News Flight Geek of the Week – Dario Villanueva-Ablanedo

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Flight Geek of the Week – Dario Villanueva-Ablanedo

Introducing the flight search geeks that make Skyscanner work

Introducing the flight search geeks that make Skyscanner work

**1. What do you do at Skyscanner?**
I’m part of the operations team, so it’s all about behind-the-scenes work to keep the site up and running, extending coverage and making sure prices are bang on.

2. What kind of flight geek are you?
Visualization Geek. I love making pretty pictures out of data (and all the math that comes with that) check out if you don’t know what I’m talking about.

3. What best generally describes your travel style?
I’m a spur of the moment kind of person so if I see something going on somewhere, such as a music festival or another big event I’ll book right away and fly off. Otherwise I just check for good deals and buy in advance although I might end up not going… (I once wasted a 12 quid flight to Budapest because of a rescheduled exam…)

4. What’s your ideal holiday?
Definitely Mexico. I went there a few years ago and it’s the best place in the world. It’s warm, the people speak my language (Spanish), beaches are great and Corona comes in one litre bottles.

5. Who’s your ideal travel companion?
The Lonely Planet guides are all I need, either that or friends.

6. Do you fly with children?
No, I don’t have any.

7. How do you decide where you want to go?
It all depends on what’s going on or who is in the place, and of course the price of the flight makes a big difference.

8. How do you decide when you want to go?
It’s based on the price of the ticket mainly. My work is very flexible in terms of holidays!

9. What annoys you most about planning holidays?
My friends are quite useless at reserving their tickets so it wouldn’t be the first time a whole trip falls down because they left it to the last minute and the prices become too expensive.

10. What are you doing in your job at Skyscanner to sort that?
Soon we’ll be able to share Skyscanner fares on social networks such as Facebook, which should make it easier for people to get round to reserving their tickets

11. What’s your favourite thing about the Skyscanner site?
The ability of just browsing all the available flights from a given city. It is great when planning a weekend away on a tight budget!

12. What’s your dream feature?
It would be nice to have the European high speed rail network nailed, as well as alternative forms of transport. It’d be great because most train ticket sites are horrible to use at the moment.

13. Favourite websites apart from Skyscanner and why?
Google reader – it’s a fantastic way to keep up with all the news, blogs, webcomics and even gumtree; as things get updated. – I sometimes find myself just reading Wikipedia. It’s amazing how far a non-profit organisation has managed to take the idea of collating all human knowledge in one freely accessible, searchable and beautifully curated place.

14. What’s the geekiest thing about you? Your secret geek shame?
I can play the Super Mario World tune on the guitar. I also used to play a lot of D&D. But that isn’t shameful, it’s FUN! Honestly, I don’t think anyone should be ashamed of being a geek.

I’m also massively into cars (my dad’s fault!) and F1 (which has been coined the most boring sport by literally everyone in the world). Ah and I’m a trained snake catcher. Yes, that was a real activity at my school in India – people would call me if a snake or scorpion or anything else poisonous was found and I would deal with it.

15. Worst travel experience?
I went to high school in India. On one trip we went to the lower Indian Himalayas where one of my mates fell off a snowy cliff onto a road and splintered his spine.

He couldn’t move and we didn’t have mobile phones. There was no chance of getting an ambulance up there. We ended up putting him in a truck coming from China which was filled with Tibetan refugees and men with AK47s. Everything turned out fine in the end, but I feared for his life a couple of times.

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