Update: It's that time again! Travel is on the mind, and the body may go along too, begrudgingly. Current Thanksgiving related airfare currently clocks in at the $600 range.
Though the tri-state area seems like it has it all- the top entertainment, food, beaches, mountains (small ones), vibrant cities and bucolic farms, one thing it doesn't have is lots of cheery people from about January through March. And that probably has something to do with all the cold, dark damp days, slushy black snow and traffic.
Believe it or not, even the most hardened souls and snow freaks need a break from this eventually. Sure you can flee to the Caribbean or even just south Florida. But those places are far away, and mean a lot of airport and rental car hassle or so many hours behind the wheel that your butt brings the seat with it when you finally try to peel yourself out of the car. What's the closest place you could get reasonably better weather? I'm talking about someplace drive-able that can fast forward those temperatures to at least April. Sounds pretty good, right? To find enough of a change you'll need to go to the northernmost southern place with enough warmth to heat them bones, which brings us to the area of Charleston SC. Yes, it has beautiful southern charm and palm trees, but this picturesque place on a peninsula by the ocean has what you really need, climate relief. Location is what creates that magic. The coastal setting makes for more moderate winter temperatures that you just won't find further inland. Plus, you get fringe benefits like about 40 more minutes of daylight. At the time of writing, the city is looking at a week averaging almost 62 degrees with temperatures ranging mostly from the 50s-70s. Compare that to an average of 35 and temps from the teens to barely 50 around these greater New York parts. Of course, if you're near a beach you have it easy compared to your cousin in the Catskills, who'll be enjoying those negative lows this week.
The ride isn't exactly a quick trip, clocking in at 11.5 hours without stops, and around $150 in fuel costs depending on your ride, but it's a doable feat for one driver with plenty of the right kinds of power food/energy drinks and copious rest beforehand. With another driver sharing the load, you have a perfectly reasonable day of travel with time for an actual meal outside of the confines of the car. That's a priceless advantage when you're really racking up the miles. Who wouldn't want to grab some real southern BBQ or avoid the typical chains for the local favorite spot?
So what if you just don't want to drive? Sure there's airline travel clocking in at $150 and slightly under 2.5 hours flight time, but once you add up the hours of waiting before and after your departure/arrival, you're looking at closer to 4.5 total. Then there's transportation to and from the airport, which could be another $120 plus, and don't forget those taxis or Ubers once you want to get around there. If you don't mind smaller airplanes, you could hitch a ride and be there in 6 hours in a slower plane. In faster small airplanes, 4.5 or even 3.5 hours is possible. This makes it the best and most convenient travel option overall, but unless you have a wealthy friend who just can't wait to buy a bunch of fuel and shell out for operating costs all for the sheer joy of your company, you'd be looking at a charter in the realm of at least $4000, which gets practically reasonable if you're bringing friends. Then you'd also have to add in that ground transportation once again. If you happen to have or share your own jet, you're probably not even reading this, and you might as well go to the Caribbean. It's worth the extra hour and you can afford the operating costs, landing fees and champagne anyway.
If you prefer to rough it, but aren't the camping type, a Greyhound will get you there in a mere 19.5 hours and two transfers for about $139.
Does flying still seem dangerous to you even though the Wright Brothers figured it out over 100 years ago? It's closer to 20 hours by the romantic clickety clack of the rails. And, you get to seek solace in the fact that we have the best rail system of any third world country. But, at least there's no road mileage or grimy rest stops and if NJTransit, Metro North and LIRR are any indication, train sleep is always good sleep.
I won't cover boating because there are no reasonable options, unless you have about 30 hours and you're willing to buy lots of gas. It's the same for horseback minus the gas, plus the water stops and feed, because they're about the same speed. But if you have about a week, you can cruise there, and to a bunch of other places too, for about $500.
At Tailwind, we usually stick to road travel, so I'm a bit biased. Therefore, I'd recommend driving there, and I know you can do it too. Otherwise, you'd be missing out on key local flavor (aka BBQ and coffee spots). The Charleston area of South Carolina is the closest place you can reasonably drive to for a bona fide taste of Spring temps. Unfortunately we don't get to pick our destinations, but you do, and Charleston sounds pretty good right about now.
After you've spent enough years on the road, you slowly begin to hone in on the right road diet. Or if like me, you're stubborn enough, you eventually stop eating things that screw up your day in one way or another. Also, having plenty of time to listen to the likes of Tim Ferriss and Joe Rogan certainly helps. All that bleeding edge info about meats, fats and sugars starts to finally penetrate even the thickest of skulls, and the blood sugar energy-crash roller coaster begins to give way to dense slow burn energy.
Here's what works for me: skip the breads and sugary drinks at all costs. Desserts will precipitate an energy rush followed by the desire to hibernate (not a roadworthy aspiration). Pizza is a tempting but dangerous proposition. Coffee is both friend and foe. Redbull is best used in emergency situations, like the second to last leg of that trip back from Indiana, when Pittsburgh flies by but the endless miles of the same farms render the minutes into slow motion sludge. Even if you're not on some form of keto, paleo or The Eskimo Diet, the best energy is delivered the old fashioned way, via MEAT, especially when tasty things like spices and cranberries are incorporated.
The holidays are over :( so throw out those stale cookies! To seriously level up your snack game whether you're on the road or not, these are what you need. If you're a total jerky noob, this sample pack will prime your palate before digging in deep.
Just Another Day At The Office...
Sometimes the pleasantly unexpected has a way of catching you off guard in the best of ways, like a bite of pie that zings your tastebuds with about a thousand times more delicious flavor than you expected. A funny thing happens the first time a customer tells you that you saved their life, or day, or week- you may not really believe it. Have you ever experienced that? Part of it has more than a little to do with how normal it feels. You're just doing your job. That long distance drive or 600 mile charter flight, or 3 AM dispatch time just seems like another exciting yet relatively normal day in the business. But to you, the customer, it's much more than that. It's about knowing you can rely on someone to be the priceless key component in a chain of events. And this is where I vow to always be the strong link. Because being that vital link is being your life, day, or week saver, and I wouldn't have it any other way.
Some think of travel as a means to an end, but to us, it's an art. No, we can't compare our impeccable cargo skills to a Cezzane but it's our art nonetheless. To some people it's traffic, long queues and plenty of aggravation, but we see the beauty in it. We're the type of people that achieve a zen state through forward motion. It's all about the journey- looking out over the horizon and getting there, wherever it happens to be right now. The hum of the road, usually not the road less traveled, but best traveled. Our other satisfaction comes through making things happen, big and small, to get things where they need to go, safely, securely and quickly.
Sure, we can do run of the mill, but we love to rise to a challenge. Larger items, deadlines, airports, country roads and city streets- they're all in our wheelhouse. Maybe you don't get that magnetic draw of the road, or the sky, but we don't ever expect that sort of dedication to the act itself. We are the challenge seekers, the drivers, handlers and pilots who can't resist the call of that special place, the horizon. After your shipment makes it to its destination, our journey continues and we wouldn't have it any other way.
There Is A Cure For Those Summertime Blues
Summer is a time that can be notoriously slow on business. People are away, the heat slows down our thinking to a pace that the strongest Starbucks espresso can't fix, and mentally we're at the beach. And so things tend to slip. Dates, deadlines, and even those self improvement plans get put on hold because lounging by the pool or basking in the sweet air conditioning can be a much more satisfying alternative. However, there are things you can do to ease the pain, like running a summer special, automating, and staying in touch with your customers, which are a few of the tips suggested by Ali J. Taylor in his 7 Tips to Overcome the Summer Business Slow Down which can help you pick up the slack when you lost your grip.
But sometimes you just need a hand. That's where we come in. Left that laptop somewhere? Need that project or display delivered door to door as fast as possible? Or maybe it's a pallet of materials or merchandise that need to be there now. With our same day delivery service, you can trust it will be there as quickly as possible.
So breathe a sigh of relief. It will all be okay. We're here to help.