Tour Owner’s Response to Bad TripAdvisor Review Recorded, Set to Music

It’s a story almost as old as the Grand Tour of Europe itself: traveler takes tour in Italy, traveler gives it a poor review on TripAdvisor, guide allegedly calls traveler to complain about the review, traveler records phone call, call gets set to music and posted on YouTube where its language makes it NSFW (at least without earphones)..From YouTube:

A tourist gave a bad review on TripAdvisor for a very boring tour (he had 8 other tours with 4-5 stars in his profile – but this one was just bad). After the tour guide read it, he flipped out and called the tourist & decided to go into a tirade, despite being told he was being recorded. When I heard the story (from the tourist), I was shocked & offered to make this video of his story (I am better at MovieMaker). The tour guide’s name may not be able to be posted without his permission due to Italian privacy laws (TBD). But anyway, enjoy & be careful on review sites!

Will Instagram’s New Embed Function Change Travel Blogging?

Instagram just announced users now have the ability to embed photos and videos, a move that has the potential to change the face of travel blogging. Now, even novices will be able to bypass fancy editing software and the hassle of YouTube or Vimeo uploads. Short clips can be composed, edited, uploaded and pasted to websites in a matter of minutes — while simultaneously being shared across Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. Seriously, it’s a shameless self-promoting traveler blogger’s dream come true.

Watch what a potential Instagram travel vlog (that’s a video blog, in case you didn’t know) could look like above, where McLean Robbins shows off a ghost town in Jerome, Arizona.

Of course, the downside is it’s highly likely there will be a lot more “cheating” by posting filtered photos online. And there will probably be more cliché photos — toes in a sandy beach, latte art, etc. — popping up on blogs. You win some, you lose some.

And by the way, follow us on Instagram for a constant feed of travel inspiration (how’s that for a shameless plug?).

Man Travels U.S. Handing Out $500 Tips

In his will, Aaron Collins had a simple wish: to have his family leave “an awesome tip” for an unsuspecting server. “I’m not talking about 25%. I mean $500 for a [expletive deleted] pizza,” Collins wrote, according to his brother, Seth. Shortly after Aaron died, his family surprised a server in Lexington with just that. Seth posted a recording of the server’s reaction (above) to YouTube, and the heartwarming video quickly went viral.

People were so touched by Aaron’s request that the family soon found themselves with nearly $60,000 in donations. Seth knew he had to spread his brother’s wish further, and decided to travel to all 50 states so people across the nation could feel the effects of these random acts of kindness. Watch the first server to get a $500 tip above (the excitement starts at the minute mark), or visit Aaron’s Last Wish to see more lucky servers at the receiving end of this family’s generosity. It might just be the most heartwarming road trip ever imagined.

[via Gawker]

YouTube Video Of Owl-Kicking Paraglider Prompts Investigation

You’d think someone whose sport of choice is flying through the air would have respect for birds, but one paramotorist is catching heat after a video of him chasing and kicking an owl mid-air was uploaded to YouTube.

The man in the video doggedly pursued a Barn Owl in flight for more than seven minutes, kicking it several times as it flew over the landscape near Utah Lake. He then proceeded to brag about it, yelling, “I kicked an owl butt” in a taunting voice and asking, “Who’s the predator now?”

But federal and state wildlife officials aren’t smiling: since migratory birds are protected under federal law, officials are currently determining if the video warrants prosecution. They have a hunch the man in the video is Dell “Superdell” Schanze, a paramotorist who was arrested in 2011 after posting a video that showed him taking off from a historic monument in Oregon. I guess some people just never learn.

“I’ve gotten to know many pilots in the paragliding and powered paragliding community and I’ve found them to be some of the most considerate and conscientious fliers in aviation,” says our resident commercial and paragliding pilot, as well as “Cockpit Chronicles” columnist, Kent Wien. “But there’s always one, and I suppose every community has their own Dell ‘Superdell’ Shanze.”

The YouTube video has since been removed, but more than 50,000 people caught it during the four days it was online. Segments of it can be found in news reports online and on Facebook.

F-18 Fighter Pilot Takes Dreamliner For A Spin [VIDEO]

Piloted by an F-18 fighter pilot, we see just what the Boeing Dreamliner can do when put to the test. Stretching the aircraft and pushing it to the limit of its ability, the pilot guides the 787 to climb and soar at a degree and rate that passengers (hopefully) will never experience.

Boeing has been working to get the 787 Dreamliner back in the sky after two battery-fire incidents in January forced the FAA to ground all 50 of the 787 models operated by commercial carriers worldwide.

Battery testing complete, it is now up to the FAA to say when the aircraft can be retrofitted and returned to service. In addition to the 50 grounded planes, 20 more sit on Paine field in Seattle, waiting for delivery.

Uploaded to YouTube by user Wonkabar007, the video was apparently filmed at the Farnborough International Air Show in the UK last July.