Travel Blog

Tesla Roadster

May 10th, 2013 ernie Posted in Travelling by Vehicle No Comments »

Tesla RoadsterTesla Roadster seen in Palm Springs , owned by a Canadian who plans to drive it back to Vancouver. It requires a charge every 245 miles and does 0 to 60 in 3.7 seconds! This is one of the hottest most talked about cars available and Tesla stock is also skyrocketing. I was able to see this car and talk to the owner. Who needless to say was very proud of his car. It is a very hot looking car. This car has all of the luxuries and form fit that you would expect of a car costing $245,000!

Tesla Roadster – Charging

The owner admitted that it is a great car for commuting every day and has more than enough battery power to handle almost all commuting needs. He has some concern about driving it to Vancouver from California and is planning his trip around recharging stations and locations where he can plug-in and top up his batteries.

More and more charging stations are being added every month so this problem will gradually be eliminated. In addition instead of sitting around for a couple of hours while the battery is charged, there is another solution. Tesla batteries can be swapped out in a matter of minutes. You can be on your way in much the same time as it would take to fill up a normal car with gas.

We sincerely hope that this is the way of the future and that these cars eventually come in a cheaper version that the average consumer can afford.


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Tipping Valet Parking

May 7th, 2013 ernie Posted in Travelling by Vehicle No Comments »

Tipping Valet Parking

Tipping Valet Parking attendants has always been problematic for me from the perspective of how much to charge and whether I should even use them. We have had some less than satisfactory service over the years and now unless I have no choice I refuse to give my car up to the valet attendant.  We will discuss some of these issues in a moment, but back to the main topic, tipping valet parking attendants and how much you should give them. I have been typically tipping $5 each time I use valet parking. Some people may offer more and the attendants will certainly take it. But why should you tip these guys at all and will you get good service.

Some people feel that you should tip up front to make sure that you get good service and they take care of your car when they park your car. Others feel that since they pool the tips you are better off to tip when the car comes back in one piece and they open the doors and help you with your suitcases. Still other groups feel that since they are on a minimum wage and make all of their income from tips that you should feel sorry for them and tip them more than you might otherwise.

Tipping Valet Parking – Poor Service

I have had valet parking attendants roar up to the drop off point gunning the engine and while helping with the bags having their hands out for the tip. It is almost as if they don’t want to give you your keys back until they get their tip. Now I have never had any obvious damage done to my car and it is usually delivered in a reasonable amount of time. But I am totally turned off when they drive my car too fast in an almost out of control situation. Take care of my car and treat it with respect!

Based on this sort of activity I am very reluctant to ever give up my car to an attendant. I have an average car, but it is my car and I bought and paid for it. I do not want anyone to damage it. Can you imagine what they would do if it was a hot expensive car. Some of these guys would take it for a joy ride for sure.

The other thing that bugs me is taking a really long time to deliver my car. Sure it depends on how busy they are, but I could have probably gone and got it myself in less time that what some of these guys can get it for. I also want the parking lot to be covered and my car protected from the elements. It should be secure and regular security patrols should be in place. One time my car was parked in an open parking lot along with everyone else’s cars. What am I paying for? I can do that myself for free and I will get some exercise walking into the hotel.


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Getting Your Vehicle Ready for Summer Vacation

June 7th, 2011 ernie Posted in Travelling by Vehicle 1 Comment »

It is that time of year when families are planing their summer vacation. Many people are considering short trips with their cars to a camping site or perhaps to one of the theme parks across the country. Getting your vehicle ready for summer vacation is one of the things you need to consider before going on that driving trip. With gas prices high in the spring, and going higher just in time for summer vacation, many people are considering just how far they will go.

Regardless of whether you are planning a long trip by car or just a short one to see the family or visit a campsite, it is always a good idea to have your car checked before you go. If you already hear some noise that does not sound normal, get it checked out before you leave. No one wants a break down on the highway with a load of luggage and the family.

Getting Your Vehicle Ready for Summer Vacation

In addition the obvious, the following items are worthwhile having your mechanic look at to ensure that you will have no problems while traveling:

  • Oil Change
  • Check anti freeze
  • Check transmission oil level
  • Check brake fluid level
  • Check power steering fluid level
  • Check windshield washer fluid level
  • Check your tires for inflation and unusual wear
  • Check that all of your lights are operating properly

Getting Your Vehicle Ready for Summer Vacation

Check for Low Fluids

Low fluids can cause problems that range from irritation to serious issues with your car. Always have these checked on a regular basis, and especially when you are about to go on a long trip.

Look for uneven Tire Wear

Improper tire wear is an indication that your cars alignment may be out or your tires need to be balanced. Failure to deal with this issue will cause your tires to wear out quickly and also may even cause an uncomfortable ride due to the vibration.

Check Tire Pressure

Tire pressure is also important. Better gas mileage and safer driving are the main benefits of making sure that your tires are properly inflated.

Check the Lights

Check all of the lights as well including brake lights and turning lights. A faulty light may cause you to be in an unsafe situation if someone does not see your car at night or fails to see that you are turning or stopping due to a light not working. Some police forces will also stop you for lights that are not working properly. Usually they just give you a warning and not a ticket.

Get an Oil Change

New clean oil will not only make sure that your engine runs more smoothly, it will also deliver better gas mileage and emit less pollution. My car once failed an emission test much to be disappointment. The attendant suggested that I get the oil changed and that I make sure that I had clean fuel in the engine. I followed his suggestions and my car passed with flying colors next time it was tested for emissions.

If you are going on a long trip, always make sure you have fresh oil in the engine to generate better gas mileage and less pollution! For more tips about travelling by vehicle, click here.

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