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The BBC’s North America editor Jon Sopel talks about flying on Air Force One, why Britons can expect a warm welcome in the U.S and why his favourite city there is Washington DC

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Daily Mail
Daily Mail
 2021-03-04
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Jon Sopel checks into our travel Q&A

This week the BBC's North America editor, Jon Sopel, checks into our travel Q&A.

He talks about travelling on Air Force One with Obama, Trump and Biden, his love of Washington DC

MOST MEMORABLE HOLIDAY?

Visiting Kenya with our children. My wife and I honeymooned there and thought it would be wonderful to return with them when they were grown up. It certainly was.

EARLIEST HOLIDAY MEMORY?

Going to New York on a family holiday when I was seven or eight. My eyes popped out of my head at the skyscrapers and the size of the cars and sandwiches. Everything seemed so vibrant, noisy and colourful.

FAVOURITE CITY?

Washington DC, where I’ve lived for the past seven years. It’s an elegant city, with lovely architecture — no building is taller than the Capitol — and I particularly like the Georgetown area, where I’m based.

FAVOURITE RESTAURANT IN WASHINGTON DC?

If you want somewhere brash that is popular with the Washington power elite, head for Café Milano. But my favourite neighbourhood restaurant is Georgetown’s Chez Billy Sud.

HOW MANY U.S. STATES HAVE YOU VISITED?

About 40. However, I’m still desperate to experience Wyoming and Montana.

EVER TRAVELLED ON AIR FORCE ONE?

Yes, with Obama, Trump and Biden. It feels like being in a classy hotel that hasn’t been updated in recent years.

EVER BEEN PULLED OVER BY U.S. COPS?

Once, in Virginia, for speeding. I put on my best Englishman act and apologised. Remember to keep your hands at the ‘ten to two’ position on the steering wheel so they can see you’re not grabbing for a gun.

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'It feels like being in a classy hotel that hasn’t been updated in recent years' - Jon Sopel's verdict on Air Force One
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Jon said his favourite city is Washington DC, where he's lived for the past seven years. Pictured is Georgetown 

ANY TIPS FOR BRITONS GOING TO THE U.S.?

You’ll be struck by how warm and welcoming Americans are, except maybe in New York City. Remember, too, that a British accent goes a long way.

HOTEL FROM HELL?

A woman came to my door at a Vegas hotel. I don’t think she was interested in my personality.

DREAM DESTINATION?

I’d love to see the Canadian Rockies, the Galapagos islands and the gorillas in Rwanda.

I’ve booked a family trip in the South of France in late August.

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