View From the Wing

Begpacking?

Begpacking? 470 301 Greg Ellifritz

Have you heard of the latest “begpacking” trend?  It’s when a Western tourist runs out of money in a foreign country and sets up as a beggar asking locals for money.  What a strange phenomenon!

 

I can’t say that I’ve seen this more than a couple times in my travels.

 

For more information, take a look at this article that describes the practice in Thailand.

 

Begpacking is shameless behaviour that is outlawed in Thailand and poisons goodwill between cultures

 

Ignorant, ‘cool’ trend continues

Despite this, this ignorance is now a ‘cool’ trend among hip young millennials some of whom continue to come to Thailand. The activities are insulting to the occupations of Thai men and women as well as their right to a livelihood in their own country, something many of these young people have no understanding of apparently. It also, inherently, deeply disrespectful to the laws of the kingdom.”

 

I haven’t been to Thailand since 2013.  With their crazy Covid-19 restrictions, it doesn’t look like I’ll be going back anytime soon.  I’ll give you a “begpacking” update the next time I make it to Asia.

 

 

Police Extortion in Bali

Police Extortion in Bali 629 357 Greg Ellifritz

Last week I wrote about a Nigerian police extortion effort targeting gay folks.  In this week’s installment of police corruption news, here is a video of a couple traffic officers extorting a bribe from a Japanese tourist in Bali.

 

Police Caught On Video Extorting Tourist In Bali

 

The tourist’s motorcycle headlight didn’t work (during a daytime ride).  The fine for the offense is the US equivalent of $7.  The tourist paid a $60 bribe to get out of the ticket.

 

 

If you want information about how to handle interactions like this, I have an entire chapter on the topic in my book Choose Adventure.

 

 

Pandemic Flight Precautions

Pandemic Flight Precautions 283 178 Greg Ellifritz

I just flew out to Phoenix, Arizona to take a training class.  It was my first flight since early February.  Flying in a mask was strange.  Both legs of my flight were completely full.  The planes and airports seemed exceptionally clean.  I guess it remains to be seen if all of these precautions worked, but I am not ill yet.

 

The rules are constantly changing.  We really don’t know what works best.  Most of us are guessing and trying to establish best practices for keeping healthy.

 

I’ve found the articles below to be helpful.  Read them and get some ideas as to what tactics other travelers are employing.  Take Bruce Lee’s advice.  “Absorb what is useful, discard what is useless and add what is specifically your own.”

 

Flying Isn’t Just a Big Coronavirus Risk

 

If You Have To Fly in a Pandemic, Here’s Where to Sit on the Plane

 

How Rules Have Changed at TSA Checkpoints

 

CORONAVIRUS AND TRAVEL: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW (PLUS RESOURCES)

 

I flew on the 4 biggest US airlines during the pandemic to see which is handling it best

 

TSA Changes

TSA Changes 670 300 Greg Ellifritz

Read

TSA Will Start Taking Your Photo At Security Checkpoints

 

More security theater from our TSA.  Be prepared to be photographed the next time you go through airport security.