Apolo Ohno

Travel contests: you can’t win if you don’t play

Traveling is expensive. Especially if you want to eat and sleep when you get somewhere.

So we’ll start the week off with two contests you many want to enter to help subsidize an adventure.

AirTran Airways has a Facebook-linked sweepstakes encouraging students to become a “Facebook creeper,” which they describe as someone who “crawls Facebook, obsessively checking the content of other people’s profiles.” (That does sound sort of creepy)

The airline has set up the AirTran U Creeper page and is giving away one round trip flight per week  through the end of November 2010.  Here are the details about the AirTran Airways “creeper” contest.

Not a creeper? If you or someone you know is under 23 years old – in college or not – keep in mind that AirTran has a program that offers cheap standby tickets year-round.

[For more details about this and other student airfare deals see the article I wrote last September for MSNBC.com: Travel Discounts for the College-Bound ]

And, here’s one for fans of Hawaii and Olympic medal-winning speed skater Apolo Anton Ohno.

Alaska Airlines is running a contest for a 4-night/5 day Hawaiian vacation (for two) on Maui. And yes, Ohno will join you at the luau. .  The contest runs through April 15th and you can get lots of extra entries by connecting through social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook. Enter the Follow Apolo to Hawaii contest here.

Good luck! And if you win, please send us some souvenirs.

Get ready to “Apolo-ize” yourself at SEA and PDX

Are you getting excited about the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver?

The folks at Alaska Airlines are.

Today (Tuesday, February 2, 2010), airline representatives will be at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA) and Portland International Airport (PDX) asking passengers to help cheer on speed skater and Pacific Northwest native Apolo Ohno by “Apolo-izing” themselves with free stick-on Apolo Ohno ‘soul patches.’

And don’t worry if you’re not planning to be at either of those airports on Tuesday.

Like the folks pictured above, you can go on-line and “Apolo-ize’ yourself anytime with the handy Apolo-ize tool.

Alaska Airlines unveils an Apolo Ohno plane

Alaska Air Apolo Ono

Seattle is pretty proud of Apolo Anton Ohno, who began his speed-skating career here when he was just 14 and went on to win numerous world and national championships and five Olympic medals.  (Oh yeah, he was also on the Dancing with the Stars TV show.)

Now he’s getting ready for the 2010 Vancouver Olympics games.

To cheer him on, Alaska Airlines has painted one of its Boeing 737-800 with a giant image of Ohno and, during the unveiling yesterday at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, handed out Ohno trading card, copies of Ohno’s signature bandana, and press-on faux facial hair (in honor of Ohno’s infamous “soul patch.”) .

Sadly, I missed that gala event, but like everyone else I can now “Follow Apolo” on a special web site that will track his progress.

Alaska Airlines big OHNO