For McCool Travel’s 165th travel interview, I am pleased to present Harvey Silikovitz from H-Bomb’s Worldwide Karaoke. I have know Harvey online for a long time, met him a few times in person, and recently saw him in his current hometown of New York City. His reason for traveling is a fun one, which you might have guessed from the title and first sentence.
Harvey Silikovitz’ bio: “Harvey “H-Bomb” Silikovitz is a practicing attorney in New York City who travels the world as much as possible when he can get away from the office. He enjoys combining his passions for travel and karaoke, and as of late January 2018, he has karaoked in 54 countries, 42 U.S. states, and 3 Canadian provinces. When travelling, his interests also include seeing great architecture and learning about the histories of destinations. H-Bomb chronicles his adventures on his blog, H-Bomb’s Worldwide Karaoke, which features videos of his karaoke performances from around the globe.”
Harvey Silikovitz: H-Bomb’s Worldwide Karaoke
West Orange, New Jersey—also the hometown of Sharknado star Ian Ziering. However, I have lived in Manhattan for over 22 years now. Also, most people who know me are unaware that I was actually born in the Midwestern part of the U.S., in Urbana, Illinois.
ALWAYS IN MY LUGGAGE …
(defining “luggage” to include my daypack that I always carry on as well as my suitcase): my laptop, smartphone, phone charger, Kindle, and DSLR. I also never leave home without a basic first-aid and medicinal kit, including things like ibuprofen, NyQuil, and a thermometer. Especially when I’m overseas, it’s nice to not have to worry about finding the right over-the-counter medication at a local pharmacy.
3 FAVORITE HOME-AWAY-FROM-HOME PLACES …
- Las Vegas (This August, I’ll be visiting Sin City for the 11th consecutive year)
- Washington, DC (where I lived for 3 years while in law school)
- United Kingdom (I’m an Anglophile and have visited the U.K. 9 times, with 8 of those excursions having included some time in London).
A FAVORITE TRAVEL MEMORY …
Overcoming my fear of heights to make the vertiginous climb, much of it along a cliffside, to reach the Tiger’s Nest monastery in Paro district, Bhutan. The views were spectacular, but completing the trek despite my acrophobia was the most satisfying aspect of the climb.
3 FAVORITE TRAVEL BRANDS …
I don’t know if it’s a “travel brand” strictly speaking, but I think Samsung smartphones make great travel companions. Otherwise, I’m not loyal to any particular brand when it comes to things like luggage or hotels.
3 MONEY-SAVING TRAVEL TACTICS I USE …
- Instead of taxis, take Ubers or Lyfts—or, where feasible, public transportation—to and from the airport. For example, when flying out of JFK or Newark airports in the NYC area, I usually take the Airtrains that serve those airports.
- Use mass transit, or even walk, to get around the city. Riding a city’s metro or buses also makes me feel more like a local. When you must take a car to reach a site of interest, use a local taxi rather than the private car and driver that the hotel will try to talk you into using (although in some countries, even hiring a car and driver for the day can be relatively inexpensive).
- I consolidate as many of my flights as possible within airlines in one alliance, and also use a credit card branded with my primary airline loyalty program. This enables me to maximize my points despite my part-time traveller status, which results in more award travel and relatively cheap upgrades to business class on long-haul flights on which I need to get some sleep. I admit that I could still be much better at travel hacking.
3 WAYS THAT I HAVE FUN WHILE TRAVELING …
- Playing blackjack when I find a casino (note: this is definitely not one of my money-saving tactics!)
- Finding a great vantage point to see a city skyline or other beautiful site lit up at night.
8 WORD (OR LESS) TRAVEL MANTRA …
“My favourite destination is always the next one.”
FAVORITE NON-TRAVEL WEBSITE …
Learned League (it’s an online trivia league that I compete in, with over 10,000 competitors from around the world)
FAVORITE SOUVENIR …
I actually have an extensive collection of miniature replicas of famous buildings and landmarks from around the globe.
I AM FORTUNATE TO HAVE MET …
Cesar Millan (the “Dog Whisperer”), at a dog park in Encino, California while visiting friends who lived nearby.
I WOULD LIKE TO MEET …
Alec Trebek, because that would mean I finally made it on to “Jeopardy!” as a contestant (a goal that I have pursued for a long time).
Thank you so much, H-Bomb, for sharing your travel inspiration and tips.
Follow Harvey Silikovitz on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and HBombWorldwide.
McCool Travel presents tips from travel experts in our 5 Minutes travel interview series—featuring travel industry giants, super frequent travelers, and adventurous persons. Check out McCool Travel’s previous travel interviews. Previous 5 Minutes travel interview: Kevin Wilkerson.
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1 thought on “5 Minutes With Harvey Silikovitz of H-Bomb’s Worldwide Karaoke”
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