Scribe for the likes of Vogue, Elle and Harper’s Bazaar, and author of New York Times bestseller Classy, Derek Blasberg took a few minutes out of his packed travel schedule (he’s been touring Very Classy, his expanded paperback on etiquette and style) to answer our Proust-inspired questionnaire.
The in-flight film you hope for: Mamma Mia! starring Meryl Streep, puts you straight to sleep.
The last book you took on holiday: I actually just finished The Marriage Plot by Jeffrey Eugenides, and that was amazing. I’m now reading Madame Bovary—Lydia Davis’ version—I haven’t read it since high school.
You tend to pack too many…: Shoes.
Your idea of travel happiness: Out of cell reception, no network available.
Your idea of travel misery: [He laughs] No network available.
Your favorite quality in a hotel: A bathtub. You don’t realize how much you like them until you start getting rooms without them.
What do you appreciate most in a travel partner? Spontaneity.
What is your greatest extravagance while abroad? Breakfast.
What is your favorite journey to take? Going home to St. Louis, Missouri.
What is your greatest fear abroad? Losing my passport.
Which historical world traveler do you most identify with? Hemingway got around.
What is the travel habit you most deplore in yourself? Jet-lagged-ness.
What is the travel habit you most deplore in others? Lack of jet-lagged-ness.
In what travel situations do you lie? Whenever it saves time, including [to] custom officials and hotel concierges.
When and where were you last happiest? I was happy coming to Vancouver today, the weather’s beautiful.
What is your most treasured take-along? Laptop, but that’s sort of a boring answer. Very soft socks.
What is your travel motto? You’ll never get an upgrade if you don’t ask.