5 Minutes With Charles McCool

For McCool Travel’s 50th travel profile, I am pleased to introduce you to …
Wait a second. 50th? Wow. I should do something special for number 50.
You recall that I turned 50 earlier this year?
That’s right! McCool Travel’s 50th profile is ME, Charles McCool.
I also intentionally delayed the profile by one day to coincide with a very special day at Casa de McCool. The twins turn 18 years old today. Happy birthday to Andrew and Katherine. I love you more than I can tell you and more than you will ever know.
If you would like to be included in a future McCool Travel profile interview, please let me know.
Let’s hear from the character behind McCoolTravel.com.
Charles McCool

Charles McCool

Born in Spain. Grew up primarily in South Florida. Lived in Northern Virginia for past 19 years.
Always in my luggage…
Camelbak filtered water bottle, iPod Shuffle with ear buds, everything else (as I only fly with carryon)
3 favorite home-away-from-home places…
an unpaved road, a beach, anywhere new and different
A favorite travel memory is…
Checking in for my Sydney to Cairns flight, I asked the ticketing agent (before online checkin) if I could move closer to front of plane. He said he was new but would try. I ended up being the only passenger in the upper deck (747). Taught me to always ask. You never know!
3 favorite travel brands…

  1. Yelp
  2. JetBlue
  3. < this space available for rent >

3 money-saving travel tactics I use are…

  1. visit farm stands, bakeries, and grocery stores
  2. track prices. book airfares and hotel rooms during sales.
  3. scrimp on lodging by begging friends (couch or floor is fine), Couchsurfing, hostels, HotelCoupons.com. I have slept in my car during road trips.

3 ways that I have fun while traveling are…

  1. explore without an itinerary
  2. have a quest, like finding great homemade ice cream
  3. unplug (mostly) on trips. Spend less time looking at the screen and more time observing the scene.

8 word (or less) travel mantra…
Save money. Go travel. Or just go travel.
My favorite non-travel website…
probably Twitter
most memorable souvenir…
happy family photos, dozens of decks of cards, boomerangs
McCools Disney Cruise
favorite cheap eat…
BBQ, ice cream, and baked goods. Sometimes in the same meal.
recent discovery…
bahn mi
I am fortunate to have met…
Samantha Brown. Pauline Frommer. Barbara Winter. Suzanne Hogsett inspired me to dream of teaching others to travel better. And, of course, Julie McCool.
I would like to meet…
Anyone interested in seeing the world. Rick Steves, Jimmy Buffett, Les Brown. I can think of hundreds of others.
Charles McCool

Thank you very much, Charles. [editor note: “You are welcome.”]. Thank you to my fellow 49 profile subjects and to my readers. May all of your travels be enjoyable and memorable.
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Check out McCool Travel’s previous profilesMcCool Travel presents tips from travel experts in our 5 Minutes interview series—featuring travel industry giants, super frequent travelers, and adventurous persons. Previous 5 Minutes post: Kelly Murray.

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8 thoughts on “5 Minutes With Charles McCool”

  1. I share your ideas about having more fun when you travel. Can’t always manage the no itinerary thing, but have always loved exploring that way when I can.

  2. I am proud to be the first profile post master. Happy belated 50th to you and 18th to the the twins. Please put Traveling Ted as number 3 favorite travel brand (check is in mail). I love the line “less time looking at the screen and more time checking out the scene.” I will definitely use that one with proper attribution of course.

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