1 yr 1 million miles – week 1, enter now 2 win 20k SPG points and chance at Grand Prize!

This week KLM introduced their social media VIP (Very Important Puppet) named Flynt. Flynt has his own Facebook page and it’s actually pretty funny so far.

KLM has done a great job with Flynt. You should check out the interactive app. I clicked on the diary in the seat next to Flynt and a pop up calendar appeared with Flynt’s schedule. When I clicked on his bag, a map popped up. There was a post-it that said “get snow globe”. You can see the snow globe on the seat next to him…I wonder how he got that through security.

KLM’s social media team is very creative and I’m looking forward to following Flynt. The introduction of Flynt got me thinking – how many people have non-human, non-animal friends that they travel with? I know a few people, including myself, who have had a furry friend on a trip or two.

When I used to travel in the US, I stayed at a lot of Kimpton Hotels. If you know Kimpton, you’ll know they’re a pet friendly brand and go out of their way to welcome four-legged friends. I am not a pet person and as a joke, brought along a stuffed dog. He checked in with me and the staff offered him a dog treat (it was pretty funny) and then when I ordered dinner, I sat him in front of the ramekins. I had just joined twitter at this time and thought it would be a fun tweet. So I tweeted @KimptonHotels that my dog was joining me for dinner and included the picture. The tweet got a response from Niki Leondakis, Chief Operating Officer and President of Kimpton Hotels! Her response, “LOL! Is that butter in his bowl?” For one reason or another, my furry friend didn’t make another trip with me – I guess I stopped staying at stuffed pet friendly hotels.

If you read One Mile at A Time you know that Lucky’s friend – Elmo – has made at least one trip with him. I was very happy to see him seat-belted in!

 

Week 1 contest now closed

Winner – Caleb! Congratulations on winning 20k Starwood Points. 

My name is Caleb. I’m 22 years old now and I’m a Marine. I’ve had a small stuffed dog since I was 5 years old and its gone everywhere with me. When I deployed for a tour in Afghanistan two years ago, my mom told me I had to take the dog with me. I packed it in my backpack.

On the flight from San Diego to New York I was seated next to a kid who was flying alone for the first time. He was 7 years old and didn’t stop crying from the minute he boarded the flight. He was hysterical. The flight attendants couldn’t do anything. It was going to be a very long flight!

Finally I got out my stuffed dog and told him that he was a great friend and always kept me company. I asked him if he could keep him safe while I was in Afghanistan. I knew I’d never see the stuffed animal again, but the kid stopped crying and was at ease for the rest of flight.

Have you ever traveled with a friend – a stuffed friend? Here’s the contest – tell me about a travel experience that you’d have with a stuffed friend. Don’t forget – creativity is king. Did your child lose his/her favorite friend on an airplane? Have you sat next to a child on an airplane that insisted on seat-belting and feeding his/her friend? Have you been questioned at customs because of your furry friend? There’s got to be some great stories out there! (Note: You don’t need to be the owner of the stuffed animal in question – you could have witnessed a funny story that involved a furry friend, etc…)

Rules:

  • You may enter UP TO three times between today, October 1, 2012 and October 7, 2012 at 8pm EST. You can only enter 1 time per entry method. The methods are entry:
    • 1) Twitter – you must include @VeryGoodPoints and the hashtag #1yr1Mpoints. Including @VeryGoodPoints & #1yr1Mpoints will leave you with about 110 characters on twitter, so that will force some creativity!
    • 2) Facebook – you may post a picture of your favorite furry friend and explain the story in the comments. Post your picture on www.facebook.com/verygoodpoints
    • 3) Comment on this blog post (and only this blog post) – leave a comment on this blog post telling your story. Note – you will not win by saying “I want to win” or “me, me!”. Your comment must include a story about an adventure with a stuffed friend.
  • You do not have to enter on all three places to be eligible – all it takes is one great story!
  • If you enter more than one time on any entry method you will be disqualified (don’t leave two comments on this post, don’t tweet twice, etc…)
  • The winner will be selected by a panel of judges and will be selected based on creativity – we’re looking for a unique, funny, sweet, interesting…story!
  • You must be 18 and a resident of the US (excluding Rhode Island and Puerto Rico) and Canada (excluding Quebec) to enter.
  • For a full list of terms & conditions, please see the 1 Year 1 Million Mile Contest Home Page

Prizes:

One (1) winner will be selected from all entries on this blog post, twitter and facebook. The winner will be awarded 20,000 Starwood Preferred Guest Points. All entries (including those who are not winners) will be added to the grand prize drawing.

Good luck!

To recap all of the prizes by week:

Weekly Prizes –

Week 1 – Oct 1st – Oct 7th – blog post will be dated Oct 1st and deadline will be October 7th 2012, 8pm EST

Weekly prize – 20k Starwood Preferred Guest Starpoints

Week 2 – Oct 8th – Oct 14th blog post will be dated Oct 8th and deadline will be October 14th 2012, 8pm EST

Weekly prize – 50k Hyatt Gold Passport Points

Week 3 – Oct 15th – Oct 21st blog post will be dated Oct 15th and deadline will be October 21st 2012, 8pm EST

Weekly prize – 20k Starwood Preferred Guest Starpoints

Week 4 – Oct 22nd – Oct 28th blog post will be dated Oct 22nd and deadline will be October 28th 2012, 8pm EST

Weekly prize – 20k Starwood Preferred Guest Starpoints

Grand Prizes – two grand prizes will be given away based upon all entries submitted during the 4 week contest period (starting Oct 1 2012 through Oct 28th 2012 at 8pm EST). There will be one bonus entry announced during the contest period and that will count as 1 additional entry. Any participant who enters more than 3 times per week is be disqualified.

Grand Prize #1 –

300k Delta Sky Miles

200k Hilton Honors Points

Grand Prize #2 –

240k US Airways Dividend Miles

100k Marriott Rewards Points

50k Hyatt Gold Passport Points

 

Week 1 contest now closed

109 Comments on "1 yr 1 million miles – week 1, enter now 2 win 20k SPG points and chance at Grand Prize!"

  1. KAVITA BANSAL | October 1, 2012 at 2:16 pm |

    I want to win!!

  2. SHARAD BANSAL | October 1, 2012 at 2:16 pm |

    Give me those points, I need them!!

  3. KRISHIV BANSAL | October 1, 2012 at 2:17 pm |

    I need those points too!!

  4. My son took his favorite stuffed dog, Buddy, along on a trip. He has had this dog for years. He is like a security blanket. We stayed at the Westin in Hollywood Florida the night before a cruise. He must have left Buddy under the covers because the first night of our cruise he came up missing. That little boy cried and cried! He was beyond crushed. Thank goodness the good people at Westin found him and held him for us even though I didn’t call them till we returned from our cruise! They were kind enough to overnight him and boy and dog were reunited! Needless to say my son never took him on a trip again! He was too afraid of losing him!

  5. This isn’t about a stuffed furry friend but a real one. For a short time in my life I bred and showed cats. On one weekend trip, I flew to a show with my cat in its carry-on carrier. However, I didn’t happen to pay the pet fee required so never let anyone know a cat was in the carrier. Apparently, the cat didn’t fly well and had diarrhea issues during the flight. The person next to me glanced my way a few times as the smell drifted their way. How humiliating – but did save quite a few dollars for it.

  6. Abhishek Duggal | October 1, 2012 at 2:28 pm |

    I saw a whole bunch of kids on our flight out of Orlando returning home with stuffed Disney characters and yes, the overhead bins were full, but not many people were complaining!

  7. I had to fly back from Florida once with a giant stuffed tiger in my sons car seat. Told the folks laughing when it came out with the luggage “father’s side”.

  8. Mike Rogerson | October 1, 2012 at 2:34 pm |

    I am married with 3 daughters ages 12,8and 4.
    We live in Calgary Alberta Canada and usually in August we have a week long road trip to Seattle for shopping. We last year we went and my 2 youngest daughters were hearing all about American Girl dolls. Out of all the malls in Seattle area we happen to enter the one with the Americian Girl Store. I was shocked to see the fuss and cost I these dolls. Being an only male in the house I was out voted and had to come check out the store. Of course we could not leave with out spending $400 dollars on clothes and dolls.
    For the rest of the trip anywhere we went the dolls were attached to my girls.
    Restaurants, stores, pool where ever we were so we’re my girls and their dolls.
    Many other fathers made comments and eye rolls as they knew what I had got myself into.
    At least we only go once a year.

  9. Well I tried to travel with a stuffed friend. I didn’t quite make it. Several years ago I went to a convention and one of the gifts they gave to people was a stuffed animal, a stuffed monkey as I remember it. I had it in my luggage which I was carrying on board, planning to hand it off to a colleague in the office as a gag gift. Anyway my flight was way late and a very unhappy child was giving his mother fits and I opened my suitcase and pulled out the little animal and gave it to the mother. The waiting room got a little quieter.

  10. We had made a visit to see Grandma when my son was about 4 years old. One of the big things at the time for my son was Toy Story. He had a Buzz Lightyear and really wanted a Woody toy. Since Grandma was known to spoil him she purchased him a Woody toy. The stuffed kind where you pull the string in the back.

    She gave it to him right before we left for the airport. He was so excited about this toy he didn’t even want to put it in his bag. So we sit down in the United terminal in Chicago awaiting our flight back. The gate area was pretty full and we were sitting next to a business man who was on his laptop working.

    Next thing I know my son stands in front of this man…and says in his LOUDEST voice “WANNA SEE MY WOODY!!!!” You should have seen the look on this guys face! My wife was in shock and said. “He has a Woody toy from Toy Story”. And all this time my son is holding up his Woody toy in front of this man and smiling like crazy!

    A bunch of people around us were chuckling but this guy seemed kinda ticked off! My wife was mortified! She kept telling my son he needed to put away the toy but he kept wanting to show people his Woody!!! One day when he is a teenager we will share this story with him!

  11. woonmai quek | October 1, 2012 at 2:42 pm |

    I did not bring the furry friend, my 4-year old son did on our last trip to Vancouver, Canada. His cat, Mr Furry Cuddles goes everywhere with him, even pre-K. Imagine our horror when after a full day at the Vancouver Aquarium and dinner at downtown Vancouver, we got back to the hotel to find Mr Cuddles missing! Zac was devastated but bravely kept back the tears. The whole family brainstormed to try and remember when we saw Mr Cuddles last. Did he drop in the train ride back to Richmond when Zac had fallen asleep in his stroller? As a last resort, we called the hotel concierge at the Hilton Hotel, Richmond and joy of all joys, he described a white cat found in the hotel cafe at breakfast the day before! It was Mr Cuddles! Zachary was happy again and never again would we be so careless (p.s. I should start looking for a twin Mr Cuddles as back-up should the original ever get lost for real next time. If you know where I can find one, please let me know! I will be posting a picture of Mr Cuddles on the FB page)

  12. My name is Caleb. I’m 22 years old now and I’m a Marine. I’ve had a small stuffed dog since I was 5 years old and its gone everywhere with me. When I deployed for a tour in Afghanistan two years ago, my mom told me I had to take the dog with me. I packed it in my backpack.

    On the flight from San Diego to New York I was seated next to a kid who was flying alone for the first time. He was 7 years old and didn’t stop crying from the minute he boarded the flight. He was hysterical. The flight attendants couldn’t do anything. It was going to be a very long flight!

    Finally I got out my stuffed dog and told him that he was a great friend and always kept me company. I asked him if he could keep him safe while I was in Afghanistan. I knew I’d never see the stuffed animal again, but the kid stopped crying and was at ease for the rest of flight.

  13. What a good thing for the winner – perfect up till the Christmas travelling 🙂

  14. Let me set the scene: I’m 7 years old at Circus Circus in Las Vegas. My dad just gave me $100 to go wild on all the carnival-style games they have, and I was determined to use every penny (including a coupon book that I got for the games).

    I’m going counterclockwise to every game that looks like it could be fun, and mom’s carrying a giant plastic bag to collect my winnings, but then I see it. A GIANT Scooby Doo stuffed animal that I just had to have. I watched the cartoon every morning before school and for hours again after, I collected all the Burger King figurines that I could (never got the Mystery Machine unfortunately), and was just plain obsessed with it.

    Well, about $25 and a dozen knocked-over glass milk bottles later, I had my Scooby!

    A day later, when it was time to go home, my parents realize basically that “Crap…how are we taking that thing back?” I sure wasn’t leaving it behind, but we took our chances and I just walked up to the airport with it. I definitely got some looks, and was so proud of my Scooby that I was basically strutting the whole walk through the airport to security, and the moment of truth.

    My parents told me not to say a word. Their strategy was that if no one brought it up, everything should be fine. Sure enough, no one said anything…until we got to the x-ray machine. We had to tie Scooby’s tail to his body and contort it in a way that made it fit, but it fit, and I was reunited with him after I passed through.

    Then we hit the only real problem we would have. Scooby just was not allowed inside the plane with me. I was forced to gate-check my new pet, which I was plenty upset about, but I placed the tag on his collar myself, and a few hours later was reunited with him at home (and got a lot more crazy looks and laughs at the airport).

    Sadly, this post has reminded me how I wish I still had him! (had to give him away when moving about 10 years back)

  15. A few years ago I had bought a HUGE stuffed bear for my daughter (named Nelby by her..) while in NYC on a business trip. Going back home on the plane, the bear was too big to put in overhead, so I had to hold it. Thing was, I was in the exit row. Amazingly to me, the flight attendant INSISTED I put the bear in the seat next to me (which was vacant) and that I buckle up the bear…..I found the situation bizarre but kind of funny. Plus, the bear was great company!:)

  16. My ex gave me a stuffed cow a few years ago to keep me company in my lonely apartment in South America while 13676216 miles away; we were apart on different continents. The cow, in my boredom and loneliness, slowly grew its own personality and accompanied me on my many travels, even earning her own passport. She grew a place deep in my heart and I find comfort in her presence thousands of miles away from home. Friends and family know to look out for our touristic photos together in front of famous monuments and we’ve had a great time milking Flight Attendants for extra snacks and wine. It’s not weird your stuffed Cow is your best friend, is it? 😉

  17. My daughter traveled with my high school senior and myself as we were invited to an official visit to a college he was interested in playing football for. Of course, little Blackie had to come too! Little Blackie was a small furry black cat that always traveled with Lisa – her dad had bought it for her during one of his business trips so it was very special to her. Unfortunately, when we left in a hurry on Sunday morning, Blackie decided to stay at the hotel as he was apparently still sleeping under the covers. Not until we got home and it was bedtime did she miss Blackie. We called the hotel and they said they would check with housekeeping the next day. A week later a very special package arrived at our home in the mailbox – Blackie! He had been on his very special trip and it was time for him to come home. Thank you PAtrick Henry Inn in Williamsburg, VA

  18. When I was about four years old, my mother brought me a gift back from one of her business trips: a me-sized Holly Hobby-style stuffed doll. I’m not kidding about the size of this thing – it might’ve been taller than me. The doll had elastic bands on her wrists & feet designed to slip over my wrists & feet so that I could “dance” with her (and, I learned later, so that my goofy older brothers could truss her up like a Thanksgiving turkey!) I of course thought she was about the coolest thing I’d ever seen, and even now – 30+ years later – I still remember very clearly the image of my mom walking up the jetway into the terminal at Sea-Tac with this enormous doll in her arms! I have to wonder what kinds of stares/comments she got from the flight crew and fellow passengers… because that doll was definitely big enough to need its own seat!!!

  19. Robert A Patton | October 1, 2012 at 4:09 pm |

    My younger brother, Billy, has a stuffed, bear like creature that was as big as he was, named Norton. We were packing the car to drive all the way from South Texas to Canada, and the car was very full. Billy drags out this gigantic stuffed animal and placed him in the car. My dad looked at Bill and told him that Norton couldn’t come along there wasn’t room. Bill stared up at my dad with his 4 year old eyes and said, “but Norton has never been to Canada.”

    Norton not only went Canada, but 14 years later Norton went to college.

  20. My nephew in thailand has a stuffed Doraemon. He calls him “Meow” and this cat has been thru hell on earth trampled,threw up on, taken thru a shower, left in the rain, chewed up by his dogs,survived a flood and he keeps on ticking. (He keeps on getting washed.) I stopped by about year later (2009) and noticed the cat was healed. Apparently the mother found the exact same cat somewhere and bought 4 more of them. So Meow has been cloned and Nung-pooh my nephew is a happy kid. The mother has since smartened up and she recently had a new kid and she has purchased a few of the same stuffed toy. Ill be traveling to BKK this week and hope to Meow and see how hes been doing.

  21. While in Munich, my brother and I were taking a day trip to Neuschwanstein Castle. The train trip was cheaper going in a group so we went with a bunch of random people from our hostel.
    While waiting in the common area for everyone to arrive, a guy in a camo jacket with a HUGE duffel bag started chatting with us. I said to him something like, oh you’re going to the airport after the day trip? He replied no, why? So I gestured towards his large bag. He went on to open it up and pull out a small folding chair and a massive stuffed dog.
    I was really confused at first but then he pulled out his photo album. His dog had been all over the world. If we named a site, him and his stuffed dog had been there too.
    The best part was that not one photo was of the guy, they were all with his dog.

  22. I was flying out to see my grandparents for Christmas as I do every year. I was in the bathroom before my flight. There was a little boy in there by himself (I assumed his mother was the women standing outside the men’s room). He had a stuffed bear who had clearly been around for a while as it was completely worn down. As this little boy was walking around the bathroom, this bear was being dragged on the floor (O’hare airport clearly has the cleanest airport bathroom floors in the world, especially during the holidays! ;). After being completely disgusted, I went on to mind my own business and grab lunch. I noticed the kid walking around my gate before departure and I thought to myself “crap, this kid is on my flight.” Sure enough, I found my seat as I boarded the plane and the kid was in the seat next to mine. He had the urine and god knows what else soaked bear sitting on his lap resting on my arm rest. During the flight I practically sat in the aisle as I tried to not touch that bear! All I could imagine was all of those germs moving across his seat to mine. My clothes went in the wash as soon as I got to my grandparents…

  23. Every year, I travel to China to visit my grandparents, and I always bring my purple stuffed bunny, named “Mister Bunny.”

    When I was much younger, I brought Mister Bunny because I would be homesick, and he would always remind me of home. Even though I am 21 now, I still bring Mister Bunny to China, because it’s not the same without him!

  24. When I was 3, my nanny gave me a stuffed Snuffleupagus for Valentine’s Day. Pretty much until college, he traveled with me and my family on every single overnight trip (he even came home with me on some winter and spring breaks). Well, when I was about 10, he came with us on an overnight trip for a swim meet. The morning of my meet, I went to the venue early with my dad while my mom stayed behind and checked out. After the meet, we went home. When we got home, she realized she left him at the hotel. I was devastated. Luckily, the cleaning woman found him and shipped him back, unharmed. I still have Snuffy, and he still sleeps with me every night. Luckily my boyfriend doesn’t think it’s weird.

  25. I want to win too!

  26. When I was younger, I used to take a stuffed animal (Bugs Bunny) on all my trips. I even made him his own passport and everything. He was one globe trotting bunny! One time on a cruise ship, I had left him in the cabin and we came back to find him sitting up on the bed with a towel animal in his lap. Either he came to life while we were gone to work on his towel animal making skills or we just had a good cabin steward, but either way, it was cool.

  27. u r crazy…lol

  28. When my daughter was little about 3 or 4 (why is it always THAT age?) when we had taken her and her older brother to Disneyland. While there, the kids each acquired a stuffed animal. His a Mickey Mouse and Hers a Minnie. On the trip home, the animals were too large to hold and it became tiresome to maneuver around them. I suggested that they be put in the overhead bins. He agreed and Mickey was quickly tucked away, but my daughter would not let go of the Minnie. I thought she could be distracted, so I asked my husband to take her to the bathroom and I would sneak Minnie into the overhead. As per plan Minnie was stashed and I quickly sat down and pretended I’d been there all along.

    My hubby and daughter came back down the aisle, but before she climbed into her seat, my daughter noticed the missing stuffed toy … without a beat she put her little hands on her hips, tossed her hair, stomped her foot and said in a very loud voice, “Who the F#*K stole Minnie?”

    I swear that the woman across the aisle swallowed her false teeth – or at least spit up her coffee all over her neighbor!

    I sheepisly slid Minnie out from the overhead and hid behind a magazine for the rest of the flight. My husband just laughed. AAGGHH!

  29. My story dates back to the late 1970’s when my parents took us (me and my two sisters) on a road trip to Las Vegas. I don’t think my parents knew how challenging it would be to keep three teen and pre-teens occupied while they tried to gamble. To keep us “out of their way” they kept giving us money at Circus Circus. We used the money to win more and bigger stuffed animals. While my parents were complaining how expensive Vegas was and how they kept losing money, we thought it was the greatest place on earth! We ended up with so many stuffed animals that they filled the back of our station wagon. On the drive home we faced all the animals to look out the back and side windows. Our vehicle brought so much attention that we heard several truckers “CB” Radio (remember before cell phones?) talking about the car filled to the brim with all the animals. My dad even got on our radio and let us talk to a couple of truck drivers so we could tell them how we got them. Due to economic conditions we only took a hand-full of vacations as a family, and this one was definitely memorable. In fact, when our grown up families get together now the kids often ask us to tell them some of our “old stories”, including the time we filled up the car with stuffed animals and didn’t have cell phones!

  30. Several years ago, I was taking my best friends baby son to Colorado on a flight. Since it was his first time flying, he started getting nervous and would start to cry a bit at times. I didn’t know how to calm him down. I tried to think of ways to distract him and finally came up with an idea of using my unused socks in my carry-on to do a sock puppet show. I drew some eyes and nose on the sock using different colored permanent markers. I introduced my friend’s son to “Willy the Brave Warrior”. I started to tell him a story of a young boy named Willy the Brave Warrior and how he had to go across a magic and mysterious land to save his family but he was scared. As I was doing this, a kind and funnny gentleman got out his ventriloquist doll and joined in the story. At the end of the flight, I thanked him and parted. Many years later, I saw the same man on TV. His name is Terry Fator. The winner of America’s Got Talent Season 2.

  31. It’s become a family tradition to go to Starbucks at the airport prior to departure and purchase their latest Teddy Bear creation (Valentine, Halloween, Christmas, etc.). That bear is the new mascot for the entire trip!

  32. We had rented a car to take a trip to Disneyland. We live in the San Francisco area and decided to drive down instead of flying. Well my daughter brought her favorite panda suffed animal. When traveling especially in touristy areas I am very paranoid about leaving things in the car where you can see them. I hear stories on how people left cameras and bags in the car and they have been broken into. So I put everything into the trunk. So in the trunk the panda goes with all th luggage. On our last night there we get a flat tire. So we call the rental cars road side and they arrange to swap the car. They tow the car away and we get a new one. We get an early start the next morning and start our drive back home. Two hours into the drive my daughter is asking for her panda! We check around and can’t find it. Did we pack it away in a bag? Leave it in hotel? Oh crap it’s in the trunk of the original rental car! We can’t get the local number we only have the 800 number. We finally get through a few hours later leave a message for the lost and found dept. they call us back later that day and said nothing was found in our car. I asked they check again as it was deep in the trunk. They say no can do its already on rent! I asked when is it going to come back? They said its out on rent for one week however it’s going to be returned to LAS VEGAS! Our little panda is going to be alone in sin city! Now what? Do we. Go buy a stunt double panda? Can’t fool our daughter! Finally a week goes by and I get a phone call. Sir we have your panda! Overnight priority mail and we are reunited!

  33. My guy friend had a stuff bear where he carried it all over the place with him. I got annoyed at the stuff animal so I threw it on the floor. He forced me to apologize to the stuff animal. I’ve learned not to make fun of someone stuff animals.

  34. A coworker at my old office had a small stuffed penguin that sat on his desk. It was common for one of us to routinely kidnap it. He wouldn’t know who had it or where it was until it came back along with pictures posted to his wall. That penguin was well-traveled.

  35. Growing up, I had a stuffed panda bear that I would take with me everywhere. I remember when he was accidentally beheaded by a van door that I was inconsolable. But my grandfather later told me that it wasn’t a complete accident as “a gentleman your age (about 10) shouldn’t be playing with dolls anymore.” I still miss that Panda…

  36. I haven’t travelled with a stuffed friend, but my daughter brought “mongo” her monkey with everywhere for the first 5-6 years of her life. Poor Mongo’s neck was pretty thin after many trips, but we never had to worry about her sleeping. As long as Mongo was with her she slept great!

  37. I was going to Orlando with my little brother. He was about four at the time, and this was his first time on a plane. He had a favorite teddy bear who went everywhere with him.

    It was difficult getting my brother to let go of his teddy bear, so the person at the scanner gently took it out of his hands–but made a really strange face after she took it. She lifted the teddy bear up again, quizzically, and finally ran it through the scanner.

    Suddenly, another person was waived over to look at the scanner and they both looked completely stumped. Teddy went out the scanner, and got immediately picked up again by the agent.

    She squeezed the teddy bear, and I saw her getting more and more confused, and now slightly panicked. She turned over the teddy bear carefully, looking all over it, until she found a tear in the seam.

    She tentatively investigated that seam, and I soon saw her pulling something out of the teddy bear. A pack of lifesavers. Then another pack of lifesavers. And another.

    That past Christmas, a relative had given us each a 16-pack of lifesavers. My little brother hoarded all the lifesavers by hiding them in his teddy bear.

    Think about how that looked on the scanners.

    Let me pause to say, thankfully, this incident happened before beefed up security in the airport, or else Teddy would have had a far worse fate.

  38. My son used to have a stuffed yellow duck named “Shino” (pronounced Shine-Oh). On a trip back from KOA, during a layover at LAX, he lost Shino. We looked and looked, but couldn’t find Shino anywhere. He was devastated. A few minutes later, a gate agent made an announcement to find the owner of a lost stuffed duck with a toothpaste stain on his chest. My son was elated, to say the least, and ran all the way to the gate to claim his Shino.

  39. When I was little my Elmo doll never left my side. He would travel with us on every trip and I would always dress him up for wherever we were going. So much like Lucky, Elmo never left my side.

  40. 4 year old son lost his beloved, must have left him in the bed, at Disney’s Grand Californian. We called the hotel and they had not seen him, our son was devastated and thus we try to limit bringing along precious items on trips…

  41. I used to travel with a dear Gund furry polar bear named Polar Bear B (original, I know). Sadly, he was loved so dearly that he no longer has any fur.

  42. The adventure began for us as our “egg”…don’t drop it or it will break; like the parenting class we had in college. Traveling with three plush kids can be an adventure. MJ Smurf, Mickey Moore and Chicano Smurf have racked up quite a few miles since their forever family days. Chicano joined us on 12/21/11, Mickey on 03/21/12 and MJ on 08/22/12. Our latest adventure was a Princess Cruise heading north out of Seattle and prior to that they were on Easter Island checking out the Moai. They also have a pet that travels with us on occasion, and his name is Jose the Moose. They generally hide from the maid or cabin steward, but recently, the cabin steward saw them and tucked them in for the night…

  43. Im 29 and have a stuffed sheep. I named him Sheepy. My parents got me him in exchange for a promise that I would stop sucking my thumb. I took him everywhere with me including and especially when flying. I cuddled with him at night and counted sheeps to sleep. Named my video game save files or characters after him. Sheepy was everything.
    Sheepy stays on top of my nightstand now. So he still kinda stays with me at night like he used to when I was a kid. I also like to watch Toy Story with him when it comes on. I cant wait to have kids to have Sheepy protect them too!

  44. A couple had a stuffed iguana and were leaving it on the Rocks in the Lazy River at the Marriott Surf Club Aruba. We saw it floating along and decided it needed to be moved. We didn’t realize it was theirs at first but then they started freeking out that it was moved. We kept playing a game with these people and they finally got it back. Well during the week we saw them multiple times and every time they had the Iguana out and were taking pictures of it. When they saw us they would put it away but hey would break it out again quickly. This went on for days. We even saw them take it to dinner one night.

  45. The first time I went to Australia, I bought stuffed animals at the market in Melbourne as gifts for several people at home. I stuffed them all in an open top tote bag for the flight back from SYD to LAX, with all the little heads sticking out. Nobody on the plane commented, but the customs guy at LAX made a joke about importing animals.

  46. I was flying back to LAX on Asiana, sitting next to a 2 year old and her mother. She was on her best behavior until after dinner was served. She was crying, and literally kicking me at one point. Her mother was trying to calm her down and the little girl just wouldn’t have it. My friend brought me a little stuff chick when I was in Taiwan (my nickname is Chickie), I thought why not? Let see if Chickie could calm down the little girl. Right after I brought out Chickie from my carry-on, the little girl stared at my Chick for a brief moment before looking back at me. I held it out to her and she was hesitate, but eventually she took my Chickie. Believe it or not, she was perfectly contend after that. As we approached LAX, her mother was trying to get her to let go of my stuffed animal, but the little girl held on to it. I let the mother know that, she could have it. The mother tried to give me $10USD for it. But I refused, letting her have my Chickie made my flight more enjoyable since she stopped crying and kicking.

    I’m glad my little stuffed Chickie made a little girl happy. But my friend wasn’t too thrilled that I gave her gift to me away to someone else…

  47. My husband and I adopted a beautiful 18 month old little boy from Russia a little over 11 years ago. With a call that we must be in St Petersburg in less than 48 hours, we flew out on a Saturday morning, arriving in Moscow and then overnight on a train to St Petersburg at at almost the 48 hour mark. We were exhausted, excited, and VERY nervous that our son would not “like” us. We were sitting on the hardwood floor in the “vistor” room in Baby house #13 in St Petersburg, my husband just happen to pick up a small stuffed Bert doll (of Bert and Ernie fame). Not really sure why he did, but he did. He was sitting beside me holding the doll when our Eddie walked in holding one of his caregivers’ hand. We were shaking, trying not to cry, afraid of what was going to happen, when Eddie dropped the caregivers’ hand walked over to my husband, sat down in his lap and grabbed the doll. He sat there playing with the doll in my husbands lap for what seemed like an hour. He turned and looked at his new dad, and then proceded to put his head on his dad’s shoulder! My husband turned to me and said “I’m butter”. Were not able to take the doll home with us but everytime I see a Bert doll, the wonderful memories flood back. Today, that precious little boy became a teenager, he is 13.

  48. My daughter has a stuffed Elmo like Lucky and loves to take him on vacations. One day when we were running late (think Home Alone 1), we were halfway to the airport when she realized that she forgot to pack him in her backpack. So we turned around, picked up Elmo, got to the airport just as they were calling “Last Call” and made it on the plane. Phew….

  49. My sister and I traveled together earlier this year and the beginning of our trip started at the Conrad Bali. Every guestroom has a stuffed Monkey and stuffed turtle which are their mascots. Our trip was three weeks which was the longest we had ever traveled and been away from our pets. We were having a ball but were really missing our furry kids back home. By the end our trip, we were two grown adult women sleeping with our new little stuffed friends. What was funny was that at every hotel we stayed at on our trip, the housekeeping staff would place our little friends on our beds, sometimes together, sometimes on top our pillows, and once with the monkey riding the turtle on our nightstand. The best was the maid that tucked them during our turndown service. What they must have thought of us!!!

  50. When Ellen was giving away prizes for taking pics of her on your trip we took a stuffed ellen with us to Key West and to NO. We had a blast with her But we didn’t win on her show. Bummer

  51. We were on safari in Africa and met a British Couple who gave us a little red hippo…we’ve taken it to various places around the world and sent them photos of the hippo on vacation!

  52. My mother passed away a just over a year ago, and about that time a wonderful white cat showed up on my doorstep. He won my heart, and he was the most affectionate cat I had ever known. After only a year, about the time my mother had died, he got sick & died as well. Not long after, when my husband was away on a business trip he found a stuffed white cat at a store in Cherokee, NC, that looks much like my Bubba Kity did. He bought the stuffed kitty for me. The kitty traveled with him on his trip to NC, and brought him home to me, hoping to cheer me up. I am sure he looked silly, a grown man with a stuffed animal, but it was the most thoughtful gift. Now he sits on my fireplace, waiting for his next outing.

  53. The winner will be a very happy person!

  54. I have a very small plush replica of the Loch Ness Monster – ‘Baby Nessie’ – that travels with me everywhere I go. If she had an account, Baby Nessie would have many more frequent flyer miles than the average flyer!

  55. My little sister had a rough looking rag doll that went everywhere with her. Weird looking rag doll with extremely small feet. My sister called her “Ivy”. My dad called her “Dolly”. Didn’t make any sense to me as a kid. When i got older i asked dad “why did you always call that goofy doll “Dolly”? He said the doll’s small feet reminded him of Dolly Parton…what????? Are you kidding me??? I don’t get it!!! He explained to me that Dolly Parton’s feet are so small by telling me “things don’t grow well in the shade!” Poor Ivy!!!!!

  56. When my sister got married her husband was surprised to learn they’d be sharing a bed with her 20 year old “lolly” like the one seen here

    //i1359.photobucket.com/albums/q790/Sara0987654321/lolly_zps67b3bc9c.jpg

    Luckily he welcomed “lolly” with open arms and she lives happily on their bed.

  57. I am part of the PETA web patrol. My duties consist of spending hours online finding sick humans who abuse animals and making their life miserable. Sometimes I have the pleasure of alerting local police authorities to take the law in their own hands! After reading your comments and looking at the pic of an Elmo who appears to be in distress I had to call a meeting with the rest of my PETA web patrol team (long time members, Bob and Suzy) to help me diagnose the true state of mind of Elmo (they have more experience with such cases). It was a unanimous decision to let you go with a warning. Please apply seat belt properly on Elmo for God’s sake!

  58. .
    When my wife and I were in law school, we did a fair amount of driving around the US during our summers. We decided that we needed a mascot to accompany us and we found the perfect one at an antique mall in town. It was a small, red, stuffed devil from Mary Washington College, complete with hooved feet, a pointy tail, and of course their lame logo.
    .
    My wife removed said logo as contrary to our purposes and sewed on a Washington & Lee trident in its place. This had the dual purposes of flaunting W&L, our alma mater (don’t ask how a latin phrase meaning ‘nourishing mother’ came to be used to describe a law school as you probably don’t really want to know), and trident, devil, get it? (n.b. No, the devil does not have a pitch fork, it is a trident the symbol of the Greek and Roman god of the sea—Poseidon or Neptune—because the early Christians wanted to vilify other religions and . . . sorry, as my geometry teacher used to say, that is another tangent. OK, he never said that, but he should have.)
    .
    Anyway, we took Lucius all over and would pose him in each state through which we traveled. We would place him on buildings, signs, statues, and when particularly desperate for something that said ‘Kentucky’ that did not require us to spend any more time than necessary in Kentucky, the bumper of an ambulance.
    .
    In case you were wondering, yes, he did go down to Georgia, he was also very involved in planning things, not just the broad overview but he really got into the details. As you can tell from the compilation picture I posted on Facebook, he was a bit of a ham and my wife liked to egg him on. Well, enough puns for now.
    .
    If you would like to see how handsome he is, check out: //www.eisinger.net/images/Fark/Lucius2.jpg
    .
    Ike

  59. Was in a long distance (cross-country) relationship some years ago and decided last-minute to surprise my GF on what happened to be a snowstorm-packed Valentine’s Day and had brought with me a jolly Gund bear holding a package of gourmet dark chocolates for her. Boarded the plane @ 6:30AM in PHL and sat on the tarmac that (in)famous Feb 14 for five+ hours enduring multiple trips for de-icing and one to refuel. The Crew/Pilots timed out, and my dejected bear deplaned with an exhausted owner and a near-empty box of chocolates. I passed on the airlines effort to re-board assuming they could source new plane staff bound for LAX and rather, spent the day with my new buddy. I never told her about the trip attempt; we broke up a few weeks later but Sunny 🙂 is still with me. Couldn’t gift him to anyone else as we bonded, like that movie TED, during the experience!

  60. I was pretty embarrassed when the agent searched my sisters bag and placed her
    Stuffed ready bear on the table for everyone to see (she was 26).

  61. I carried a stuffed World Wildlife Fund Polar Bear adoption doll from Seattle for a Christmas present. Since it was under 1yr. old it was a sit in lap passenger!

  62. My cousin had a stuffed dog that she took with her everywhere. She lost it in FL one year and when she got home someone had found it and mailed it back to her from address on tag

  63. I had a “flat stanley” that I took to mexico and dropped him while taking a picture. He was run over by a bus and truly became flat

  64. A couple of years after my wife and I got married, we found out she was pregnant with a baby girl. We were quite excited, and began making preparations. One of the things my wife did is knit a stuffed rabbit for her.

    Unfortunately, we lost the child due to miscarriage and have not been able to have another since. I am often traveling for work and am unable to bring my wife with me, so I have picked up the habit of bringing the rabbit along – because she knit it and it was for our daughter, it almost feels like I’ve got my whole family traveling with me. I’ll set the bunny on a chair in my room and on the way out the door will say goodbye as if my wife was sitting there, just for fun. The same thing when I get back – a quick greeting as I walk in (that’s it, though – no conversations, I’m not crazy!).

    Recently, I was staying at a hotel that included free breakfast for all guests. Every morning when I went down to breakfast, the housekeeper would be cleaning one of the rooms across the hall (I had been using the “do not disturb” sign for a couple of days since I wasn’t really making a mess). On the third day, just after I left for breakfast, the housekeeper pulled me aside and she said “You know, sir – the breakfast is free for all guests here – if your “friend” doesn’t want to go down for it, you could bring her up a muffin or something”

    I didn’t want to explain about the bunny, and I didn’t want to seem crazy, so I just said thank you – I’ll do that. The rest of my stay, I was bringing muffins and fruit back for my stuffed bunny in case I ran into that housekeeper again!

  65. Jiles McCoy | October 3, 2012 at 1:33 am |

    I found a stuffed Panda at a race track on a trip to Florida once. While facetiming my family my daughter saw the animal and fell in love. This thing was rather large… so the trip back was very interesting. Luckily I had an empty middle seat for the panda 😉

  66. Michelle J. | October 3, 2012 at 2:06 am |

    My daughter acquired an adorable stuffed leopard cub at the Portland Zoo. (She decided it was a cheetah instead, however.) This “cheetah” accompanied us on the rest of our trip in Oregon and Washington, and of course home. Little did we know this was the beginning of a cheetah family that now includes enormous mom & dad cheetahs as well. 🙂

  67. I was on a plane about two years ago and near me there were two young kids, a boy (around 6) and a girl (around 3), with their Dad. A couple of hours into the flight the girl fell asleep, teddy bear temporarily forgotten. Soon, the boy started getting restless and playing with the bear. When I say playing, he used a shoelace to construct a noose around the bear, vastly amused at the prospect of annoying/terrifying his sister. Watched on with great amusement by myself and fellow travellers, the boy hooked the shoelace and tied it onto the coat hook at the back of the seat in front, leaving the bear dangling in front of the still asleep sister. Perhaps an hour later, the girl let everyone know she was awake with a loud gasp followed by a peal of laughter. Perhaps not the reaction the boy was going for, but their laughter had everyone else around them cracking up too!

  68. Richard Lionberger | October 3, 2012 at 4:57 am |

    Returning to the US on a transatlantic flight, I was traveling in First Class. My seat mate was a very attractive woman, and I struck up a conversation as we sipped on champagne while waiting for the boarding to complete. However, when she started conversing with the stuffed teddy bear she pulled out I focused intently on my reading. She continued to talk to the teddy bear the entire flight.

  69. I love Toy Story, so ironically my daughter does too. Woody, Jessie, and Buzz Lightyear not only have a special place in her bedroom, they also occupy the other half of her airline seat when we’re doing an island hop flight. I found your story about Kimpton Hotels to be similar to the rubber ducks they give us at the Marriott. It became kind of a game, collecting all the different ducks, but I think that’s what made our time away from home in a strange place, not as uncertain, not as lonely. We need to learn to expect and treasure the small things that make our travels colorful and wonderful. If I dwell on the long check in line or the full flight, I’d probably go nuts. It’s simple for my little girl, friends stay, no matter what the setting. That stands out to me in my lifetime.

  70. My little one went through a phase of wanted a cat as stuffed toy. Her grandparents and uncle found a couple of them in Johannesburg. She got very attached to one of them and was her constant companion. When we returned back to the USA, she forgot her favorite “Meow” on the plane. We noticed this after picking up 6 large bags in Baggage Claim. Pandemonium ensued! I had to get a special permit to get back in the airport, through security, to the gate to find out they had almost finished boarding the plane:-( Luckily the gate agent was able to contact the cleaning crew who located it and I was able to retrieve my daughter’s favorite “Meow”. This was about 15 months ago, when she was 15 months old. Now she likes Clifford and Floppy (her big eared dog). Hopefully one of them will get to fly to Johannesburg in the next few weeks.

  71. I still remember this, it was so traumatic. On a road trip with my family, low these many years ago, I dropped my Raggedy Andy doll at a fuel stop. We didn’t notice until much farther down the road and my long suffering Dad had to put up with wailing and pleading for the rest of the trip. From that day to last year when he passed, he sent me something Raggedy Andy every year for my birthday. You wouldn’t believe the variety of items!

  72. My 31 year old cousin travels everywhere with his small stuffed puffin named Harvey. (Sorry ladies, amazingly he’s not single) Some recent snaps on his FB page include Harvey with some salmon roe and sea urchin, a live duck, a plate of oysters, Harvey eye to eye with a duck shaped soap at a homewood suites, next to dessert course at Charlie Trotters in Chicago, and hanging upside down from a lint brush. You can’t make this stuff up people! He has actually also gotten his girlfriend a stuffed animal of a sparrow too that she now carries around with her. It’s pretty special.

  73. When I was around 9yo I kept telling my mother I wanted a real monkey for Christmas. Well I got a stuffed monkey instead. I was disappointed to say the least….though I kept it and slept with it for, well, a long time. In my mid-twenties when I started traveling I always made room in my bag for Buffy, yes I watched “Family Affair”. I am now 44 years old and still have Buffy. He only has one eye now and the one he does have had to be “surgically” replaced after a visiting dog decided to go up against a one-eyed monkey. He doesn’t travel much these days, he is quite elderly now.

  74. We took a co workers stuffed clip koala once and held it for ransom. We then gave clues to it’s whereabouts by emailing more ransom notes with pictures of the koala at various places across the globe. Whenever anyone of us traveled we took Mr Koala with us and sent a picture to inform the owner that he was ok and at some deluxe accomodations. Come to think of it I am not sure whatever came of Mr. Koala and his current whereabouts

  75. One of my best friends takes his stuffed dog with him where ever he goes. Her name is “Brownie” and he insists this dog has a personality. On our recent trip to San Diego my friend left his backpack open so that his stuff animal could breathe. One of the flight attendants thought it would be funny if Brownie demonstrated the safety procedure. So there we were watching a dog tell us how to exit the plane and put on our life vest in case of an emergency! It was a riot!

  76. I brought my King Kong toy with me once.

  77. Last year we were traveling with my 2 year old daughter to london. She has a small pillow pet that has a clip on the end. She usually attaches it to her backpack, clothes or just holds it. She is super attached to the thing. After the family settled down for the long flight she noticed that she did have her “momo”. After looking in all our bags we were figured we must have lost it. My daughter just broke down crying when we told her. All of a sudden she yells momo momo. Apparently my wife had clipped her pet to our check in luggage and my daughter saw it rolling up to get loaded on our plane. Crisis averted, however we had to listen to my daughter tell us that momo was coming to see her the whole plane ride.

  78. George Smart | October 3, 2012 at 7:06 pm |

    A drunk guy singing his way down the concourse in one of those AA carts…..now that’s entertainment!

  79. On our vacation to Australia, we bought my son a cute stuffed kangaroo. He took his “Kangy” everywhere he went. To kindergarten, dinner, and even the bathroom!

    On our recent vacation to Chicago, “Kangy” missed the flight home! We could not find him in any of our suitcases. My son was bawling his eyes out and would not settle down. He would not stop, and it got so bad that I promised him I would do anything I could to get his stuffed toy back.

    The very next day I booked a flight to Chicago using 4500 points each way (Thank You Avios!) which saved me almost $500 in airfare. I traced our steps back to the hotel and inquired at the concierge. No one had turned anything in. I went to the nearby convenience store, the museums and attractions, and all the restaurants we ate at. Nothing….

    By this time I was getting quite anxious. My flight was leaving in a few hours and I had not made any progress. When the time finally came to quit I was disheartened that I would be returning home empty-handed. I called my favorite car service to make the trip back to the airport. I got into the car, and stuffed in the back seat pocket was Kangy! My heart skipped a beat and I was overjoyed.

    I made it home with the stuffed toy and my son was ecstatic. It was all worth it just to see the smile that beamed from his face when I reunited him with his toy Kangaroo!

  80. Once I got wacked in the head by a kid carrying her huge stuffed doll down the aisle of the plane. It was definitely a life-changing experience…I now choose window seats.

  81. Flying from Guam to Honolulu last weekend, the lady sitting next to me decided to bring the biggest stuffed puppy I have ever seen! She was moving to the States from Guam and when she asked me if it was ok to keep it next to my leg room space, I dared say no! She was actually very nice during the entire 7 hour flight 🙂

  82. I usually travel with a stuffed Angry Bird. But he’s inside the cargo hold and being really angry and cold, unfortunately. He got so fascinated with the ducks from the Lufthansa FCT that he began thinking he was a duck…

  83. When my wife and I first started dating, she bought me a stuffed ninja and this ninja constantly found a way to sneak into my personal space (very stealthily and ninja-like I might add!). So, everytime I would turn around it seemed like this ninja was starting at me, and yes…this even included in my luggage (where I was most surprised during a spot inspection by the TSA…to which I had to answer “yes, I did pack my own bag – and yes, that is my stuffed ninja – it must have snuck in!”)

  84. Took a nice ten hour ride to Disneyland one year with my three year nephew. When there he wanted a stupid goofy doll that took me an hour to buy(too many people). About three hours into the ride back home he starts wacking me with the doll, non stop. I take the doll and he starts crying, give the doll back, starts hitting me again. About an hour of fun time for him he said he had enough and toss the doll out the window on the interstate. Angry, I asked him why, he says he never really wanted the doll. Never forget the doll and still talk about it all the time.

  85. I once sat on a relatively empty flight from London to Johannesburg. I sat behind a little girl who was with her mom. Because the flight was empty, after they closed the gate, the little girl got up and tried to sit in another seat, so she could have two seats for herself. I didnt know why she needed two for her tiny self, until I saw “Leo” the Lion, who she buckled up right next to her. The flight served two meals, and the little girl FORCED the flight attendant to also give a meal to Leo. The attendant on South African Airways was more than willing to make the little girl smile, and gave Leo his own meal as well. It made me smile as well, because the girl let me steal Leo’s food as long I petted him and loved him. I did so, to the tune of four delicious meals that flight.

  86. Last year when my younger sister lived with me, the first time she saw my Pooh Bear she instantly fell in love. Pooh Bear is a large (almost 2 feet) cuddly bear that I acquired in college. She immediately adopted him. When we both moved (me first, then her), she left Pooh Bear behind because he was too big. Later when my sister and her boyfriend of 3 years broke up, she was devastated. Around that time, I returned back to my aunt’s (where Pooh now lived), and brought Pooh Bear with me. He took up most of the seat, but everyone along the way fell in love with him. When he was reunited with my sister, she smiled for the first time for a long time. Even today, months later, she sleeps with him in her tiny bed.

  87. I was returning from giving aid to the victims of the Japan Tsunami last year. I wiped out my points to go there to help. If I had more points I would do this more often. As for being with a stuffed friend. Let’s just say that on the rerun trip from Jan, I made a big mistake by brushing my teeth with the water coming out of the restroom faucet and must have picked up a dreaded parasite. I BECAME the stuffed friend! I

  88. My 4-year old travels with “real blanky” the precious must never-be-lost one he sleeps with, a “car blanky”, less important, and Fox. A stuffed fox. One flight Mr. Fox was left behind and much crying ensued at baggage claim. Until a FA strolled up and handed it to us smiles all around!

  89. I adopted my stuffed Conrad bear Billy in Hong Kong and we have become true travel confidants. Billy has been on some nice vacations in the past few years, Rome and the Maldives. He didn’t like the snorkeling so much…

  90. Ever since I started travelling for my first consulting job, I have always carried my Pooh Bear. At least 10 different countries, countless hotels, and about an even split between BA, UA, and DL – he has made every trip. I never check him for fear of a lost bag, but I get some funny looks from TSA through the x-ray. My biggest fear of a hand search in front of my colleagues thankfully never has come up. He brings at least one familiar element from home during all of my travels.

  91. in Munich we found a stuffed animal – a bird. We were at Oktoberfest and named her “Gretchen.” It turns out a bunch of Germans sat down at our table and brought a male version of Gretchen, so we named him Hansel. She found a mate at Oktoberfest!

  92. Last year my wife and I stayed at an intercontinental hotel in Asia to celebrate our marriage anniversary. We arrived at the hotel early and our room was not quite ready, they very personable ambassador receptionist tried to stall us a little by chatting with us and making pretend he was typing a ton of important things on the computer. After a short while we went to the room. I expected to have some wine and roses in the room, where upon I’d lie to my wife and say I bought them. Instead the room was packed with multi colored balloons and about 5 minutes later the Ambassador receptions presented us with chocolate cake. I specifically noted in my reservation that we were on our anniversary, not a birthday. Since the setting was not very romantic my wife took out Mico (the stuffed monkey she brings on all trips) and started taking picture of him with the balloons and cake as if it was his birthday. It started as cute pictures and after a while Mico was holding two bottles of Carlsberg beer with each furry hand, and giving thumbs-up as he was depicted drinking beer. The beer apparently got to his head because the final picture had him sitting on an electronic Japanese style toilet while having toilette paper strung around him, silly monkey. The next morning he was more lifeless than usual.

  93. I never traveled with a stuffed friend, but we did bring a live baby goat home from Hawaii one time. One of my mom’s good friends in a DVM over there and gave us little “Doc”, who was of course named in his honor. We got a crate for him and checked him in with United at Kahului airport just like he was a dog. I have to say there were some pretty confused and disappointed kids who peeked in his cage expecting to see a puppy and got a “baaaaah” instead.

  94. So I was at this furries conference…nevermind.

  95. It’s been many moons ago, but my family visited Walt Disney World in Orlando, FL during its opening month. I remember driving home with the stuffed Tigger that my parents bought for me. I still have it, almost forty years later.
    Thanks for the contest!

  96. I am a weekly business traveler and I always feel guilty leaving my little yorkie, Sophie, behind. When I pull away from my house, she’s always sitting in the window with one of her favorite stuffed toys. To my surprise, she has started burying a little blue stuffed monkey in my suitcase. I have to say that everytime I open my suitcase in a different hotel and I see my little dog has left me a present, it warms my heart.

  97. Myself and my wife bought a small brown stuffed teddy bear for our daughter before she was born. My daughter is 3+years old now and she calls the stuffed friend as “First Gift”. She would not sleep or travel when her “First Gift” is not near. Blessed to have cute things with us.

  98. This is quite easy. The first present I ever got from my wife was a very cute stuffed panda.
    Since my wife was living in China back then and we only knew each other from email exchange, we needed to find the perfect spot to meet, so we decided on the Maldives for our first date and there she gave me the panda.
    Since our first date the panda went with me on every leisure trip I took and has been to six continents just after he turned one 🙂
    I only have to watch out that my mother-in-law doesn’t see him, since she always says that he looks like a dead rat 🙂

  99. Our daughter, Izzy, used to travel with a small stuffed rabbit, Flopsy. Flopsy would sit on the tray table, and be offered items of food and drink. On one flight, Flopsy was given some apple juice. Whilst waiting for out bags at SEA, the drug beagle came by, and sat down by Izzy’s backpack. The customs officer asked for permission to search the bag, and then emptied the whole thing out on the floor and rummaged around in the contents for about 10 minutes. Our bags arrived, so I asked the officer what she was looking for. “Apples”! WTF says I – I thought this was a drug dog. Nope, in Seattle we are more worried about apples…

  100. My dad and i have this ongoing little game we have played for as long as i can remember. I will be 24 on Dec. 30 2012. My dad is 60. It involves this little plastic blue and red SpiderMan toy about 2 inches tall. I don’t remember who or how it started. The toy goes back and forth between the 2 of us. I have found it under my pillow…i have put it in his suitcase when he travels…he has put it in a shoe of mine…i have mailed to the front desk of a hotel he is staying at…etc. etc.. It’s like stories of the Stanley Cup and all the weird places its been found. If only the little bugger could talk!!! I smile every time i find it and then try to figure out a way to get it back to him and surprise him too. Sometimes it won’t show up for months…and then i will open a drawer…or go looking for bacon in the freezer or get more checks for my checkbook…whatever??? and there he is!!! When i find it…i always smile and try to think of a creative way to get it back to him. That stupid little toy…worth a few pennies has been a wonderful reminder to both of us that we have and love each other very much. When i find it i know my dad has been thinking of me…plotting a way to make me smile…taking the time to get sneaky…and get a chuckle out of life. Thanks SpiderMan…love you Dad!

  101. My wife and I travel a lot. But since she’s also a teacher, she can’t go on every trip I want to take and will often wander off solo.

    My wife also is a big fan of various exotic stuffed animals and her favorite animal is the sea turtle. Because of that, many friends over the years have given her toy turtles, not necessarily sea turtles. Such is the case with Junior – a beanie baby otherwise known officially by Ty as “Zips” – which became our travel mascot.

    Though he’s gone on many trips, the first major one was in December 2007 / January 2008 when I spent a few weeks in Europe while my wife was unable to join. I took Junior along and sent my wife photos of his adventure throughout the entire trip. Both she and my mother-in-law thought it was absolutely hysterical.

    Junior ventured all over London, Dublin, Kilkenny, Kinsale, Cork, Cobh, Amsterdam and Brussels on that trip. He had a blast and has this Picasa photo journal to remember the entire adventure.

    //goo.gl/FS1o6

  102. Bryan Schmiedeler | October 6, 2012 at 2:57 am |

    I would love to win!

  103. while in high school, my twin daughters took a Shakespeare class. Hidden in a box of acting props was an old Cabbage Patch doll. She immediately became a very important part of all the Shakespeare plays. She went with us on many trips and even has her own facebook page and a dance video. Her name is Hamnet. One time, after the girls went off to college, Hamnet was left at home but was not fitting in to well to the quite life on the farm with out a bunch of teenage girls so I decided to pack her up and we went to Cleveland,Ga to visit BabyLand General Hospital, her birth place. It was a magical time. So much better than the time she almost got bitten by a shark in Destin, Fl, and a lot cleaner than the time she rode an alpaca at the Nashville zoo. //www.facebook.com/hamnet.shakespearepruett?ref=ts&fref=ts

  104. During my first pregnancy (6 months into the pregnancy) my husband & I had to travel from Cincinnati to Mumbai, India to meet my relatives. We planned to take the new Delta long haul non-stop flight from JFK-BOM. I had lots of gifts including 4 feet teddy that we had bought from Smoky Mountains. I had taken this teddy with me on flight. We were waiting to board at JFK (lots of Indian kids playing around). A 4 year old girl saw my teddy and she was very excited to see it. She wanted to play with it and requested me if she could borrow and play with it. Her mom was a bit reluctant but they she started to cry badly. For approx 5 mins her mom tried to console her. However boarding was announced and then the girl started to create a scene. She was not ready to move at all. Finally I went to her and gave her the teddy and told her mom to return it to me later after we had boarded. The girl was so happy that she got the teddy (& I assume she thought it was all hers !!!)

    After boarding I was tired and went to sleep in a few hours. I actually forgot abt the teddy totally & after we reached BOM her mom returned to us while we were collecting the luggage. The girl came to me and gave me a big hug and kissed me. It was very touchy for me. I got my first motherly feeling at that moment !!!

  105. My “friend” isn’t furry but he is flat! I work at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston, where we have the Jimmy Fund, a fundraising organization for kids and adults with cancer. Flat Jimmy (modeled after the kids book Flat Stanley) has been traveling the world the past few years with staff members taking pictures at all the famous sites (and some not so famous)! The pictures are hung on a world map in our offices in honor of those fighting cancer that can’t (at least for now) get to all of the wonderful places this world has to offer. It’s a daily reminder and motivation of why we do what we do everyday. This summer I had Flat Jimmy with me in Salzburg, Austria and while I was taking a picture with him an 84 year old man approached me and told me he was a two-time cancer survivor that was treated at Dana-Farber! That picture of a smiling Sam and Flat Jimmy now hangs prominently on the map pointing to Austria! Makes me smile every time I walk by it!

  106. I have a friend who due to medical reason cannot travel. She has a little stuffed dog animal that she gives to people to take with them and take pictures when they travel. I took him on my RTW trip last year and brought her a tons of picture of the dog with famous places. I’m glad she loves it!

  107. Traveled to Tazmania, Australia. The Warner Brothers “Tazmania Devil” is being sold to preserve/study their habitat for this protected species. First place I saw the 30′ plush doll was at the Australian equivilant to US Fish and Wildlife Service. Did not buy because couldn’t figure out why I needed it.

    Later in the trip, went on a mine tour with a large bar. Surrounding the bar were about 40 of the dolls for sale. A couple of drinks and I bought one. From Sidney to San Francisco, Taz was in the overhead bin. While on this leg, bought a bottle of duty-free Johnny Walker Blue. After landing in SF, realized I just couldn’t take the bottle back on the plane. Bought a sports bag at airport, packed the bottle with the Taz as padding, checked the bag and flew home to the east coast.

    About two weeks after coming home, a good friend became a great-grandfather. Gave the doll to the child, with great shots of Taz terrorizing a 5-day old. The Johnny Walker Blue was used to toast his great-grandchild, with the understanding that the bottle will also be used for his wedding in about 25 years. After 6-years, still about 80% full.

  108. I bought a stuffed doll for my friend’s birthday and I put it in my suitcase. And I don’t know why the doll accidentially turned it on my itself and had some vibration during the check-in process to the immigration. And I was asked to open my suitcase and search for the vibrating ‘object’. The whole situation is embarrassing, as I know that some immigration staff thought that I brought a vibrator. Not only that, my friend discovered the gift that she will have for her birthday! Double Trouble for me! Oops~

  109. Love to take my wife to Paris for the weekend

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