There is no one better to lead off this section, The Globetrotters, than @MrScottEddy, as he is known on social media where he is the world’s most popular travel personality. Scott epitomizes a Globetrotter. In fact, he is the star of the new Lifetime television series VideoGlobetrotter, which premiered May 2020.
Scott Eddy has taken somewhat of a circuitous route to arrive at his current designation as one of the top travel influencers in the world. A Forbes Magazine profile stated that Scott Eddy “is consistently rated as one of the top five luxury travel influencers in the world.” Yet, travel wasn’t even Scott’s first career, although he traveled quite a bit with his family in his youth. I asked Scott to take me back to the route he took that culminated in his current standing in the industry and his own television show.
Scott was born in Michigan. Scott’s father’s side of the family was American. His mother’s parents were from Lebanon, and then moved to Jamaica to be entrepreneurs, and Scott’s mom was raised in Jamaica. Scott’s father, who was in law enforcement, first raised the family in Michigan where he was a state trooper for 11 years, and then moved them to Florida where he was a Fort Lauderdale police officer for 11 years. So, growing up all of Scott’s travels were either to Michigan, or in the Caribbean to see his family on his mother’s side. Consequently, the Caribbean travel enabled Scott to do a fair amount of cruising as a child.
“Back in the old days when Carnival Celebration, SeaScape, and NCL were all leaving out of Fort Lauderdale, it was super easy to do cruising to the Bahamas, Jamaica, Mexico; those three or four days, sometimes we would do a week—it was very cost-effective travel for a family. It wasn’t a big family—my sister, parents and me—we weren’t a big family but costs add up and we weren’t wealthy; we only had one salary. My dad was a cop and my mom didn’t work. So affordable cruising was a good way to go.”
While certainly those experiences cruising beginning at about 10 years old perhaps laid the foundation for this globetrotter to see the world, they did not spark a motivation in Scott to pursue a travel career as he entered the work force. In fact, a travel career was nowhere on the horizon for Scott. The script for Scott’s life was that he was supposed to follow in his dad’s footsteps.
“My middle school and high school was familiarity with the police station. I went on ride-a-longs, learned to administer a polygraph exam when I was 12. I took my driver’s license test in a police car. I was destined to graduate from high school, enter the police academy, become a cop, and retire as one. That was the life plan. Three weeks before my graduation from high school, my father was killed in the line of duty. He was a detective, and was flying to Tallahassee to get a confession from a suspect who was already in jail. On the way back to Fort Lauderdale, there were some fires in the Everglades, a lot of smoke, and as the plane turned towards the commuter airport, it went down in a tailspin. Changed my life forever; went from having a perfect childhood, about to become a cop, to not knowing what I wanted to do but not wanting to be a cop anymore.”
On somewhat of a whim Scott moved overseas. He ended up living in Europe and Asia for the ensuing 17 years. Scott made the move with about as much forethought as he did when starting a career as a stockbroker. And, just as he learned sales as a stockbroker, a skill that would serve him well, the move abroad was a fateful one that introduced Scott to a new skill set that would change his life.
“My friend’s friend was an ex-pat living in Thailand. My friend said to me. ‘Bro you’re 29; you’ve never been to Europe, never been to Asia. What’s wrong with you?’ So, I bought a two-week ticket to Bangkok, and after four days I just could not imagine leaving there. The people were like the finest people in the world. I couldn’t imagine coming back to the US where everybody is so…entitled. I just…it really changed my life. I ended up living in Bangkok for 11 years. While living in Bangkok, I started one of the first digital travel and tourism marketing agencies in Southeast Asia, and it remained one of the biggest ones in the region for five years. After selling the agency and spending some time in Europe while building my personal brand, I now travel full-time, while building digital strategies, speaking at conferences, creating video packages and consulting for the world of luxury travel.”
Between Asia and then Europe after that, Scott lived abroad over 17 years. Today Scott lives—well, everywhere. I ask Scott, “where are you based?” Before he could answer, I said facetiously, “the world, right?” He told me, “That’s actually accurate! I technically don’t have a home. I rent a room from a friend to keep my clothes, but I literally travel full-time. And I love it this way. Most people they want a house. I just want to keep going; I love it. I think it is the greatest thing in the world. It’s fuel for me. I got rid of my things a long time ago. I own nothing…I don’t have a bed, couch, TV.”
I responded incredulously, “No television, and you are about to launch a television show?”
Read the rest of Scott’s story in Cruising Interrupted, Christmas 2020.
I imagine that for many cruisers, the notion of “living the life” on the ocean--being personally served virtually around the clock filet mignon, lobster, and chocolate covered strawberries, drinking martinis, fine wine, and champagne, relaxing and luxuriating in suite accommodations with an unparalleled view of the ocean from your veranda on a six-star cruise line—is an occasional fantasy. A relatively small percentage of cruisers get to experience some aspects of this on their luxury cruises. That was Doris Vasconcellos-Bernstein and Doug Bernstein’s experience around the clock for 12 straight days. Sounds glorious, except Doris and Doug had no input to this real life fantasy except whether to order Lemongrass Beef Nam Tok Nua, or Lobster Thermidor, or Milk Fed Veal Escalope. And, it took place at a time that outside of Doris and Doug’s suite on Silversea Cruises Silver Shadow—from which they could not leave—the world was grappling with a raging pandemic.
.......We came back to the ship to have lunch. Before we left the cabin to go to a restaurant, the Captain made an announcement over the PA system: someone had been taken off the ship sick and they had to follow some international protocols and asked us to stay for the moment in our cabins.”
That “for the moment” became 12 days. It became obvious that the “moment” was going to turn into something longer when shortly thereafter Silver Shadow Captain Gennaro Arma directed all guests to immediately return to their room and not leave. Doris and Doug never again saw any part of the Silver Shadow beyond their cabin until they were led off to be flown home. At that point, little did the guests
realize that not only were they confined to their cabins, but that the Silver Shadow would not be departing Recife that night en route to their next destination of Fortaleza, Brazil. Pending test results for the passenger who was taken off the ship with a cough, fever, and respiratory symptoms, Silver Shadow was held at Recife
Port. Port management even prohibited discharge of Silver Shadow’s garbage. Furthermore, the pier that the ship was docked on was ordered isolated.
Two days later, Royal Caribbean, Silversea Cruises parent company, released a statement to the media: "Two guests aboard the Silver Shadow have been medically disembarked in Recife, Brazil, and one has tested positive for COVID-19." The 79-year-old man who tested positive died a couple of weeks later in a
Brazil hospital. The second person removed tested negative.
It was not clear to the Silver Shadow guests when Captain Arma made his directive, of the extent to which the Brazilian authorities had exerted control over the situation. At the time, Brazil had reported 37 cases of COVID-19 and zero deaths since the outbreak began. It would become a lot clearer in the ensuing
couple of days.....
Read the full story of Trapped In Paradise in Cruising Interrupted, Christmas 2020!