SmartPark JFK Parking – Every 7th day free

We decided to give our readers a promo for JFK long term parking. Try it out, post your feedback and tell them we sent you! Here is what SmartPark JFK has to say about JFK parking to the TLV2JFK community:

How smart are you? Pay less for JFK Airport Parking and get more.

June 9, 2009 was the official launch of SmartPark JFK website. The answer to all your airport parking woes.

Easy as 1… 2… 3 to locate at: 123-10 South Conduit Avenue, South Ozone Park, NY 11420, only minutes from JFK Airport. No nonsense, service with a smile to meet all of your 24/7 airport parking needs.

Bringing back the concept of the way it used to be. At our facility you will be received immediately by a member of our highly trained staff on an interpersonal level.  At SmartParkJfk, our priority is for you to be our guest not just another number.

In a rush? No problem. We will expedite all of your forms and paperwork for you and you will be on your way within minutes. A 5-7 minute ride door to terminal. Tired of the old broken down shuttles, no worries, our new, state of the art, plush shuttles and skilled valet drivers will have you riding in style.

As of late, the surrounding parking facilities along with the port authority are raising prices. In this time of economic hardship, we here at SmartParkJfk want to work with you.

We are on a separate road (pun intended) and have lowered our pricing via our “Smart Summer Stimulus Special” from $14.00 per day to a low $12.00 per day, adding only NYC (10.375%) parking tax. Stay with us for 6 days and every 7th day that you leave your vehicle with us, it is a FREE parking day for you.  Go to SmartparkJFK  and make a regular reservation then click here for Special JFK2TLV Coupon for every 7th day free rate.

Running late, flight delays, no worries, we have No late fees for arrival within 5 hours of your confrimed scheduled vehicle pickup.

The 5 Hour Grace period

Online Reservation:

If you make a FREE online reservation, please note that the check in time chosen online will almost always differ from your “Actual” check in time. So, your 29 hours starts from the “Actual” check in time at the SmartPark JFK airport parking facility.

Walk-in Reservation:

A walk-in reservation confirmed check-in time starts your 29 hour clock.

We are here for you and with you to make the anticipated, mundane and usually stressful travel experience, stress free.

Do you own a GPS navigation system; even better, your car will drive you right to our door, just look up to see our Signature cartoon smart, Einstein logo.

Our facility offers an all inclusive service from drop off to pick up with your baggage handling to the terminal if you so choose.

Also added for your convenience is our colorful, yet simple, user friendly website with the easy to see “reserve”, it is as easy as click and reserve, done!

Look for the signature cartoon Einstein logo.  Why Einstein logo you may say, Einstein was intelligent and smart and so are you for using SmartParkJfk.


Enjoy your beach vacation in NY or Israel!

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In Memoriam – Nahum and Nava Sharfman


This post has evolved into a collection of photos, video, death notices, links and personal comments. You are invited to share your thoughts here.

A new link from the Commtouch website– Gideon Mantel’s tribute to Nahum. And from Beit Issie Shapiro, where Nahum served as Chairman  (International) of American Friends of Beit Issie Shapiro.

This is my original post:

I just heard the horrible news – Nahum and Nava Sharfman were killed in a plane crash in Greece. Nahum was an inspiration to me from the day I met him 25 years ago. First and foremost, he was a real mentch, in every sense of the word.

And in the spirit of Yom HaAtzmaut – I consider Nahum one of the founders of the country.

He brought world class standards to National Semiconductor’s Herzliya Design Center, standards which are in a large way responsible for Israel’s high tech leadership position.  His goal was nothing short of creating the “Best Design Center in the Universe”.

As founder of he created Israel’s most successful consumer internet site and will remain an inspiration to all entrepreneurs who had the honor of knowing him.

May his spirit live on in the lives of thousands of people whose lives were touched by him.

Yehi Zichram Baruch


Nahum and Nava1-small

You are invited to share your thoughts here.

You are invited to share your thoughts here.

nahum_and Nava_sharfman_2005

Nava and Nahum Sharfman in 2005


Nahum and Nava Sharfman with Bill Clinton in 2005


(L to r) – Ran Talmudi, Sidi Yomtov, Avraham Menachem, Nahum Sharfman and Asher Kaminker

ex_national_VIPsand wives

With Nava and the other spouses

Nava and Nahum Sharfman Death Notice from National

Nava and Nahum Sharfman death notice from National Friends

Death Notice from familyNava and Nahum Sharfman death notice from family

Nava and Nahum Sharfman death notice from Commtouch family

Nava and Nahum Sharfman death notice from Beit Issie Shapiro

You are invited to share your thoughts here.

Yediot Ahronot - April 29, 2008

Yediot Ahronot - April 29, 2008



















El Al Frequent Flyer Stealth Program


No – El Al is not using stealth technology on their planes, but they are trying to use  stealth sneaky shady methods to steal poach the competition’s frequent flyer data. And they were not very shy about this disgraceful business tactic.  From the Jerusalem Post:

El Al reached out to the travel agent community last month, requesting hard information on the frequent fliers of several airlines.

Their request was simple: “Send us your list of frequent fliers on the following airlines: British Airways, Continental, Delta, Lufthansa and Turkish Air. Send us their ID number, mailing address, cell phone number, email address, and birth date. Send us their complete travel plans rom 2008, indicating to where they flew with dates and cities.”

Now to be fair to El Al, the airline made it a competition among the travel agent community. The agent who sent the most names could win big money – $1,000.

The story was picked up quickly by international frequent flyer communityThe general sentiment was that El Al was “Doing business the Israeli way”. And that link went out to 190,000 FlyerTalk subscribers. Just when our PR machine was recovering from an accused rapist President, a war that BBC did not find to their liking and a Prime Minister under investigation for more shady dealings than Spiro Agnew and Richard Nixon put together.

I guess the marketing guys forgot to ask the lawyers for their opinion beforehand (hey, at $300/hour can you blame them?) but the lawyers did put an end to this plan.

Hats off to:

1. The lawyers

2. The travel agents for not cooperating (they would have lost their licence)

3. Turkish Airlines (and others) for not making a shwarma out of ElAl’s management.

4. The Jerusalem Post for reporting this, and

5. You, for reading my blog and for using TripCart’s Road Trip Planner to pick up some New York City family vacation ideas for the summer.
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Discount Orlando Disney Tickets from UK Website

Yes, you read that right – contributed by an avid reader who just bought 77 days of disney!

Getting discounts on Disney Orlando tickets are almost impossible. Prior to this post we knew of two ways – 1) Be a Florida resident and 2) Spend a day in a time share presentation (and a lifetime getting out of it). Now the third:



Seven Day park hopper adult ticket is $328 on their US site and 219 GBP on their UK site, which is equal to $306 at the pathetic rate of 1 GBP = $1.40 ( a few weeks ago). So, monitor Forex 24/7 and save yourself  some money in these recessionary times.  No need to monitor the Euro or the Canadian Dollar – they only sell tickets in dollars and pounds (maybe Yen, also).

Also note that not all types of passes are offered on both sites.
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El AL Nonstop to Brazil, South America

ElAl just GRU! (GRU is code for Sao Paulo, Brasil)

Starting May 2, ElAl flies 3 time a week non-stop to Sao Paulo.

Through interline agreements, passengers can continue on to most main South American destinations. That means you have one ticket and your bags are checked all the way through. It is not a code share.

SCHEDULE – Flights leave Israel on Monday, Wednesday and Saturday evenings arriving early the following morning. Returning flights leave Brasil on Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday evening (715p) arriving in Israel the next day at 310p. (Schedule is similar to TLV-JFK-TLV).

COACH PRICE – $1000 to Rio and Sao Paulo, $1100 to most other destinations.

FREQUENT FLYER MILES -120,000 American Airline miles will get you an economy seat to Sao Paulo, Chile or Peru on ElAl.  ElAl Matmid members flying economy class earn between 65 and 250 points one way, depending on type of ticket.  That’s the same as flights to Los Angeles.

The flight is one of ElAl’s longest at 14.5 hours. The following will be the route in the New Middle East – but until Libya and Chad are willing to have us  in their airspace the routing is a bit longer, via Spain.


Finally – it is interesting that the flight is aimed at the religious pilgrim market originating in Brazil. Another notable entry in this field is Travelujah.
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The Old “Western Union Hold” Trick

This is a good one – I  just discovered it in the blogosphere. My readers are invited to try it out to see if it really helps.

The problem

Booking flights online often require immediate purchase. Buy it or lose it.

The solution is – WESTERN UNION

Scroll down for this amazing, life changing discovery, also known as “The Stealth Hold”


Book the tickets online and when it comes time to pay – place reservation on hold for CASH payment. AA’s website explains how. Continental works as well and I guess most airlines have a similar process.

How do you pay cash for a ticket booked online? Western Union. You get 24 hours with your reservation (and fare!) guaranteed. Now, unless you are a Bangladeshi worker stranded in Dubai or a world class money launderer (off to a Long Island romantic getaway) or Ehud Olmert, you won’t be hauling envelopes of cash to the nearby Western Union office.

What you will be doing is call the airline (within 24 hours) and tell them you decided to pay by credit card after all. You have succeeded in buying time. Time to:

  • Decide if that is what you want to do
  • Wait to see if fares change

This technique is also good to speak to an agent without paying the fee that often comes with that privilege. And to get the online booking mile bonus.

Summing up – the “Steath Hold” works by

  1. Booking the flight online
  2. Selecting the “pay by cash” or “place the reservation on hold” option
  3. Recording the record locator code (PNR)
  4. Call within 24 hours (may vary) to pay by Credit Card

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Shocking Media Reports about Commuter Airline Safety


UPDATE – May 12 – Full 3407 Buffalo FAA Transcript released – here.

In light of last weeks tragic crash of a Continental Connection Dash 8 near Buffalo, I decided to tackle the issue of  commuter airline safety. First, the good news:

  • The planes themselves have good safety records. They may be claustrophobic and bounce around a lot, but they are as safe as the big (Bar Refaeli painted) jets. This was the first crash of a Dash 8.
  • Turboprop planes are a key part of the hub and spoke model of modern air travel and are held to the same high standards as the big jets.

That’s about all I could say on the positive side. The fact is that there have been 7 fatal crashes of incidents involving US commuter airlines in this decade, alone. Fasten your seat belts and read:

  • The big airlines kind of outsource these flights to companies that may not live up to the reputation of the Delta’s, American’s, etc. of the industry. Pinnacle Airlines crashed 3 turboprops since 2000, including Continental Connection Flight 3407 .  You might not be aware that these brand names are often Pinnacle Airlines, or its subsidiaries (including Colgan Air)  flights:
    • Northwest Airlink
    • Delta Connection
    • Continental Connection
    • US Airways Express
    • American Connection
  • The pilots may not be as good in a field where experience and disciple count:
    • They may be inexperienced – Capt. Marvin D. Renslow had only 110 hours flying time on the Dash 8.
    • They may be overworked –   In his 3 1/2 years at Colgan, Capt. Renslow flew the maximum number of hours allowed.
    • They seem to be underpaid –  The New York Post reported that Capt. Renslow was moonlighting as a part-time produce stocker at a Tampa, Florida market.
    • They are often entry-level.  First officer Rebbecca Shaw, the more experienced (on Dash-8) pilot in the cockpit,  graduated high school in 2002. Sully, by comparison, has 40 years of experience and was a US Air Force Academy graduate and top flier in his class. He landed a fully loaded Airbus A320 in the Hudson River.
    • Have you heard about  Captain Jesse Rhodes and First Officer Peter Cesarz?  –  pilots of Pinnacle Airlines flight 3701, operating as Northwest Airlink , who “decided to have a little fun” and see how high their plane could go. They did. At 41,000 feet the engines flamed-out. Then they lied to air traffic controllers trying to find them a place to land. They crashed and died. No one else was on the plane.
  • The airline whose name is painted on the plane accepts only limited responsibility. Continental says that “it left safety oversight to the F.A.A”.  And the F.A.A. sited Colgan Air six times in as many years for maintenance or operational violations. So much for Continental’s “due diligence”

I would bet that at least some of that was surprising and even troubling.


With over 20% of all passenger boardings on commuter planes and with some regional airports  served only by commuters, TLV2JFK readers end up on these flights from time to time. Since each and every reader of this blog is dear to us – consider avoiding these airlines, if possible. Besides not flying to hick towns, we suggest looking carefully at the flight you are booking.

For the major airlines, commuter flights are generally those with high numbers, but not always. High numbers can also mean codeshares or special flights. Here is the best list of flights that are commuter flights that I could come up with:

United – 2830 – 3899, 5280 – 8099

Delta – 4365 – 6949, 7755 – 7829

Continental – 1200 – 1299, 2000 – 3159, 3180 – 4049, 4750 – 5993, 7425 – 8059, 8635 – 8960, 9491 – 9595 (whew!)

Finally, I apologize in advance if I hurt a billion dollar industry with my very limited knowledge of aviation. And I did not mean any disrespect for the dead. All I did was read a few newspaper articles, and flyertalk. And share my feelings.

And, if anyone knows why Continental flights 4950 – 4999 are reserved for SNCF French Rail, please do let me know!
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