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Travel letters: The joys of going it alone

The joys of going it alone

Thank you for a fantastic issue, “Navigating Solo,” and especially the advice for single travelers [“Singular Journeys” by Jane Engle, Aug. 1]. I always recommend Elderhostel (now Road Scholar) as an excellent way for single women to travel. My assigned roommate on one trip became a long-term travel companion. On Amtrak, riders sit with other travelers to fill up the tables, and this can be very pleasant too. I enjoyed every page; keep up the good work.

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Eleanor Van Natta, Rancho Dominguez

I am 66 and always travel by myself. The Travel section articles on single travel had me warbling for joy. As the stories indicate, the only challenges for solo travel are common sense and courage. Of course, a sense of adventure helps. From China to Cambodia, Thailand to Argentina, where hostels were my choice for lodging, I have expanded my horizons and made many new friends in the process.

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Ruth Kramer Ziony, Los Feliz

I really appreciated the features on solo travel. It’s ironic that I recently received an e-mail from the auto club, with the subject, “Vacations everyone can enjoy.” When I opened it, it began, “Whether traveling as a couple, a family or with friends, AAA has a package that will suit your style.” In this economy, travel companies can no longer afford to exclude or ignore an increasingly significant group of potential customers.

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Ted R. Marcus, Torrance

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In the article about safety [“Safety Tips for Traveling Alone” by Terry Gardner, Aug. 1], Kevin Coffey suggests using your first initial and last name. This is good advice for checking into hotels or renting cars, but remember, the name on your boarding pass must match the name on your government-issued ID.

William Besse, Indio

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Chinese garlic vs. Gilroy’s finest

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Regarding Scott Martelle’s Gilroy story [“Smells Like Gilroy’s the Place to Party,” July 11]: We recently picked up a pack of garlic at Food4Less and when we got home discovered that it was grown in China.

I can’t understand how anything grown on another continent could be cheaper (or fresher or more flavorful) than something grown within a few hundred miles of where it is sold.

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Catherine Cate, Santa Ana

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Travel agents and airline fees

Catharine Hamm does not approve of the many fees airlines are tacking on but does not want legislation to control it, as it will “get more complicated” [“A Fee Onslaught,” On the Spot, July 25]. Does she think the airlines will suddenly develop a conscience?

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Maybe as an interim step we should go back to using travel agents, who will charge but should be aware of and upfront about whatever fees are tacked on.

Tilda De Wolfe, Monterey Park


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