Search found 358 matches

by oxothuk
Thu Dec 13, 2018 11:06 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [Germany] New to the site - something I've been looking for long time. How to proceed?
Replies: 10
Views: 832

Re: [Germany] New to the site - something I've been looking for long time. How to proceed?

The only way to “amass a fortune” is through active participation in a successful business. There may (or may not) be more opportunities to do so in the US vs. Germany. If your goals are more modest - i.e., middle class prosperity - then I think you can do that just as well in Germany as the US. The...
by oxothuk
Tue Dec 11, 2018 10:27 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Participant Interests (Not) Aligned with Medicare Advantage Plans?
Replies: 7
Views: 520

Re: Participant Interests (Not) Aligned with Medicare Advantage Plans?

Competition among Advantage plans is the way this misalignment is corrected, just as Vanguard put pressure on the rest of the financial services industry

I have an Advantage plan with Kaiser and have been very pleased. No difference at all from before I went on Medicare.
by oxothuk
Mon Nov 26, 2018 11:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Robot Vacuum Cleaner?
Replies: 62
Views: 4807

Re: Robot Vacuum Cleaner?

RootSki wrote:
Mon Nov 26, 2018 8:48 am
I need one too. I'm looking for something that can re-charge it's self and has virtual mapping that you can create virtual walls with their app.

Bonus points if it can be used with 2 separate floor-plans (upstairs and down).
Neato D7 would check all your boxes
by oxothuk
Sun Nov 25, 2018 11:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Planning a trip to Iceland with kids
Replies: 12
Views: 1382

Re: Planning a trip to Iceland with kids

Obviously it would disappoint if you're looking for Hong Kong. Indeed. Iceland natives travel abroad just to have the experience of what it feels like to be in a crowd. My wife and I have been to Iceland 5 times (during stopovers enroute to Europe). I recommend taking some kind of bus tour on the d...
by oxothuk
Sat Nov 24, 2018 6:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much of SS goes into MAGI?
Replies: 22
Views: 1799

Re: How much of SS goes into MAGI?

dcdowden wrote:
Sat Nov 24, 2018 6:31 pm
For the purposes of determining IRMAA, I believe 100% of your Social Security is included in MAGI
All the googling I have done says otherwise.
by oxothuk
Sat Nov 24, 2018 5:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How many vacations per year is optimal?
Replies: 53
Views: 4698

Re: How many vacations per year is optimal?

Since you fly to Hawaii and your limit is 5 hours, I assume you're on the west coast. For Europe, you might consider breaking up the trip. Fly to an east coast hub, stay overnight there so you can sleep in a real bed. Then, take a flight out the next day. You're still looking at over 5 hours, thoug...
by oxothuk
Thu Nov 22, 2018 6:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What financial information do you share with your family and relatives?
Replies: 112
Views: 9717

Re: What financial information do you share with your family and relatives?

I never give any specifics on income or NW (nor am I ever asked). I can guess those figures for my children and siblings to about +/- 40% accuracy, and I assume they could do the reverse.

I do sometimes give general financial advice (primarily repeating what I've learned on BH)
by oxothuk
Tue Nov 20, 2018 1:03 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Where do you get your information? Favorite blogs/sites/resources?
Replies: 25
Views: 2614

Re: Where do you get your information? Favorite blogs/sites/resources?

fujiters wrote:
Mon Nov 19, 2018 4:58 pm
Every so often, kitces.com will have an astoundingly informative blog post.
+1
by oxothuk
Tue Nov 13, 2018 12:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Global Entry Turnaround Time ?
Replies: 28
Views: 2129

Re: Global Entry Turnaround Time ?

If you don't get Global Entry in time for your trip, consider Mobile Passport. It's a free app that also expedites passage through US Customs and can be used at 25 major US airports. That’s what we use. Using MP is a bit faster than GE because you can fill it out as soon as your phone gets cell ser...
by oxothuk
Thu Nov 08, 2018 3:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: tipping for grocery delivery
Replies: 53
Views: 4093

Re: tipping for grocery delivery

It takes enough thinking to decide what to tip taxi drivers and restaurant waiters. Avoiding the emotional and intellectual effort to decide on tips for in-person deliveries is a good reason for me to not use these services. +1 This also reduces my inclination to eat out in restaurants, use the shu...
by oxothuk
Wed Oct 31, 2018 11:34 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Planning first international trip - London/Paris
Replies: 74
Views: 4158

Re: Planning first international trip - London/Paris

mrb09 wrote:
Wed Oct 31, 2018 8:48 am
- Get an Oyster card
Not necessary if you have a Visa card which supports contactless payments. Costco Visa is one such card. - look for the Wifi symbol on the back of whatever card you have.
by oxothuk
Wed Oct 31, 2018 11:03 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anybody use CenturyLink for internet service?
Replies: 25
Views: 1682

Re: Anybody use CenturyLink for internet service?

I’ve had CL DSL for 18 years. Started out as 1.5Mbps, then 20 Mbps, and now 40Mbps. Service has been very good MOST of the time. I had a couple of incidents at 20 Mbps where line quality degraded and it would go down multiple times per day. No problems since I upgraded to 40 Mbps - they provide this...
by oxothuk
Wed Oct 17, 2018 6:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cancun in a few weeks
Replies: 52
Views: 3891

Re: Cancun in a few weeks

Flymore wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 7:44 am
Do I need pesos for the bus?

thanks
Yes, and preferably in small notes or coins.
by oxothuk
Thu Oct 11, 2018 8:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Which one: Lyft or Uber?
Replies: 57
Views: 4332

Re: Which one: Lyft or Uber?

I use Uber exclusively although I have the Luft app too just in case. Two reasons. 1. Uber was the pioneer and without it maybe the whole concept wouldn't exist as they fought all the tough battles. 2. Lyft has taken political positions and emailed me about them and I don't like anything political ...
by oxothuk
Thu Oct 11, 2018 2:24 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice on Three-Night English Road Trip
Replies: 30
Views: 2123

Re: Advice on Three-Night English Road Trip

Perhaps you are well aware of the difficulty in driving on the other side of the road especially in dense urban areas. It can be nerve racking and exhausting with lots of opportunities to miss exits and turns especially in heavy traffic. After having driven a lot of miles and weeks in "other side" ...
by oxothuk
Fri Oct 05, 2018 2:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice on Three-Night English Road Trip
Replies: 30
Views: 2123

Re: Advice on Three-Night English Road Trip

Maybe you could turn in your car and spend your last night at Moreton-in-Marsh in the Cotswolds. From there you could make train connections in the morning to Heathrow for your return flight. One way car rentals within the same country are pretty reasonable in Europe. There are lots of pretty villag...
by oxothuk
Tue Oct 02, 2018 9:22 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New Apartment, city noise
Replies: 43
Views: 3371

Re: New Apartment- Moved from the city to country

I can't imagine anyone, hearing a car alarm, think "I've got to go check that out. Maybe someone is stealing a car!". I would pay extra for NOT having a panic alarm on my car. I find the alarm very easy to set off by mistake just having the keys in my pocket. And as you noted they are useless for t...
by oxothuk
Mon Oct 01, 2018 4:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Failed hard drive(?) data recovery
Replies: 59
Views: 5176

Re: Failed hard drive(?) data recovery

These scenarios are where Apple computers really shine. Their backup process (Time Machine) is integrated into the OS in such a way that a failed hard disk is no big deal. Or migrating to a new computer, for that matter. After 25 years, I'm really amazed Redmond hasn't found the time to put similar ...
by oxothuk
Tue Sep 25, 2018 6:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New Zealand - Bucket list trip
Replies: 34
Views: 3781

Re: New Zealand - Bucket list trip

Watty wrote:
Tue Sep 25, 2018 12:31 pm
I am not sure how well a cell phone GPS would work since in many areas you will not have a cell phone signal.
Offline Google Maps solve that problem. The only thing you don’t get with offline maps is real time traffic info (and there’s no traffic in NZ anyway)
by oxothuk
Wed Sep 05, 2018 12:47 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Experience With No Car? (Uber/Lyft)
Replies: 47
Views: 4566

Re: Experience With No Car? (Uber/Lyft)

dm200 wrote:
Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:33 am
I wish there were practical, low/no risk way(s) of car sharing for those of us that want/need a car (or cars) - but have low mileage usage. It might work if we had close family nearby - but we do not.
You might want to see if Zipcar operates in your city.
by oxothuk
Sat Sep 01, 2018 3:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The twenty dollar rule
Replies: 44
Views: 3970

Re: The twenty dollar rule

What the OP meant to say was that both he and his spouse report to each other before spending $20 on anything. The rules are the same for both of them. I think that's kind of ridiculous but whatever works for them and is fair to both is fine. My wife and I have always worked like this, but (a) the ...
by oxothuk
Mon Aug 20, 2018 8:26 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Planning a December trip (Colorado/Midwest)
Replies: 11
Views: 800

Re: Planning a December trip (Colorado/Midwest)

You have a two day drive to get to Colorado from IL, same on the way back. Daylight for driving is short. Doesn’t leave time to see anything once you get to CO.

There is also the risk of a snowstorms when driving across the Midwest at that time of year
by oxothuk
Sun Aug 19, 2018 12:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New Zealand
Replies: 17
Views: 1656

Re: New Zealand

I visited NZ in 2017 with my wife and two other family members. 3 weeks on the South Island was nowhere near enough time to see it all. We really enjoyed walking the Milford Track. We did this with Ultimate Hikes - a bit pricey but well worth it. For most of the rest of the trip we stayed in B&Bs we...
by oxothuk
Thu Aug 09, 2018 2:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do Airlines measure checked baggages?
Replies: 33
Views: 2338

Re: Do Airlines measure checked baggages?

adamthesmythe wrote:
Thu Aug 09, 2018 9:53 am
This comes down to "do you feel lucky."
And if you get called to meet the letter of the law (their law) your options are pretty poor. Pay a hefty oversize bag fee? Throw away stuff you’ve paid for? Probably not enough time left to haul it back to your car in in the long term parking lot.
by oxothuk
Thu Aug 02, 2018 2:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hiking vacation in November - any recomendations?
Replies: 35
Views: 2239

Re: Hiking vacation in November - any recomendations?

You might consider a hiking trip in southern Spain/Portugal or the Canary Islands. You can get relatively cheap flights to London in November, and there are several budget airlines you can take to these areas from London. We've used this company before and been very pleased. http://www.inntravel.co.uk
by oxothuk
Tue Jul 31, 2018 5:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do You Purchase "Medical Evacuation Insurance" When You Travel?
Replies: 181
Views: 10751

Re: Do You Purchase "Medical Evacuation Insurance" When You Travel?

Medical evacuation insurance(Medjet) is the only kind of travel insurance I DO buy.

My US health insurance will reimburse me for emergency and urgent care while traveling. Other travel risks - flight cancellation, lost luggage, etc - are things I can self-insure.
by oxothuk
Sun Jul 29, 2018 12:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dual language vs Traditional Public School
Replies: 23
Views: 1385

Re: Dual language vs Traditional Public School

My son attended a bilingual school for 3 of his elementary school years. Worked out very well.
by oxothuk
Tue Jul 24, 2018 1:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Europe travel Qs [Questions]
Replies: 63
Views: 3930

Re: Europe travel Qs

We used the subway a lot, and on one trip as we came out and headed up the stairs I mindlessly threw my ticket in a garbage bin. Just a floor up next to the exit we encountered 2 uniformed officers checking tickets. I hadn't realized I was supposed to keep it until exiting. On the other hand, it IS...
by oxothuk
Thu Jul 19, 2018 11:53 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Planning a trip to France in June 2019 - ADvice ?
Replies: 28
Views: 2152

Re: Planning a trip to France in June 2019 - ADvice ?

Restrict yourself to two or three “base locations” and spend 3-5 nights at each one. Use trains to move between your bases. You will probably want a rental car for day trips around each base location (except Paris). Spend the night after you arrive and the night before you leave in your arrival/depa...
by oxothuk
Wed Jun 27, 2018 12:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home Theater PC Uses?
Replies: 15
Views: 1422

Re: Home Theater PC Uses?

I have an HTPC running MythTV which I’ve been using for over a dozen years.

Primary uses are as a DVR for OTA TV and to watch DVDs from my hard disk library.
by oxothuk
Tue Jun 26, 2018 1:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Reason for Airlines horrible ticket policy
Replies: 32
Views: 2368

Re: Reason for Airlines horrible ticket policy

Southwest does have a”stealth” change fee for last minute changes. In that case the “wanna get away” fares are not available; you have to buy the higher fares they charge for non-advance purchase.
by oxothuk
Fri Jun 22, 2018 8:56 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to get cheap flights?
Replies: 18
Views: 1238

Re: How to get cheap flights?

This is one of the reasons we usually fly Southwest. Any ticket on SW is really just a "call option" to fly at that price. If the price goes down, we exchange the tickets for new ones at the lower price and receive the balance as a credit which is good for one year. We fly often enough that using th...
by oxothuk
Tue Jun 12, 2018 3:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Maui Hikes
Replies: 11
Views: 758

Re: Maui Hikes

Waihe’e Ridge trail is very nice. It’s a bit steep at times, but never unsafe and you don’t have to go the whole distance to get some great views.

Trailhead is just a few miles north of Kahului.
by oxothuk
Tue May 29, 2018 8:49 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Scotland in 2019
Replies: 16
Views: 1540

Re: Scotland in 2019

Once you leave Edinburgh you will really want a car IMHO. No point going to Skye UNLESS you spend one or more nights there. Check out the “walkhighlands” web site for hiking recommendations. There are options for all levels. Loch Ness is just a lake, but Urquhart Castle on the banks of LN is quite i...
by oxothuk
Wed May 23, 2018 11:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New 2018 Nissan Leaf (with 150 mi range)
Replies: 52
Views: 5916

Re: New 2018 Nissan Leaf (with 150 mi range)

mervinj7 wrote:
Wed May 23, 2018 10:47 am
So the next question is based on estimates for future depreciation, will a 2018 Leaf SV be worth at least $8k in 3 years?
Seems likely, based on what 3 year old Leafs go for now. Given your wife's driving pattern, I would go for the purchase option.
by oxothuk
Sun May 20, 2018 3:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Rental cars in Europe
Replies: 33
Views: 2428

Re: Rental cars in Europe

I've found that one-way rentals in Europe can be quite cheap if pickup/dropoff are within the same country. If you want to drop off in a different country, then it gets MUCH more expensive. Rather than drop the car off in Zurich, it might be worthwhile for your two drivers to head back to Germany fo...
by oxothuk
Sun May 06, 2018 1:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Does it make sense to rent as a retiree?
Replies: 83
Views: 9790

Re: Does it make sense to rent as a retiree?

Another tax consideration is that the extra income from selling your home (which will fund the rent) may push you into IRMAA territory (or a higher IRMAA bracket).
by oxothuk
Fri Apr 20, 2018 6:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Factor in evaluating Physicians
Replies: 86
Views: 6089

Re: Factor in evaluating Physicians

book lover wrote:
Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:11 am
The incessant drug company advertising on T.V. gets my goat, my family Doc getting donuts or lunch not at all.
Election-season TV ads are worse.
by oxothuk
Thu Apr 19, 2018 2:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [When is going out to a restaurant worth it to you?]
Replies: 71
Views: 6489

Re: [When is going out to a restaurant worth it to you?]

Going out is worth it for us in two cases
a) high-end "dining"
b) low-end "re-fueling"

The former is usually with friends or on vacation. The latter happens occasionally, driven by circumstances. We rarely visit any mid-priced restaurants; we'd rather eat at home.
by oxothuk
Thu Apr 19, 2018 2:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Another discussion about private vs public schools?
Replies: 79
Views: 5439

Re: Another discussion about private vs public schools?

While the stereotype of private schools is that they are very selective, the reality is often quite different. The pool of parents with the means to pay is often quite small and the private school has more pressure to keep classes full to stay in business.
by oxothuk
Wed Apr 04, 2018 9:53 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Want/need some income in semi-retirement
Replies: 90
Views: 7784

Re: Want/need some income in semi-retirement

DW and I want/need about $1,000 - $1,200 per month (net) in addition to SS/pensions. A current part time income will be ending in a few months. I am in early 70's, good health, can drive. Want low stress. Ideas? I have an acquaintance (similar age to you) who drives (re-locates) cars for Enterprise...
by oxothuk
Mon Apr 02, 2018 4:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Train Tickets in London
Replies: 8
Views: 1461

Re: Train Tickets in London

If you happen to be traveling with another couple, there are substantial savings to be had by bookings as a group.
by oxothuk
Sun Apr 01, 2018 3:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Towel Warmers - worthwhile luxury or useless?
Replies: 43
Views: 4917

Re: Towel Warmers - worthwhile luxury or useless?

We often find them when traveling in Europe. They work great to help dry clothes we have washed in the sink.
by oxothuk
Wed Mar 28, 2018 12:03 pm
Forum: Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community
Topic: A lot of heavy hitters this morning
Replies: 244
Views: 23644

Re: A lot of heavy hitters this morning

triceratop wrote:
Wed Mar 28, 2018 10:50 am
I buy all of my main articles of clothing at Goodwill
I knew someone who bought all his shirts at Goodwill, wore them once or twice, and then donated them back.

Not much more expensive than sending his shirts out to the cleaner, or so he said.
by oxothuk
Mon Mar 26, 2018 12:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: New Vanguard Security Code Requirement [2FA: Two-factor authentication]
Replies: 185
Views: 14332

Re: Two- Factor Authentication at Vanguard - Update

I wish they had an in-between option for when to invoke 2FA. I don't really want to go through it for every logon, but would appreciate some extra security for any time I initiate a buy/sell/transfer transaction or any time I make a change to the account. Like others, I'd also like to see a TOTP tok...
by oxothuk
Mon Mar 26, 2018 12:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Denver to Salt Lake City
Replies: 12
Views: 1595

Re: Denver to Salt Lake City

Great Sand Dunes
Cumbres & Toltec RR
Mesa Verde
Colorado National Monument
Wine tasting in Palisade
by oxothuk
Fri Mar 16, 2018 2:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Which Day Hiking Trails Do You Recommend?
Replies: 44
Views: 3955

Re: Which Day Hiking Trails Do You Recommend?

If you like to hike, please consider trekking in Europe. Combine hiking with only a day pack on well-marked scenic trails through the best the planet has on offer and have someone else see your luggage to the next night's accommodation. We're in our 60's and have done the almost 200 mile Coast-to-C...
by oxothuk
Sun Mar 04, 2018 2:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Flying Frontier- Heads Up
Replies: 21
Views: 2834

Re: Flying Frontier- Heads Up

I love Frontier - they help keep prices in line for me on my Southwest flights
by oxothuk
Tue Feb 20, 2018 5:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security vs Nest Egg Trade-off
Replies: 16
Views: 1879

Re: Social Security vs Nest Egg Trade-off

OP did not say, but I assume that the low earner has a very low SS earnings record, such that spousal benefit provides more money than claiming on his/her own record. In his example, the "joint lifetime benefit" of delaying one year is $2880 per year. This benefit applies so long as EITHER spouse is...
by oxothuk
Mon Feb 12, 2018 12:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you think it is worth the money to travel to warm weather destinations during the winter?
Replies: 77
Views: 7650

Re: Do you think it is worth the money to travel to warm weather destinations during the winter?

I was pricing a Na Pali boat tour yesterday for our June Hawaii trip and the price was higher for the summer months because it was during their "high season". I would think Hawaii's high season was the winter months. Summer is high season for Na Pali boat tours because the seas are calmer. They don...