Thursday, February 9, 2017

Kosher traveler trip to Thailand -Notes

 Kosher food in Thailand is easier then you may think, since there is a huge amount of Israeli backpackers, there are 4 big Chabad houses the main in Bangkok is catered almost entirely for backpackers. other Chabad houses around Bangkok are mostly for local Israeli families who live around Bangkok.                    

 1. Chabad of Bangkok: (its in the kaho san area on rambutry st, right next to kaho san rd,  all the taxi driver's will know where it is juts tell them kaho san rd, when you get there you will see a big sign for Chabad or ask one of the many Israeli backpackers.

Chabad helping the backpackers on their journey. 

Kosher: There is a number of Israeli tourist agencies and restaurants in the area but unfortunately the only kosher food is in Chabad.


Most taxi rides between the major areas in Bangkok are based on meter reading, if it's not it's expected to be around 200 THB.
From the airport you could either take a taxi approximately between  500B-700B to Kaho san rd.
 Taxi's  are waiting on the 1st floor at arrives, which is one floor underneath where you will be coming out from costumes, or by the and of the hall at your left hand side facing the doors there is a shared minivan to Kaho san  for around 100B-150B,  look for the sign Kaho san rd.

 But if you know your way around Bangkok you can take the airport rail link to the last stop and change over to the BTS (Bangkok Mass Transit System), or arrive at the Asok station and take the MRT (Metropolitan Rapid Transit)  and then connect to the BTS.

You will need to take the BTS till  Saphan Taksin (by Siam station you will need to change BTS to Saphan Taksin just go out of the train and wait for the train at the opposite side).
By Saphan Taksin take the boat to Kaho San which is pier number 13, the pier are not so clearly marked, specially if you are shy to ask around.
The one thet will mostly come in hendy is the one in the sukumvit area wich is on soi 22 between the bts asok staition and the phrom pung station, on soi 22 walk down about 10 minuts untill the street is starting to turn left, there is a street on your right hend side make a right after a minute of walk the first street to your left make a left there you will see it, bait alisheva                                              
[8:58 AM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: If you are looking for a more haimishe shabas with about 30 40 jewish familys this chabad house is more suitable for you, the chabad house by kaho san rd is really full with a few honderd backpers evrey shabas                      
[9:00 AM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: 2: chiang mai
3: phuket
4: koh samui                      
[9:15 AM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: Other then the chabad chabad house there a kosher resturant aaida cousin
(Somkid Place, Soi Somkid, Ploenchit Rd., Lumpini,, Lumphini, Pathum Wan, Bangkok 10330, Thailand) in Bangkok in the chit lom area close to the siam shopping mall,
To get there take the bts to chit lom ( take the exit to your right hend side when your facing the siam area)
when you come out of the station walk a minute and take a left on to chit lom alley walk 5 minuts until right before the road goas over the small river, on your right hend side there is a street there you will see a sighn for aaida cousin,
This resturant is a morrocen style resturant, meet is from chabad (although this may change), thay have a mashgiach tmidy in the resturant, this resturant is quite expensive comperd to chabad wich is really cheap                      
[9:18 AM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: Shabas is also provided in this resturant for free, I am not sure about reservation                      
[9:25 AM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: In pattaya (2 hour from bangkok with a bus) there is a kosher hotel CENTRA,
The hotel hes a kosher resyurant synagogue with shacris mincha mariv all days of the week, shabas saidas is for free no reservations needed, there is about 200 people avrey shabas by the saida,
The meat is from chabad (although this may change)
Thay have a mashgiach tmidy living in the hotel,
The hotel resturant during the week is open from 11:00am to 10:00pm, the prices are good depending on what you order ask them for the thai food menu you will get more and its cheap                      
[9:33 AM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: The hotel is located on soi 13 between second rd and soi buakhao,
 its called by locels soi dayana ( locels call the street by names although it hes numbers since the numbers are changing depending between wich street for example soi 13 between soi buakhao and second rd is about a quarter mile away from soi 13 between sacond rd and walking st)                      
[9:39 AM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: To get there fron the bus station arriving fron bangkok you can either take a motorcycle for 70b 80b
or take one of the many pickup truckes waiting to get filled up 50b per person,
Jost remember tell them soi dayana not jost soi 13 yoh may end up in a totel different area, on soi dayana in the middle of the St more close to soi buakhao you will see a blue colored sighn centra on your left hend side coming from soi buakhao                      
[9:40 AM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: Make a left and wala your there                      
[10:08 AM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: Its important to note pattaya is not for an chasidishe jew or for any jew for thet metter, but if you do find yourself in the area lets say coming from cambodia the info about kosher food may come in hendy                      
[10:08 AM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: There is another kosher restaurant in the island koh pha ngan this island is loved by isrealy backepacers and its full of isrealis,
The kosher resturant HABAIT is located in the had rin beach,
meat is from chabad,
Mashgiach tmidy,
Shabas saudas is for free no reservations needed,
I havent been there for a long time so the info may not be up to date                      
[10:08 AM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: How to get there from the boat arriving in koh pha ngan take a picup truck to the had rin beach, right when you arrive in the hadrin area you will see sighns for the habait hayisrealy, or ask one of the many isreal pepole you will see, by the time I was there thay were in the middle of fixing up a kosher hotel upstairs from the resturant.
There is a synagogue over there to                      
[10:08 AM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: There is a lot other isreal resturants in koh pha ngan but unfortunately its not kosher                                                                                              
[2:11 PM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: Hi guys we are now on our way to Myanmar (burma) we are stuck and will need to change buses,
this is a first class bus,
Even though Thailand is not a third world contry some may consider it a first world contry aspacly by the first look, buses breack down are very common                                              
[2:12 PM, 2/6/2017] +1 (845) 659-7336: Keep us posted!                      
[2:25 PM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: We toke this bus from mo chit station in bangkok to mae sot, its shold be a 6 hours ride,
Living bangkok 9:00 pm cost is 373b,
There is a cheaper option sacond class living 10:00pm for 290b,
The first class hes a restroom on the bus (wich is not always good since the bus dont need to make a smoke stop:))                      
[2:25 PM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: This is my sacond time beeing stuck with buses in Thailand and I mostly use the train so the procentege is high😀                      
[2:57 PM, 2/6/2017] +1 (845) 659-7336: which site do you use to book buses/trains in Asia?                      
[3:25 PM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: You dont need to book in advence online you can mostly book anything and avreything at the station a few hours before departure, in peek season if you are afraid youll n9t get a seat aspaculy if you want a sleeper you can book it by one of the many locel agency or go down to the station as early as possible,
Or if you want to do it online look for the officel site if thay have a booking option,
If not like in myannmar where we are going now the rail sestam is still not computerized only hand reaten,
There is a reliable online agency                      
[3:27 PM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: There is a site wich is really good info for train travel all over the world
This site will give specific info on each train how its best to book                      
[3:28 PM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: But again in my experience there is no need to book in advence, except if its really important for you  a sleeper in a specific time and date etc                      
[3:29 PM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: I am not talking about china now in china in the busy season you may want to book in advance                      
[4:55 PM, 2/6/2017] +1 (845) 659-7336: How do you ahve data all over?                      
[5:30 PM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: Update : We are now starting to move again after being stuck for 4 hours                      
[5:31 PM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: I am using to-mobile plan wich gives me free intrrnet and texting in 140 contrys                      
[5:31 PM, 2/6/2017] +1 (845) 659-7336: @Avrohom Silverman  shae some tids from your BKk trip for כשרות?                      
[5:31 PM, 2/6/2017] +1 (845) 659-7336: You mean T mobile?                      
[5:31 PM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: Yes                      
[5:31 PM, 2/6/2017] +1 (845) 659-7336: 😂                      
[5:32 PM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: Talking is 20 cents a minute                      
[5:33 PM, 2/6/2017] +1 (845) 659-7336: which is also cheap, but I believe google voice/whats app call is free?                      
[5:33 PM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: Yes but then you can only call to a whats aap number I think                      
[5:34 PM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: I am using a app text me wich is quite good for talking and it works with internet                      
[5:36 PM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: Anyway if you are traveling in asia the bast option is to buy a locel sim card wich works well for intetnet and local calling,
Even international calling is not so expensive                      
[5:37 PM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: In Thailand you can go in to any 7-11 and buy a sim card you will need to have a unlocked, GSM phone                      
[5:38 PM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: In the us t mobile and at&t are using GSM phones,
Verizon and sprint are using CDMA                      
[5:38 PM, 2/6/2017] Avrohom Silverman: But u need to go one of the company's shops with ur passport to register it in order to work                      
[5:38 PM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: Most phones thet you buy by verizon itself will be both                      
[5:40 PM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: No you jost need to show your passport in the 7-11 or in any other place where you buy the sim card                      
[5:41 PM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: If you are not sure how to add momey jost ask them to help you out                      
[5:53 PM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: The only place where I needed to fill out a form  was in nepal                      
[5:53 PM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: In Thailand you will get the best service from AIS (one to call)                      
[5:53 PM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: Here is a list of sout east contry where I remember it being really easy to buy a sim card,
Vietnam, Cambodia, laos, Thailand, india, nepal (was a little bit of a hassle), china                      
[5:56 PM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: In central America on the other hand where I have jost traveled in dec, phone service is really not good especially for international calling, and forgat about internet its expensive and crazy slow                      
[5:56 PM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: Over there a tmobile plane is really great                      
[5:56 PM, 2/6/2017] Yitzhak Zev Rubin - Traveler: Now I am on my way to burma I will keep updating about the phone service over there, and about the kashrut of course, lest time I haven't taken a sim card over there

Monday, September 22, 2014

              How Do I Build And Maintain My Credit?

                Answers For Most Common Questions.

I don’t have any cards yet and always get rejected, how can I build up my credit?

Start by having someone add you as an additional user to their account. Be sure that the account has been open for a while, is used responsibly and not maxed out. Make sure that the credit card asks for the social of the authorized user. By doing this, you add that account to your credit files, and it helps build your credit.
After about 3 months you should get a nice boost from that. Start by applying for easier credit cards that don’t require a high credit …or a store card like from Gap, Kohl’s, Macy’s, Target, etc. These can be easier to get approved for.

How do I get and keep a good credit score?

                                  1.Pay your bills on time, every time. Always pay at least your minimum
                                       monthly payment. Don’t skip any payments.
Note: You don’t need to revolve on credit cards to get a good score. Paying off the balance each month helps get you the best score.
2. Don’t max [Don’t use more than a 1/3 of your credit line]
                                 3. Keep track of your spending
The 2 primary factors making up 65% of your score are your payment history and the amount of money you owe. So always make sure to protect those.

Isn't it bad for your score to open a card?

In the short-term your score may go down slightly, but in the longer-run your score will only go up. Because, when you get a new card, you get a new line of credit. 30% of your score is made up of amounts owed and credit utilization so the more credit you have, the better your score.
Once you use that pull and apply for a card be sure you actually get that card!  It can take several tries, but typically calling or writing (via SM or even snail mail) to reconsideration departments can turn a denial into an approval, especially if you are an existing customer.

Isn't it bad for your score to close a card?

The only negative outcome of closing a card is losing the credit line that can be avoided in several ways. Many banks allow you to move a line of credit onto a different card. Some banks may be more willing to approve you for another card contingent on moving part of line of credit from an older card onto a newer card. Or they may want to completely close out the older card and move the entire line onto the newer card.

I don’t make my own income, how can I get a credit card?

 Recently the CFPB ruled that as long as you live in the same household as someone who you can rely upon to provide from their income, you can include all of that household income when reporting your income on a credit application.
Income isn't listed on your credit report, it’s based on what you report.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

My Trip To Vancouver Part # 3

                                Vancouver Trip Report 

In the morning we headed towards whistler..
                         Breathtaking View Looking Down From Whistler Mountains

After crossing the Lions Gate Bridge we stopped at Lynn Canyon Suspension Bridge Lynn Canyon Park  we joined the parks tour but since nobody participated we had a private tour... Giving us a glimpse thorough the history of the bridge and it's many owners. After the tour we hiked around the park. Walking on the suspension bridge was a fun and scary at the same time. As you gather the courage to look down, you see an incredible view. The waterfalls and greenery is gorgeous!  It was especially fun to watch others trying to get through without losing balance.

                                                                   Lynn Canyon Suspension Bridge 

Then we continued to Grouse Mountain....
Grouse Mountain-Skyride taking the skyride up to the mountains... It’s worth trying to have a window seat as you get a breathtaking view of the other side of Vancouver...
                                                      Grouse Mountain Sky-ride

Bear Discovery

 ​[ Grouse Mountain-Bears of the mountains] was nothing major [but the short film about the rescue  history was amazing]
Then we set down to relax while were watching "The Birds in Motion" presentation... Grouse Mountain-Birds in Motion it was interesting but ×¦×• ×©×˜××¨×§ ××•×™×¡×’עצויגן.
 There are also Zip-lining and gliding activities (which we didn't do since we had an infant), but it seemed to be a lot of fun!
Then we hit the road again. And drove along the Sea to Sky highway to whistler BC.

                                               Beautiful Views On Way....

On the way we stopped at Shannon Falls (right off the highway). The third highest waterfall in BC Parks, where water falls from a height of 335 meters. GORGEOUS!
                                          Huge Mountain Near The Falls

Then we checked in Westin whistler Hotel. It is nice and has a big property with lots of amenities. A full kitchen, cozy rooms, nice outdoor/indoor pool with spa. It is in the center of town. And it is a 2 min. walk to the Whistler Gondolas.
Parking was very expensive, but there was no choice since the closest free parking is 20 min walk.
In the morning we did the Gondola. It has spectacular views! [See earlier link] It was quite cold up there, with Snow Mountain tops the view from underneath and the lakes around where AMAZING! We went all the way up to the Peak to Peak Gondola that connects the incredible High Alpine of Whistler and Black-comb Mountains. One of us came down with the open chair lift (since we had an infant someone had to come back with the closed chairlift), It was cool to watch the bikers coming (would say flying) down the mountains...
                                       Breathtaking View From Gondola Chairlift

After a full day in Whistler We headed back to Vancouver for our flight home, on the way we stopped in the Museum. It was a nice historical and informal museum. We joined the last tour that took us through the mine cave and factory... Giving us a glimpse in the history of that area which is gone for a few decades...

Big truck used for mining (not in this facility.. just parked there as an advertisement).

                                            Inside The Britannia Mine Museum Factory 

 Then we stopped in the central Shul Scharat Tzedeck for Mincha Mariv and walked nearby to Sabra Kosher Restaurant  for a light meal and salads. The service and food was very good!
 (For those who look for a high end restaurant there is a restaurant called Maple Grill ).

Home we flew with Cathy Pacific but this time in business.Even after being spoiled with first class on the way coming, I must say the full lie flat seat in the service in business beats some airlines first class.. 

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

My Trip To Vancouver Part #2

Vancouver Trip Report

Arriving in Vancouver

Touchdown –The airport was beautiful and distinctive, filled with artwork, statues and an enchanting aquarium. «

                                                         Aquarium In The Airport.
However, arriving in Vancouver well after midnight, I was surprised to find that all of the car rental 

companies were closed. FEH!With so many flights arriving and departing at that time, I will say that I found it a bit odd that there were no car rental companies available to assist travelers.

Public transportation also not operating at that time, there was only one option left – taxi cab, which we were happy to find and jump right into. Our cab driver seemed a bit foreign to us … by the way he was looking at us I believe he was thinking the same thing. However, in time, we began to talk and he soon offered a very warming and comfortable personality. Upon arriving at the hotel (the cab ride cost $35), finishing up with a very nice tipto the driver, I’m sure we left him with a great appreciation for the Jewish community.«««

Check-in We checked in at the Fairmont Pacific Rim. You will love this hotel - it was exquisite. From the luxury cars parked outside, to the gorgeous lobby and the breathtaking views seen from most areas of the hotel. Though exhausted, most of our senses were fully alert.«
Upon opening the door to our room we found a letter from the Hotel Manager personally addressed to us and welcoming us to the hotel (nice touch – you’d be impressed).The hotel room was superb, which is an understatement. Modern in style, including a modern crib, toys and diapers awaiting our infant.«After our long trip, stomachs were rumbling in hunger. We had brought kosher food from home, but there was no microwave in the room to heat it – so we called for the hotel staff, who gladly took our double wrapped food and warmed up our meal for us. Wondering what to do with the rest of the food we had brought from home, noticing that the minibar was too small to house all of our kosher foods, we contacted the hotel staff once again –and they graciously brought up a larger sized mini-fridge to keep for the rest of our stay. With our stomachs full, it was off to bed for a very comfortable and cozy good night sleep. For more information on this wonderful hotel please visit their website. Fairmont Pacific Rim                                                                                                               Fairmont Room                                                        Fairmont Pacific Rim Hotel  
Check-in was a breeze. They were awaiting our arrival, greeted us by name, and swiftly showed us to our room.  The hotel porter, as well as the rest of the staff, were very helpful and extremely polite. «
Modern Restroom
Luxury Cars Parked And Washed Front Of Hotel..

Vancouver Trip Report

Vancouver Day 1

In the morning we walked to National car rental. The service was great and the people particularly polite and warm (you’ll find that this is the “norm” for nearly everyone in Vancouver«). Being an Emerald Club Member, we were offered a free upgrade for our rental car (a red convertible). Very cool yes, but while there was enough room for our family, there wasn’t much room for all of our belongings (pack light if you find yourself thrilled to be driving around in a convertible). Seated in our shiny red convertible,feeling as though “the world is mine,” we decided to drive to Stanley Park. We paid for parking then walked to the garden, inhaling the beautiful scent of the various flowers – at which point we decided to head to the aquarium, which was nice, but a bit overpriced. The aquarium didn’t offer more than most any other, including the show, but the one thing we didgenuinely enjoy was the 4D Black Bears Salmon Show … a nice experience on how Brown Bears live in the British Columbia area. A great show yes – but if you’ve been to any out of the ordinary aquariums in the past, you might want to skip this one to avoid disappointment

Continuing with our afternoon, we walked a few miles along the seawall, which was quite pretty, peaceful and very relaxing.

Then we continued onto the 9 O’clock Gun/Cannon. This gun goes off each night at 9 pm, which frightened my wife the first time she heard it (I found her fright a bit cute), though I quickly comforted her in explaining what it was.– Prepare your wives ahead of time–
After much walking, our feet were speaking to us in languages even we didn't understand – though we were sure it meant “OUCH” – so we headed back to the car, put down the roof and drove around the park to enjoy the rest of the beautiful scenery. We stumbled across a lookout point that was undeniably breathtaking and demanded we step out of the car to get a better look. A wise choice, as the sea standing below, with the mountains and cityscape above was a view not to be missed. «There’s too much to see and talk about at this park – so I’ll share this link with you to give you a better idea. – Remember to wear comfortable shoes– Vancouver Stanley Park

Stanley Park, Vancouver, BC, Canada

Stanley Park Vancouver BC Canada
Back to the hotel, now in need of parking, we realized that the hotel parking was $40. For a 4 day trip, I’m sure you’ll find that to be a bit expensive. Street parking was also difficult to find, so we parked at the Convention Center across from the hotel, where parking was only $25 for the night. «Cha-Ching«

On a side note, parking isn’t particularly necessary in Vancouver, as public transportation takes you anywhere you need to go, arriving often –cycling is also another option. The only time you might need a vehicle is when visiting Whistler, which offers a wonderful resort and spa.
Whistler Resort and Spa

Nearing dinner time, yet not quite ready to stop our sightseeing, we walked over to the Convention Center for FlyOver Canada,a 4D experience that’s a “must do” if in the area. This is an individual experience, consisting of 2 rooms (2 separate experiences), so you must go in one at a time and infants are not allowed. The first room was an all of the seasons in Canada experience. It was kind of cool, but nothing major. The second room was an awe-inspiring experience, a virtual flight simulator that brings you right into the entire experience … Flyover Canada. «««FANTABULOUS «««
To quote their site “See Canada like never before at Vancouver's new must-see attraction! At its core, FlyOver Canada is a breathtaking, all-ages, flight simulation ride like no other! You will take off into a huge dome screen with the latest in projection and ride technology creating a true flying experience (complete with wind, scents, and mist!). At FlyOver Canada you will spend approximately 30 minutes getting introduced to our great country. You will first enter the preshow area where you will be immersed in an audio-visual show of Canada "up close and personal" before heading to the boarding zone for your preflight briefing. You will then hit your flight deck and spend 8 minutes on the unforgettable Ultimate Flying Ride soaring east to west over some of the most spectacular scenery the country has to offer.”
It was an “all senses” experience like no other. It covered every part of Canada, skiing, country sides, farms, cities, land, water, different seasons, Niagara Falls and  so much more – very lifelike. There’s simply no way to fully describe the experience, other than to send you to their website to “Watch The New Flyover Canada Ad” – though keep in mind, while actually there, you are made to feel as though you are physically a part of the experience.  FlyOver Canada Website & Ad Video

After venturing about and experiencing so much in one day, we left the Convention Center,
which was near the sea, stopping to watch the beautiful sunset before going back to the hotel,
warmed our kosher meals and fell asleep after a Wonderful Day in Vancouver.
««« SCHLUFF «««

Please check back soon for Day 2 – 4 of the Vancouver Trip Report Vancouver Trip Report