Websites, Services & Products that I like

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Entertainment

  • Facebook I use Facebook to stay in touch with friends
  • Netflix Streaming video. DVDs by mail also available (we no longer do the mail order portion though).
  • Amazon Prime Instant Video Streaming video. Free shipping also included within the US.
  • Hulu Watch TV shows & movies online for free legally
  • Pandora Free music streaming service that plays new & old music based on what you like
  • National Geographic I get several e-newsletters and enjoy the pictures & articles
  • slashdot News for nerds, stuff that matters

Online Games

Shopping

Stores

  • Amazon Buy and read reviews on almost any product
  • Monoprice Very reasonable prices on cables and other IT/AV supplies
  • eBay Buy stuff cheaper (sometimes) and/or locate hard to find items
  • DealExtreme Excellent prices and free shipping direct from Hong Kong for small gadgets and electronics

Comparison/Deal Sites

Reshipping Services

These companies offer re-shipping so that you can order from stores that only ship within the 48 contiguous states. This service is typically much more affordable than standard freight forwarding options.

  • Aloha Forwarding Used this service once and it was smooth. They support USPS and charge actual rates plus a handling fee.
  • My American Shipper Haven't tried this service yet, but they will ship via USPS or DHL all over the world.
  • My American Shopper Sister site to the one above, but they will actually place the orders for you. This is useful if you don't have a US based credit card for example.

Photography

  • SmugMug Photo hosting with unlimited storage and downloadable original image files
  • Quadro Frames Glass clip frames with no border
  • Nations Photo Lab Large prints for a decent price (plus much more that I haven't tried yet including books, cards, etc)

iPhone Accessories

iPhone Apps

Travel

Travel research often involves many varied sites, but here are a few that I use often and a couple that are unique enough to mention.

  • Kayak Search aggregator, also has a way to view miles balances for multiple airlines in one place.
  • Mobissimo Good for international deals.
  • Expedia Tickets, Hotels, Cars, etc
  • Yapta Flight price tracking, including alerts if you can get a refund due to price drops after tickets have been purchased
  • Bing Travel Flexible fare search with farecast fare predictions
  • Tripadvisor Hotel reviews and more
  • Airtreks Affordable, multi-airline around the world tickets (I have never actually used them but it's fun to dream)
  • Travelzoo Travel Deals
  • BoardingaArea Good collection of travel articles from various blogs
  • Upgrade:Travel Better Informative travel blog (seems to have gone dormant)
  • Ask me about being an airline pilot or flying in general Very long and informative Q&A with an airline pilot (I am on page 84)
  • Optiontown Low cost upgrades and other benefits on a few airlines
  • Rome2rio Travel search that includes air, train, bus, and taxi results

Real Estate

  • Trulia Real Estate maps, sales history, etc
  • Zillow Home value maps, trends, etc

Financial

Services

  • USAA Excellent checking/savings and other services.
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred Earn points, transfer to miles with multiple airlines or cash. No foreign transaction fees.

Reference Sites

Cellular Service

  • HowardForums Carrier discussions which can be helpful when researching options.
  • Whistleout Cellular plan & phone comparison site. Enter in your criteria and get a list of plans.
  • Net10 Non Walmart branding of the StraighTalk service from Tracfone. Can get starter SIM cards on eBay for much less than StraightTalk SIMs.

While traveling in the mainland US I have tried several prepaid services including Net10, StraightTalk, SimpleMobile and AT&T GoPhone. My current favorite for both short and long term service in the US is Net10 at $45 for unlimited data, text and talk, although there are some reports of soft caps on the data at 2GB per month. This hasn't been a problem for me though so far.

  • Ting Offers pay for what you use cellular service on Sprint and T-Mobile networks.
  • FreedomPOP Free 4G data service (at least 500MB per month), free voice services in the works too. I'm keeping an eye on this one, but coverage is limited so far.

Products

Baby Gear

  • Phil & Ted's Explorer Stroller Double stroller with travel bag.
  • BebePod Plus Seat with tray & toy attachment.
  • Kidco Hand Food Mill Handy for making your own baby foods, especially while traveling.
  • Kidco PeaPod Tents (we have both lite and plus models, they have recently issued a recall though so may be hard to find until new models are released)

Kitchen Stuff

IT Resources

Blogs

Security Resources

Email Migration

Gadgets