McCool Travel interview with Lance Longwell and Laura Longwell of Travel Addicts.

5 Minutes With Lance and Laura Longwell of Travel Addicts

For McCool Travel’s 168th travel interview, I am pleased to present Lance and Laura Longwell of Travel Addicts.

Lance and Laura Longwell’s bio:

Since 2008, Lance and Laura have published the popular blog Travel Addicts which focuses on helping North Americans maximize their limited vacation time to see the world. Over the last 15+ years, they have traveled to over 50 countries on five continents while enjoying street art, local food markets, music, and the very best in local delicacies they can find in every destination.

McCool Travel interview with Lance Longwell and Laura Longwell of Travel Addicts.

Lance Longwell and Laura Longwell of Travel Addicts in Ecuador

Lance and Laura Longwell of Travel Addicts

HOMETOWN …

Laura grew up in Dallas, Texas. Lance grew up in Golden, Colorado (the self-proclaimed beer capital of America). Our paths collided on the Upper West Side in New York City, so we’ll always consider that “home” no matter where we live, which is currently in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

ALWAYS IN MY LUGGAGE …

For Laura, it’s her laptop, a mountain of old magazines she hasn’t had the time to read (that’s what airplanes are for!), and her trusty hair dryer (because hotel dryers just don’t get the job done).

For Lance, it’s his laptop, headphones, a pair of earplugs, and pajamas that say, “I’m Much Nicer After Coffee.” He strives to live up to the motto…on most days.

3 FAVORITE HOME-AWAY-FROM-HOME PLACES …

  1. Rome
  2. New York City
  3. Nuremberg, Germany

A FAVORITE TRAVEL MEMORY …

For Laura, it would be our trip to Ecuador. We spent two weeks in Ecuador exploring the back alleys and restaurants of Quito, hiking and horseback riding in the Andes Mountains among the volcanoes, and visiting the curious Galapagos Islands. Ecuador is a land of many cultures and contrasts, and this was an absolute trip of a lifetime.

For Lance, it’s our recent trip to Norway to photograph the Northern Lights. We’d always wanted to see the polar lights, so traveling way above the Arctic Circle in the middle of the frigid winter was the plan. They were more beautiful than we could ever possibly explain. Even photos of the swirling green mists in the sky can’t do them justice.

McCool Travel interview with Lance Longwell and Laura Longwell of Travel Addicts.

Northern Lights by Lance Longwell and Laura Longwell of Travel Addicts

3 FAVORITE TRAVEL BRANDS …

  1. Starwood hotels and resorts
  2. Osprey bags
  3. Sony cameras

3 MONEY-SAVING TRAVEL TACTICS I USE …

  1. Piggybacking. We travel frequently for work, so we always piggyback vacations and holidays onto work trips. If your employer is paying for your single largest expense (usually airfare) you can travel more and fit more into your trips.
  2. Travel hacking. Frequent flyer and hotel loyalty programs can be a godsend for saving serious money on your travels.
  3. Rentals. If you’re going to staying in an area, renting an apartment or a house can be cheaper and more spacious than staying in a hotel. Plus, you have the option to cook, which can save you even more.

3 WAYS THAT I HAVE FUN WHILE TRAVELING …

  1. Don’t over schedule your days. We’re planners. We admit it. We love to have detailed schedules of all the things we want to do. However, we always leave blank spots in the schedule for serendipity to happen. Some of our favorite travel moments have happened when we’ve junked the schedule and wandered into the unknown.
  2. Talk to the locals. In cities around the world, locals can be both a wealth of knowledge about your destination and can also give you insight into the local cultural.
  3. Always pack a swimsuit. You never know when you’ll end up at a hot springs or a beach that was totally unplanned. Those can also be some of the best memories.

8 WORD (OR LESS) TRAVEL MANTRA …

What’s local?” It’s usually the first question we have about any destination—from what there is to do to what locals eat and drink. You can never go wrong with local.

McCool Travel interview with Lance Longwell and Laura Longwell of Travel Addicts.

Lance Longwell and Laura Longwell of Travel Addicts in Bergen

FAVORITE NON-TRAVEL WEBSITE …

CNN. We are both news junkies. In these especially troubled times, we find ourselves frequently checking in for the latest world news.

MOST MEMORABLE SOUVENIR …

We buy Christmas ornaments from our favorite destinations, but our favorite things to bring home are local wines and distilled spirits. We’ll open our purchases few months after we get home and reminisce about the trip. It’s a great way to live through experience twice.

FAVORITE CHEAP EAT …

Bratwurst. There’s just something so amazing classic about grilled sausages. All great food cultures have some variation of this absolutely indispensable food. (Pro tip: For Lance, who is an expert on such things, the best in the world can be found in Wurzburg, Germany.)

RECENT DISCOVERY …

It is a scientifically validated fact that any wine consumed on one’s birthday does not contain any calories.

I AM FORTUNATE TO HAVE MET …

Pete and Dalene Heck from Hecktic Travels. They’re damn cool people and we respect them and their aesthetic. We spent a week with them in Ireland a few years back.

McCool Travel interview with Lance Longwell and Laura Longwell of Travel Addicts.

Lance Longwell and Laura Longwell of Travel Addicts in Slovakia


Thank you so much, Lance and Laura, for sharing your travel inspiration and tips.

Follow Lance and Laura Longwell on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter, and Travel Addicts.


McCool Travel presents tips from travel experts in our 5 Minutes travel interview series—featuring travel industry giants, super frequent travelers, and adventurous persons. Check out McCool Travel’s previous travel interviews. Previous 5 Minutes travel interview: Cheryl MacDonald and Lisa Chavis of What Boundaries.


Follow McCool Travel on FacebookTwitterInstagram, PinterestFlipboardLinkedIn, StumbleUpon, and Bloglovin.

Tags: , ,

No comments yet.

McCool Travel wants to know ...

%d bloggers like this: