The Boarding Door Is Now Closed…

I woke up a few weeks ago and I had a slight feeling of dread about writing something for OTR that day. This site, as I’ve written before, is a labor of love. I’ve been writing it for 10 years, and I love the little community it’s created and the interaction with the readers. But when I woke up a few weeks ago, writing felt like a job.

This happened a few years back when the whole credit card thing exploded, and the site started to generate a little revenue and I felt like I constantly had to feed the beast. I enjoyed the revenue, but I hated the feeling that this thing was work. I pulled back from the credit card stuff, and I started writing less frequently as a way to start enjoying this again.

As my girls have grown older I’ve been trying to spend more time with them in the mornings. And they stay up later so I spend time with them in the evenings. And after they go to bed I actually like to talk to my wife for a bit. And at my job I have my job stuff to do. Which is all to say – the time I used to spend thinking about the site and actually writing has now been filled with family time. And I’m incredibly happy about that.

Which is all to say that it’s time to turn out the lights at the OTR. I have the email addresses of those of you who have signed up for the newsletter, so if I decide to write from time-to-time I’ll let you know (and please – sign up for the newsletter…I may write on occasion and I’d like to have someone to send it to). But for now, we’ll be closing up shop.

You can always email me at jared (at) And I’ll Tweet once in a while. Or maybe more than that. Follow me on Twitter! (Link is to the right).

I’m on Instagram at jblankoh.

Don’t delete the feed – if I decide twice a year that I have something to say, you’ll get it.

I’ve left a list of my favorite pieces of in the right-hand column so if you ever want to revisit the subway trip report or whatever, it’s there.

And I’ll leave with these last few thoughts:

– Don’t be an idiot about credit card churning. Stay within your limits.
– Don’t be afraid to fly coach and save your miles so you can take more trips.
– That business class seat is just a shitty version of your couch.
– Go and travel. And take your kids with you. I know this whole thing sometimes feels like it’s about the points. It’s not. It’s about traveling.

Thanks for reading.


  1. You have done a great job Jared and you will be dearly missed. Please add me to your mailing list. You always have witty/humorous posts. Take care! PS, any chance of seeing you at any of the upcoming travel conferences?

  2. Sorry to see you go. Your witty take on travel will be missed.

  3. Sorry I will not be reading your column anymore. It was always interesting/entertaining/educational. BTW, what is your association with the Hartford Whalers?

  4. Goodbye! It’s been fun. You’ve always had a different voice than the rest of the travel bloggers and I’ll miss reading it.

    Good luck.

  5. Sorry to hear that, but love the reasons it is for. Very much agree this whole crazy thing is about travel, and best of all is when that travel is with your family. Points are just the vehicle for making it happen.

    Enjoy your evenings. Your mornings. Your weekends. Your travels. Your family. Look forward to continuing to follow the pieces of your journey your are willing to share on Twitter.


    • Thanks, Summer – I feel like there are only a few of us who write a blog like this AND somehow manage to have a family…it’s a lot. Glad you’re making it work. See you on Twitter :)

      • We know the interesting balance of it all for sure – doing it as long as you did on top of a full time job is most impressive. If you ever have some family travel tales to tell but aren’t ready to fire up your own site again, would love to help you share them.

  6. Real sad to see you go, this blog was more original than all the others in this hobby put together.
    Go lay on your couch and get your kids to serve you champagne.

  7. Thanks so much for the work you put into this! Yours is the only blog like this I’ve followed, because of the sane and helpful tone (um.. any recommendations for a replacement blog to follow?).

    I’ve benefited from your posts and appreciate the time you spent. Enjoy the freed-up mental space!

  8. At least one blogger has his priorities straight! You will be missed and we will welcome you back anytime.

  9. Jared, there isn’t much that I can say that hasn’t been said already. You and your voice will be sorely missed. I so appreciate all I have learned from you. Thank you! There are only so many hours in the day, and you are using yours well. Best of luck.

  10. Sorry to see one of the “good guys” leave, but you definitely have your priorities straight. Time, especially personal time, is ultimately the most valuable currency, because you can never get it back.

  11. Thank you. You were my second read of the day. Rick is number one. I appreciated your being able to laugh at yourself.

  12. Jared, I will really miss your posts but I respect your choice. You always had a witty, humorous and insightful view different from the others. Best of luck to you and I hope you will write something occasionally to send us. Best wishes and keep traveling!

  13. You have done such a great job. You have fantastic dry and witty humor with your writing, and stayed with you because of that. While I am sad to see you go, I am happy to experience the magic as well as delighted you have chosen a path that is best for you at this stage. When the time comes, please don’t underestimate the possibility of succeeding Dave Barry. Best of luck… Lee

    • Lee – that is too kind. Thank you….I hope to still post something on occasion….sign up for the emails :)

  14. Rapid Travel Chai

    Parting words to frame and hang on the wall right over my over-used computer.

  15. I’ll miss your posts. Even though they were infrequent, you were on my daily list to check because they were generally good entertainment + high value.

    I started a blog a year and a half ago…I lasted about 3 months. It sounds really easy but isn’t.

    thanks for all!


  16. Couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy…

    I, too, will miss your sense of humor (severely lacking from the other sites I’ve seen) and your perspective. Especially with something you’ve put lots of work into, I admire your decisive action to walk away now and save yourself months of agonizing. It’s refreshing, and a good reminder of how easy that can be.

    You and your posts are always welcome back in my email.

  17. Going to miss the wit and humor. Looked forward to your posts and hope to be reading you again someday.

  18. Just like the others said, sorry to see you go, Jared. Hope to see your posts in my Feedly every now and then.

  19. Good luck Jared! I’ll miss your blog but keep you in my feed in case you come back. I totally agree with your last 4 points (except I don’t have kids so can’t comment on that one) but basically the points are a means to an end – the trip!

  20. Sorry to hear you wont be posting much anymore. I always found your blog interesting to read with very useful information in it. I am happy for you and your family though and wish you all the best.

  21. So long and thanks for all the fish.

  22. You had a unique voice and I am going to miss it. Enjoy time with your family!

  23. Damn,this is painful.

  24. Thanks Jared. I always liked your common sense approach to this hobby. Enjoy the time with your family – as always, you’ve got your priorities right.

  25. I’ll miss you, but more importantly, I’m proud of you. Kudos and best wishes. Janet

  26. Your perfect combination of information and snark will be missed. Sorry to see you go.

  27. Well, that’s the worst news of the day. Love reading your stuff every day – favorite blog by far.

    Hope you enjoy taking a break and you come back soon!

  28. Our loss, your gain. Well thought out on your part. In the markets knowing when to sell is arguably harder than knowing when to buy, but I think you nailed it here.

    I still refer people to your 103rd St. trip report for a laugh. Would be thrilled if you throw us one or two things like that a year.

  29. I am really sad about this. It was so refreshing reading a true contrarian, who just wrote about travel because he loved it and didn’t give a shit what others were saying/posting/pimping. I will look forward to whenever you post in the future; enjoy your additional family time!

  30. Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh….C ya!

  31. Best wishes. Enjoyed your blog a lot.

  32. Million Mile Secrets

    Say it isn’t so. Because I really looked forward to your posts!

    Never before has a miles and points blogger consistently contributed so much wit, wisdom & industry analysis in such few words.

    PS: Will you reconsider once the girls are in college?

  33. Loved your writings: will be missed

  34. Every once in awhile, America gets too much of a good thing. Craft beer comes to mind. And, with the advent of affiliate links, frequent flyer blogs were certainly added to the list. But your blog was always a breath of fresh air. We’ll miss the humor and insight. Stay in touch!

  35. Very sad to hear this, Jared, as your blog was one of the most insightful and intelligent. Seriously, though, you DO have your priorities right – and for that, you rock.

  36. A job well done and I will miss your posts! Best of luck to you and the family and hope you get a chance from time to time to write something inspiring which you always did. Your humor and tongue in cheek comments were always the best!

  37. Boo.

    Though I totally understand. I’ve gone months? years? without posting to for the same reason. Haven’t shuttered it yet, but…


  38. Thanks for all of the posts!

  39. You are a selfish sonofabitch, aren’t you? That being said, I will miss your missives on the German testicles of Bernhard Langer, as well as your commentary on late summer weather in Rangoon…