Saturday, April 30, 2005

Can Valuair considers a Budget Airline?

Over the last year, 3 budget airlines, or low-cost carrier (LCC), or no-frill airlines, emerge in Singapore. Valuair was the first to start flying. But the problem is I don't think Valuair's air fares are attractive enough. Of all the 6 destinations Valuair currently serve, namely Bangkok, Hong Kong, Jakarta, Perth, Xiamen and Chengdu, the air fares are just slight lower than the conventional airlines. And to get the cheapest air fares from Valuair, you need to book extra early. So initially I was very excited to know that finally there is a 'budget carrier' that fly to Xiamen and Chengdu in China. But after I saw the airfare, it's sort of more of the same with other airlines, including SilkAir.

To be fair, I like Valuair all passengers pay the same fare feature. It won't let us get physiological unbalanced after knowing other passengers paying considerably lower than me. Or even worse, the case with Tiger Airways that the air fare get cheaper.

Got back $5 but still lose $5

Finally my colleague paid me back additional $5 for the deposit of EZ-Link card. Few days ago I told her she needs to pay me more $5, but she didn't seem to understand what I say. But now I still lose $5, as when I buy new EZ-Link, the $5 deposit no longer can take back!

Thursday, April 28, 2005

Good News! Get Listed on Open Directory Project

My story on my trip that travel to Egypt and Jordan finally get listed on ODP, or Open Directory Project. It takes about 2 weeks after I submitted it to get listed, and the editor just looked at the blog's main page only and instantly approved my blog under Middle East section, although I haven't complete, or even start to write about travel in Jordan yet. You can find the listing here.

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Lose $5 for EZ-Link and may be friendship?

EZ-Link card is the only stored value card that can be used on public transport in Singapore. Previously, whenever you buy an EZ-Link Card, you need to pay additional $5 as deposit. However, nowadays, for new EZ-Link card that is been issued, the $5 no longer refundable.

Been kiasu (Singapore term for afraid to lose out), I bought additional 2 EZ-Link card just before the day all new cards no longer refundable took effect. I have other intention too other than kiasu, one is what if I lose my existing card? Another is so that whenever my family or my friends come to Singapore, I can borrow them the card instead of them buy the new card and pay the unnecessary $5.

My colleague saw I put the 2 EZ-Link card on my computer table. She called me and wanted to buy 1 from me. Of course I said cannot as it's not fair to me as I have to pay the $5 to buy a new card, and also not fair to my smartness :). Yet she was so not embarassed, insisting in getting 1 from me. What can I do? Worst, she took it and paid me only $6.60, the usable card value. How about the invisible $5 deposit?

I am very not happy with this incident. This is not because I am so stingy about $5. All the while I have been so kind to her, letting her to use my pc almost everyday (I stay above her office, actually is company hostel). Besides, I don't say a word too about the colleagues, including her downstair wear the shoe straight into my hostel. Although she is kind to me too, but I think it's good if she leave my things intact, don't spoil too much of my privacy. Arrgghhhh, think I need to give her some warning....

I made it!

Okay, I managed to complete the JPMorgan Chase Corporate Challenge's 5.6 km in 43 minutes 55 seconds. Not fast, but I am so happy that I can finished it, despite so tired now. What's more, I managed to run (Ok, actually was jog) for the first 2.5 km non-stop, a record for me. After that it was part running part walking for me. Much room to improve. :)

Torture Myself

Sometimes I keep wondering why there are always some people who like to tortore themselves, by doing all sort of things that can hurt themselves. Yet, this is what I am going to do by participating in JPMorgan Chase Corporate Challenge. I haven't exercised for quite a while. Even last time when I used to jog, the most I can run is just roughly 2 km. Now, 5.6 km. Not too long, but let's see whether I can make it or not. God bless me.

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

She comes to my house!

Li Tit came to my house today to do her income tax filing. I am so happy finally can meet up with her again. She is very hard to date, this may be countable times of meeting up with her since I been in Singapore 4 years back.

Why nobody interested in my blogs?

The daily visitors to my blogs have to exceed 10 a day for a few days now. This compared with around 20 unique visitors a day when I just started the blogs. It's very frustrated to know that nobody actually visits your blogs, and hence also reduce the possibility of ads revenue. Guess I need to promote more, but how?

Monday, April 25, 2005

Google Search Engine Challenge

Finally, my travelogue on travel to Egypt and Jordan is been indexed by Google Search Engine. However, the spider only crawled the index page only, not yet crawls the archive pages yet. Think I still need to give Google some time to pick up everything.

Getting indexed by Google has been the big challenge for me. They're simply too many suggestions by expert on so how to get listed in Google, including how to get listed in 2 days. I am not sure if the method linking from high PageRank site will works or not, as my 2 other blogs haven't been even noticed by Google yet since I joined a link exchange program 3 days ago. And frankly, to find a high PageRank site that willing to link to you is not easy.

Here is what I found DID work to get my blog listed:

1. Posting in forum: I tried that in Blogger Forum. I posted a few posts with the link to my blog and it get Google noticed it in a day or two, although hasn't crawled the blog yet. And I also found that by putting the link in the signature is not working, as my two other blogs haven't even been noticed by Google, despite so many links to them have been captured by Google in my signature in forum.

2. Link from directory: I am not sure if it's just plain coincidental. But once my travel blog get listed in a travel directory, my index page is been crawled, and now search result returns proper blog title and description.

What I am not sure is whether Add URL in Google is actually working or not, as I did submit my blog via Add URL, while my other 2 blogs are not. And also link exchange. My other 2 blogs are currently on link exchange with other blogs only, some of them even have PageRank of 6. So let's see if they will get noticed and crawled by Google soon.

Saturday, April 23, 2005

SingNet is getting worse each day...

I was half way typing into Blogger when suddenly 'down' in a short that I cannot browse all overseas website at all. And thus, all my typing was lost. I am getting crazy. This is not the first time SingNet had this kind of problem, yet it happens and again. All this problem on top of traffic shaping on p2p file sharing by SingNet with P-Cube. It is very frustrating that whenever reach their so called 'peak hour', the download speed automatically dwindling down to kind of non-exist!

Friday, April 22, 2005

Gapbuster Mad Rush

Gapbuster is one of the very few mystery shopping companies that has regular mystery shopping assignments in Singapore. Every month, Gapbuster will post all the assignments that are available for the following months. Nowadays, the assignments are vanishing very fast, some half an hour right after it's been put up, you will be sure that most of the assignments with good location and time slot are gone. Just few months ago, it's not so hot yet. Guess this few months there have been a lot of new mystery shoppers. With this speed, I guess within a few months most jobs will be taken by few minutes of available.

Tiger Airways and Early Birds

Tiger Airways says at the FAQ:

"Our airfares are quoted in tiers tagged to market demand. Hence, we recommend that you book as early as possible. Generally speaking, the earlier you book the cheaper the fare will be. We always start by selling the lowest fare. Once that is sold out, we sell the next lowest available fare etc. All fares listed are on a one way basis."

But it seems like not the case, at least for mine. After I booked 2 tickets to Hanoi with Tiger Airways, I noticed today that Tiger Airways is offering even lower fares now, with the starting fare of just SGD $9.98. So, everybody that buy the ticket later than me can fly cheaper than me. It makes me furious.

Actually before I bought the tickets, the Tiger Airways air fare to Hanoi actually stands at SGD $69.98 for the dates I want. Then the promotion of from SGD $19.98 to all their destinations came, and now they made it from SD $9.98 to all their destinations. And all these are for the same period of travel. It seems like Tiger Airways really get the demand estimate wrong.

I am very Slow....

Initially I planned to update my travel to Egypt and Jordan each day for each day of travel. Seem like now I am way behind schedule. I have to do it faster, I hope I will and I can.

Thursday, April 21, 2005