever used.   If I need to see the details of mosaics in the dome of a church, this is my go to friend.  I can also post directly to all my social media from this camera/ computer but find the keyboard challenging so usually pull my photos from Google Plus (have set up an automatic download that keeps them private until I want to post them)  on either my MacAir or iphone to post.   I did make one egregious error using this camera.  It is an android device and one that I had failed to load antivirus software and yes, you guessed it.  The moment I entered Beijing, I was hacked and everyone in my gmail address book received spam/phishing links. I dutifully changed my password, loaded some new anti-virus software and thought I was now clear.  That was until I visited Russia a week later…..    Yep, hacked again and all my (many now former friends 🙁   ) received more spam.  I am still apologizing.  But the spammers have the address book and according to google, no amount of password changing, two step verifications etc will stop them until they decide to stop spamming.   I think most of my list now knows, I never send links and many spam filters picked up on these.


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Amazing Mosaics at Top of Dome at Church of Spilled Blood, St. Petersburg Taken with Zoom on Samsung Galaxy Camera


New Faberge Museum, St. Petersburg, Russia Take with iphone5s



So all went smoothly until Apple announced their new IOS 8 download.  Stupid overtook my brain and sitting in my room in St. Petersburg, Russia at 11 pm at night, I decided to download it on my iphone.  My phone crashed,  and my only choice was to “Reset it to Factory Settings” and pray the Cloud worked to save all my information.  Did I mention all my passwords are saved on an app on the iphone and nowhere else—again very stupid and now rectified.   I pushed reset and prayed.  4 hours later, yes at 3 am, my phone was like new….with none of my content.  The next step, to download everything from the Cloud took another 8 hours plus and wasn’t completed until two days later in Marrakech.  Thank god for my Nokia Lumia and Samsung.

The Recreated Amber Room, Catherine Palace, Russia Taken with full Zoom of Samsung Galaxy because no photos allowed inside the room.


The Catherine Palace, Russia Taken with Samsung Galaxy

M conclusions, besides don’t ever update your tech while traveling,  are that I will always need at least this many tools to travel.  My iphone for communications (maybe the 6s that should be arriving soon will take better pictures), my Nokia Lumia for photos and my Samsung for zoom photos and back up.


Please note:  Verizon has invited me to be a part of their “Lifestyle Blogger” group, #VZWBuzz.   Per our agreement they send me free devices to check out and I share my conclusions.  I do not promise positive reviews or any other quid pro quo.  The opinions I express about the devices and about all my travels are my own and never edited or compromised by “advertorial” promises.

6 thoughts on “Around the World By Private Jet : Travel and Tech

  1. Amazing trip and well documented with a nice balance of tech. Is that you on the Great Wall in the blue dress? The contrast makes for a fabulous photo! Thank you for sharing these adventures with us. So much traveling to do…so little time… 😉 G

  2. Jean, what a fun trip. I know it was work-related but it looks like you were able to truly enjoy your work. I can imagine how frustrating it must have been to have your phone crash. It’s panic-inducing when it happens at home but being half-way around the world must have required all your sanity not to totally freak out. Good thing you had some redundancy to protect much of what you needed so it didn’t slow you down.

    1. It was an amazing trip Sara. ( And I did manage to have far too much fun to call it work!) I nearly cried when my phone crashed wondering how I would survive, but after many hours, the Cloud came through and restored it. But had I not had my Nokia Lumia and Samsung, I would have missed two days of photographs in St. Petersburg which would have been a tragedy. Thanks!

  3. Jean – wow what a trip!! sounds so incredible and thank you for the tips on how you used your tech gear – that was super super useful.
    I agree with you re Four Season properties. We just stayed at the Four Seasons in Dublin and it was so beautiful, elegant, comfortable and yes, plugs in all the right places especially when you consider we traveled with our teen daughter!!
    Thank you for sharing your experience.

  4. Thanks so much Monica. I love the Four Seasons in Dublin and they make travel so easy, that you can spend more time exploring ( and sharing!).

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