Things to do in Taiwan when you’re jetlagged

So there’s a possibility I may return to New York for a two-week visit in September. I’ve been parsing all the available flights, and I found a fabulous deal: China Airlines, Canberra-New York, roundtrip, for under AU$1700. Understand that this is cheaper than most Sydney-Los Angeles flights. I was thrilled.
The catch? It involves a (possibly overnight) layover in Taipei, and another in Anchorage, Alaska. It then goes from Anchorage to NYC with probably another stop somewhere.
Since there is not a website that tells flight times between cities, the best I have been able to cobble together is this approximate itinerary:
Canberra-Sydney 50 minutes
Sydney-Taipei 9-10 hours
Taipei-Anchorage 18-20 hours
Anchorage-NYC 9-11 hours
Not to put too fine a point on it, that is a HOLY MOTHERFUCKING SHITLOAD of time on a plane.
I already know about Tex’s trick of disguising vodka in water bottles. And I’m told that carrying marijuana across international boundaries is frowned upon. I may have to beg the doctor for some Valium in order to survive this trip.
So, dear readers, I ask you: Should I
a) suck it up and save some dosh (more to spend when I get home); or
b) be sensible and book a more direct and expensive flight?
Any Taiwanese or Alaskan bloggers out there, please do contact me if you’d like to meet up.



  1. BigFire

    Spend the money in Taiwan. Now that you mentioned it, there is this hole in the wall noodle shop in Taipei that I would like to eat at (3 years since I’ve been there). Too bad, I simply cannot justify spending that kind of money just for a couple of bowls of really good spicy beef noodle.

  2. Patrick

    Your doctor will willingly give you some sleping pills if you explain it to him. However, if it were me, I would save a little longer.

  3. steven saporito

    Split the baby.
    Pay a bit more, get the valium, and get a connection to LA. I’ll put you up for the night.
    You can even have Tex’s room.

  4. jill uhler

    Sounds great if I was 21, in backpack mode, looking for adventure. Don’t we know better now? Save your money for a little less stress.

  5. Alan K. Henderson

    I’ve just finished the fourth volume of Will Durant’s History of Civilization. Maybe I should save the other seven for when and if I ever make a trans-Pacific flight 🙂
    I did have this fantasy of going to Tokyo for the 50th anniversary of the original Gojira, but I really need a traveling companion who speaks Japanese. No way I can Berlitz my way to semi-fluency in 3.5 months. So far all I know are “sayonara,” “mate” (pronounced “mah-tay” – brief judo experience), “domo aregato,” and “tora tora tora.” Don’t think I’ll be using the last one…

  6. yobbo

    I can add “Yamate”, “Kimochi-ii” and “Bukkake” to that list, so I think that qualifies me as a fluent speaker.

  7. Michael Jennings

    >The catch?
    No, the catch is actually that you have to fly China Airlines, which has the most horrendous safety record of just about any airline on Earth.

  8. Michael Jennings

    That said, Taipei-Alaska will take less time than that. There is no passenger aircraft in existence that can fly for 18-20 hours. 14 hour flights are quite common, but that’s about as long as they come.