Site Update: January-February 2009


This site update comes to you live from Tokyo’s Narita airport, where I’m on my way home from two weeks in Asia. At the moment I’m in between Hong Kong and LAX, and just 18 hours away from getting back to Seattle.

I’d like to begin this update with a big shout-out to the American Airlines crew who have been holding on to my Nintendo DS since I last came through here. Free travel tip: no matter how experienced you are, be sure to check your seat carefully when you get off the plane!


Each month I look back at what’s happened with in the previous month. If you’ve missed some articles, you can catch up here.


LIFE – I wrote about Loneliness and The New Year with the New Chance.

WORK – I wrote about How to Be Awesome and the Site Redesign.

TRAVEL – I wrote about the Frequent Flyer Challenge (more about this below), How to Get a Duplicate U.S. Passport, Rerouting Travel Plans, Bangkok Adventures, Holiday in Cambodia.


I made it to three new countries: Cambodia, Laos, and Bangladesh. In between I spent time in Bangkok, a city I haven’t been to since 2002; Hong Kong, my usual Asian transit hub; and numerous airports along the way (NRT, SIN, PNH, etc.).

I had originally planned to go to East Africa for this trip, but I switched regions after a visa situation with the Eritrean embassy failed to resolve itself. Traveling to Southeast Asia was much less stressful than I expected the trip to Africa to be, so I’m really glad I made the choice to change things up.

The Site Redesign

As you can see if you read directly from the site, we now have a new Art of Nonconformity design. I’m glad so many of you love it. I do too! My thanks, again, to Reese for doing such a great job. Follow her on Twitter if you don’t already do so.

The Frequent Flyer Challenge

I kicked off the 5 Million Frequent Flyer Challenge with the story of how I earned more than 300,000 Frequent Flyer Miles in late 2008 thanks to creative credit card applications.

Some people are reading the updates to learn how to do the same thing, others are reading for the entertainment value, and others have enjoyed writing in to tell me how stupid I am for applying for so many credit cards. My response is that I promise to carefully consider that feedback while flying around the world for free.

So far we are well above 700,000 new miles that have been earned by AONC readers. This represents at least $14,200 (probably more) in free flights earned through the challenge after just a couple of weeks.

Here are the links to stay updated:

The Original Post
Update #1
Update #2

What’s Coming Next

Travel – I have another big trip planned that will start off on February 19th. I’m headed first to Washington, D.C., then over to Southern Africa for at least 10 days. From there I’ll come back home via Asia, completing my first Round-the-World trip of the year.

(I’m not actually traveling on a Round-the-World ticket this time, but it is a Round-the-World trip. Long story – you’ll get the details before I head out.)

I’m looking forward to returning to Africa after a long absence from the continent. I should be able to visit several new countries and see some old ones along the way.

Washington, D.C. readers, I look forward to meeting any of you who would like to get together on the evening of Friday the 20th. Please send me a note if you’ll be around. Time and location TBD.

Articles – The articles will continue to be posted on the new schedule of every Monday and Thursday. I’ll also publish a couple of extra things on the weekends, so be sure to check back in on the site as those posts are not always sent by email or RSS.

This month I’ll write about the following topics, among others:

  • Creating a Legacy Project
  • 17 Ways to Travel for Almost Free
  • A Short Note on Bridge Jumping
  • Unconventional Overnight Success

I hope you enjoy my writing, and I always welcome your feedback.

The Next Unconventional Guide

My next information product will focus on advanced travel strategies, including Round-the-World travel and Awards tickets. I’ll detail exactly how I fly almost anywhere for an average of $300 per flight and go into all the details about how you can travel anywhere in the world.

The product was delayed a while, but now it’s almost ready. Really! We’ll be good to go in less than two weeks, and I’ll tell you more about it this Thursday. I think you’re going to like it.

Audience Participation

You can participate in the development of this project in several ways:

Leave a comment at the bottom of any essay. Feel free to add to the discussion at any time, and include a link back to your own site if you have one.

Join my newsletter announcement list or add me to your RSS reader.

Follow my real-time updates on Twitter.

Send other feedback. Use my contact form here to tell me what you think so far.

Tell your friends, or tell the world by submitting my essays to StumbleUpon or other social networking sites.

I appreciate the time you spend here. Don’t forget to change the world the way you think it needs to be changed.


Catch up on Previous Updates Here:

November-December 2008 (Seattle)
October 2008 (Seattle)
September 2008 (Seattle)
August 2008 (Seattle)
July 2008 (Karachi)
June 2008 (Amsterdam)
May 2008 (Vancouver)
April 2008 (Syria)
March 2008 (Los Angeles)
February 2008 (Seattle)


Narita Airport Image by Hyou

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  • Jen says:

    Informative and enjoyable as always! Looking forward “17 Ways to Travel for Almost Free” – this sounds like it could interest me!! xx

  • Kate says:

    Sooner said than done! I just left my brand-new coat in my seat in the Air India plane in route from Delhi to Hong Kong while suffering massive stomach cramps from sampling too many South Indian sauces.

    Can’t wait to read the articles!

  • sua mui an toan says:

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    Vậy nâng mũi bằng sụn tự thân vì sao lại
    thân thiện với cơ thể?
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    Cũng vì vậy nên sụn sẽ thích ứng cao với cơ thể,
    dễ dàng tạo thành một khối thống nhất, và có độ
    bền tối đa.
    Kết quả là bạn sẽ có chiếc mũi đẹp từ mọi góc nhìn.

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