Scroll To Top
G.P.S

Nextpedition: Our First Destination Revealed

Nextpedition Box open

Usually the trend of NYC merchants barraging us with holiday tunes the second after Halloween is enough to annoy our inner Scrooge. But today, hot damn, Christmas came early at OutTraveler HQ and we couldn't be more delighted.

The second phase of our Nextpedition mystery trip -- the first, determining our travel sign and getting the elves-cum-sponsors at American Express Travel a plannin' -- commenced on Monday with the arrival of our travel console, a geo-aware Android device that reveals our itinerary bit by bit. It also acts as an internet-enabled Lonely Planet guidebook with things to do/see/eat/drink in our destination(s) and a portal to broadcast photos/videos direct to Facebook for free (calls and such are disabled). Up until now, the trip's just been one big tease. We choose our dates (Thursday to Thursday, November 3-10), agreed to the included terms (flights, transfers, accomodations and custom activities), got a generic packing list (layered clothes, passport, squeeing anticipation), and a "Get Ready" letter, the only clue to our destination being hidden in small type at the bottom: 

Nextpedition Box open

Usually the trend of NYC merchants barraging us with holiday tunes the second after Halloween is enough to annoy our inner Scrooge. But today, hot damn, Christmas came early at OutTraveler HQ and we couldn't be more delighted.

The second phase of our Nextpedition mystery trip -- the first, determining our travel sign and getting the elves-cum-sponsors at American Express Travel a plannin' -- commenced on Monday with the arrival of our travel console, a geo-aware Android device that reveals our itinerary bit by bit. It also acts as an internet-enabled Lonely Planet guidebook with things to do/see/eat/drink in our destination(s) and a portal to broadcast photos/videos direct to Facebook for free (calls and such are disabled). Up until now, the trip's just been one big tease. We choose our dates (Thursday to Thursday, November 3-10), agreed to the included terms (flights, transfers, accomodations and custom activities), got a generic packing list (layered clothes, passport, squeeing anticipation), and a "Get Ready" letter, the only clue to our destination being hidden in small type at the bottom: 

Possible NEXTPEDITION Destinations:
Hawaii, Vancouver, Juneau, San Francisco, New Orleans, Las Vegas, Montreal, New York City, Key West, Cabo San Lucas, The Appalachian Trail, Venice, Accra, Budapest, Florence, Munich, Anchorage, Vail, Jamaica, Tahoe, Savannah, Nashville, Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo, Turks and Caicos, Los Angeles, Washington D.C., Miami, The Bahamas, Austin, Palm Springs, Charleston, Baja, Cheyenne, The Grand Canyon, Santa Fe, Whistler British Columbia, Cape Canaveral, Chicago, Madrid, Krakow, Rome, Trondheim, Kiev, Barcelona, Berlin, Paris, Ljubljana, Vilnius, Porto, Limerick, and/or possibly the lovely town of Minsk. 


Sadists.

But Monday, that all turned Santa with the arrival of our Bon Voyage box, contents packed tight in a a slickly-designed cube. There was the console, a leather wallet filled with tiny sealed envelopes numbered Day 1 through Day 8 (more Hanukkah than Christmas apparently), and stickers featuring our travel sign and inspirational text ("...you hurl yourself into each new adventure with a blood-curdling cry. Where you go, Karmakaze, you play chicken with fate. And never blink"). There was also an Alice in Wonderland-like envelope beckoning us with a bold "Open Me." So I did. Fervently. Typing the results to my traveling companion, Mona, via iChat.

Drum roll, please... Our first stop: BARCELONA. España! Catalonia! Gaudì! Tapas! Spanish men!

Or is it? 

Today my console beeped and revealed my actual flight itinerary and check-in info. Curiously, a new entry popped into the system at 7-8am on Friday as well, saying we'll also be traveling then so please block off the time. Hmmm.... Are we connecting on another flight? What's within an hour of the city? And what was with the question from an agent if I had a valid drivers license? And then there's those little numbered envelopes, "passports to the unknown" (as the lit calls them), taunting with possibility. Mona tells me to peek. "We'll send you the details 24 hours before you depart," the console counters. Is this is a new form of traveling? Tantric Jetsetting? 

I hate how much I'm loving this.








Advocate Channel - The Pride StoreOut / Advocate Magazine - Jonathan Groff and Wayne Brady

From our Sponsors

Most Popular

Latest Stories

Justin Ocean