Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Tri Travel to the rescue

There is a saying in Afrikaans, my home language "Slim het sy Baas gevang" For my friends who follow my blog that doesn't understand Afrikaans let me first explain the meaning. If you translate it word for word it will be "Clever catches it's Boss" which doesn't make sense and is not the real meaning of the saying. It translates to something like "(he was) too clever for his own goods" Well coming back to my story, if it wasn't for Tritravel this saying would be spot on.

Some time ago I wrote about the ridiculous fees that Airline companies charge for transporting your bike when you fly. By searching the net I came across Virgin Atlantic who don't charge for sport equipment and Hawaii air who charge $100 from LA to Kona compared to the other airlines $175.

Because we only fly end of September I booked and paid for the flights from Johannesburg to Los Angeles on Virgin, as there aren't many options for this route and the price differs a lot from airline to airline. I decided to hang on to the LA to Kona booking because the price does not differ that much and I was hoping for the Rand/$ exchange rate to drop.

Late last week I decided to do the booking as the $ was at it's weakest against the rand in a while. Everything went 100% with the booking on Hawaii Air until I had to pay for the tickets. Problem number one, they only accept credit cards from the USA, Canada, a few countries close to the US and Australia. Well I thought there goes option number one but lets fly with United Airlines. They were option two when I compared prices. OK they also don't take credit cards from South African citizens. Lets try American Airlines option three, well, guess what no credit card option for SA.

I tried option number four Delta airlines, hey great news they do take South African credit cards, only problem is they are now almost double the price than Hawaii Air. But if you don't have any other choice what can I do.

Before I finalized the payment, I emailed Tiffany at Tritravel in Australia who is the company we are using for our accommodation and tour activities in Kona. Luckily she came to the rescue and booked the exact same flights on Hawaii Air as the ones we looked at and for the same price as the Internet price I got. One thing I can say is that the service I am receiving from Tiffany and Tritravel is excellent. I've been fortunate enough to travel a few times to different countries in Europe and has been to the US a couple of times and the service I am getting from Tritravel is been the best I've ever received from a travel agent.

Nothing is to much to asked for and they get back to me immediately with every question or query I have. Even with us getting to Kona before the official tour starts and leaving after the tour ends, all the transport issues has been taken care of. To Tiffany and www.tritravel.com.au Thank you.

My 20 week training program with www.markallenonline.com has started on Monday and I am slowly getting back into the routine of training twice a day for seven days a week. I am still half asleep at 4am to do my morning session but it won't be long for the body to fall into the routine as it did for Ironman South Africa.

It was a big surprise today to get a phone call from a friend of mine from which I haven't heard in almost a year. We studied together and then started together in the motor industry and worked for the same company for almost fifteen years. It is such a sad story, as he then developed a gambling problem and without anyone suspecting it he stole money from the company. He lost everything and his wife even divorced him. He received a suspended sentence, had to pay back all the money he stole and just finished a rehabilitation program to cure his gambling addiction. He lost everything and are now living with his parents and must start his live over at the age of 38. One can say he brought it upon himself but it is still sad to hear what his been through the past year.

It made me think about me complaining about little things such as motivation and some flu that's not even real issues. I must be so thankful to have such a great life and for everything I've been blessed with.

Today's workout:

Swim: 20 min 1 km( speed drills)

Now some cycling on the Computrainer.

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