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From small mechanical issues to ill-timed blizzards, few of us have traveled in the past few years without running into some sort of mishap at the airport. Granted, running an airline is no easy chore, but the frustration felt when flights don’t take off as planned can seem all too real. During such moments, a sleek airport lounge can provide an oasis of luxury and calm in which to bide your time. But what about when things don’t go awry? How often do you need to visit an airport lounge to justify the cost of membership? And what tricks are there – if any – to gaining access without paying? Read more
Not long ago, New York’s Central Park Zoo said a sad farewell to one of its own: Gus the polar bear. He was a fixture at the zoo for more than 25 years and had some…well, problems. Sure, he was neurotic (like a true Manhattanite), but he was beloved by many. (It’s reported that nearly 20 million people visited him during his time at the zoo.) On a happier note, we can’t help but think about the new baby animals that draw visitors to zoos across the country each year. And let’s face it, no matter how young or old we are, it’s hard not to ‘ooh and ahh’ over a cute baby cheetah (or elephant, or snow leopard). If you’re looking for a pick-me-up, here are some new furry friends that have recently arrived at America’s zoos…
It doesn’t get much cuter than these adorable kittens. At the Memphis Zoo, a male leopard was born in July, and while he doesn’t have a name yet, the public will have a hand in picking it from seven choices. Chicago’s Brookfield Zoo also welcomed a male cub in June, and he’s set to make his public debut this month when he turns three months old. Poaching and other factors have lead the species to be listed as endangered and only about 3,500 to 7,000 exist in the wild.
When to go: While you can’t see the Memphis cub just yet (the zoo is reconfiguring the cage so there are no spaces in the caging where he could slip out), stay tuned for updates on their Facebook page. In Chicago, you’ll be able to see the newborn by the end of next week. Read more
Escape on an end-of-summer getaway, or start planning your fall and winter travel early, with this sale from Virgin America. Fly one-way, nonstop to Los Angeles, San Francisco, Las Vegas, and more. While travel for these low rates is valid for a while (August 24–December 3, 2013), booking ends on August 8, at 11:59 CT. Certain day-of-week restrictions and blackout dates from November 21–December 3, 2013 also apply. Check out some of these great fares below! Read more
A couple of weeks ago, Delta’s CEO Richard Anderson issued a rare public lashing on immigration wait times for passengers coming into the United States. Obviously, the leader of a U.S.-based airline has financial motives for wanting to get passengers off the plane and through passport control in a more efficient manner – but his rant still held a lot of truth. Immigration wait times in countries like Japan or the Netherlands are far shorter than what we face here in the United States.
For those looking to make informed decisions around their future travel plans, here’s a quick look at which airports boast the shortest wait times – and perhaps more importantly, which airports have the worst. Though we can’t guarantee you’ll miraculously breeze through immigration on your trip, at the very least, you’ll know which entry points to avoid or plan for longer layovers if you have a connection. Read more
With spring break right around the corner, now is the perfect time to plan your next adventure. Even upscale hotels are offering great rates for March and April travel, so you can stay at those luxe hotels you used to think you couldn’t afford, even during this prime travel period. From a boutique hotel in Denver to a brand-new 5-star resort in Goa, you can treat yourself to a spring break without breaking the bank. Read more
Last week I got a sneak peek at the Perot Museum of Nature and Science in Dallas, which opens to the public on December 1st.
Keeping to the “everything is bigger in Texas” mandate, the museum sits on nearly five acres and offers 180,000 square feet of exhibit space and places to play, and the result is something of a nerd’s paradise. On the prehistoric side, they’ve got several dinosaurs nonchalantly looming overhead, including an Alamosaurus (who sounds like he ought to be a Texan, but is in actuality New Mexican) that measures 85 feet tall, or in class trip parlance, is two school buses high by two school buses long.
Many more exhibits dutifully document natural history as well as earth and space, but the biggest thrills for me were on the high-tech side – which makes sense, given that the museum is named for tech company magnate (and former U.S. presidential candidate) Ross Perot, whose children helped fund the museum in his honor.
Dallas is one of America’s largest, most sprawling metropolises, and touching down there for the first time can be somewhat intimidating. If you’re sent to the heart of Texas for business, however, there’s nothing to be afraid of. In an effort to get you outside of the boardroom and into the wilds of Big D, we’re offering up two restaurants, two attractions, and one bar that you can hit with just a few extra hours between meetings.
Unlike some cities, which shove their meeting venues to the outskirts of town, Dallas’ primary convention center is located right in the middle of the action. Nestled between Union Station and City Hall, you won’t have to walk far to find good grub. Just a few blocks away sits Sonny Bryan’s Smokehouse. While in Texas, you’ll be doing yourself a disservice if you don’t have a taste of Texas-style BBQ. For the vegetarians that may be in the group, a hearty helping of green beans, sweet potatoes, and onion rings ought to fill a similar void. Dallas is chock full of chain-style BBQ eateries, but this one is a cut above. And yes, you’ll need to temporarily ignore whatever diet you’re on. Read more
Beginning June 19, customers who book early can secure dollar seats from Dallas, Houston, and San Antonio to locations like Austin and other states like Oklahoma, Tennessee, Arkansas, and Louisiana. While prices go up as the traveling date gets closer, Megabus is giving away 10,000 free seats and capping the price of its tickets at $1 during the first week of sales to promote its new service. Read more
Guests at the Ritz-Carlton, Dallas may be in for a super-luxe surprise on the pillow at turndown this year: the hotel plans to give away one Bulgari Carbon Gold watch a month to random guests who book a special package. The Suite Treasures package will always include an overnight stay in a Deluxe Suite, in-room breakfast for two, and free valet parking, as well as transportation to the Bulgari store at NorthPark Center and a personal shopping concierge experience with a Bulgari gift to take home. Book the package from June 1 through December 31 for one of seven chances to win the watch between now and the end of the year. Rates start at a cool $469/night, but the Bulgari bling is worth $2,000 so it might be worth the gamble! If you need further incentive, a portion of all proceeds will go to the North Texas Food Bank, so you can feel good about your splurge.
For general trip-planning information see our Dallas destination guide, then use our Travel Search price comparison tool to find the lowest rates and travel deals on flights, hotels, vacation packages, and more.
With summer — and school break — just around the corner, it’s time to start planning a great getaway for the whole family. These money-saving deals are suitable for a group, whether you’re taking the kids to Orlando for some theme park hopping, planning your next family reunion on a cruise, or hiding out at a Caribbean resort where little ones stay free. We found those deals and more, good for travel throughout summer and fall, starting from just $87. Book soon to lock in the best savings.
Now that we’re all trying to avoid that dreaded checked-bag fee, the maximum three-ounce allowance for carry-on liquids means that favorite perfumes and colognes might stay at home during quick trips and getaways. Rosewood Hotels & Resorts has solved this particular problem, however, with another niche butler service. After checking in at any participating Rosewood location, call up the Fragrance Butler, who will bring ten fragrances on a silver platter, free for your use.
The fragrance menu varies by location, as the scents are meant to reflect the area in which the hotel is located. You can use Tom Ford Black Orchid at the Hotel Georgia in Vancouver, Hermes Eau des Mervailles at New York’s The Carlyle, or Givenchy Dahlia Noir at The Mansion on Turtle Creek in Dallas. Fragrance Butlers are also available at Crescent Hotel in Dallas, The Mansion on Peachtree in Atlanta, the Inn of the Anasazi in Santa Fe, Rosewood Sand Hill and CordeValle in California, and Al Faisaliah Hotel and Rosewood Corniche in Saudi Arabia. With Rosewood having your olfactory needs covered, you can let your three-ounce worries waft away.
Use our Travel Search price comparison tool to the lowest rates on flights, hotels, cruises, and other travel deals.
PCWorld recently published a list of the “Top 20 Airports for Tech Travelers,” marking the first time such a comprehensive analysis of domestic airport and airline technology has been published. Research for the piece involved canvassing the 40 busiest U.S. airports and a staggering 3,300 gates to identify the industry’s ultimate tech-friendly winners (and losers). Rankings were based on accessibility to electrical outlets, USB ports, and charging stations, as well as on airport Wi-Fi quality and cell reception. PCWorld also looked at individual domestic airlines for their own tech-friendly rankings, based on technological offerings at their gates, in their planes, and on their websites. Read more
Swirling rumors of American Airlines pending bankruptcy proved true this morning, when the parent of the carrier, the AMR Corporation, filed for bankruptcy protection. The airline – the last major legacy airline in the country to file for Chapter 11 – has pledged that the filing will allow it to emerge as a stronger company, by affording it the opportunity to reduce labor costs and emerge from debt. Speculations are being made that this latest bankruptcy filing might give birth to another round of airline consolidation, considering that the bankruptcy declarations by Delta led to their teaming up with Northwest, while United’s led to a merger with Continental. So what does this all mean for you, the traveler? Well, by all accounts, not too much – it’s really the airline’s employees and stockholders that will bear the brunt of the envisioned restructuring. Read on for some Q & A on what to expect if you already have tickets or are still interested in booking a flight with AA:
The Luxury: Madonna’s cone bra, walking mannequins, and more than 120 haute couture creations take their rightful place among more than 240,000 masterpieces at Dallas’ Museum of Art this November, when the traveling Jean Paul Gaultier exhibit lands at the museum – one of only two U.S. cities to claim the showcase, dubbed “Sidewalk to the Catwalk.” To celebrate, The Joule Hotel in downtown Dallas unleashed an exclusive package that bundles museum tickets, cocktails, and other goodies into the price. Rest assured that the property itself is as fashion-forward as the exhibit: The custom-designed suites and guestrooms are each bedecked with local call-outs, such as original photographs of Dallas and Fort Worth by Bram Tihany and a direct dial on each phone to the Neiman Marcus flagship store a few doors down.
Costume ready? Party planned? What, you don’t have plans yet for Halloween? With just six days left until the gayest holiday of the year, time is ticking to get your ghoul on – especially as its being on a Monday brings a whole weekend of frights beforehand. Let us be your guide with this crib sheet of the coolest gay events from coast to coast. As for costumes, just try to avoid one of these.
CHICAGO: The city’s biggest bash is in Boystown with a parade from Belmont to Bradley on Halsted Street with plenty of boozing, main stage entertainment (Musical of the Living Dead, Chicago Fire Tribe, and more) and after-hours action in the bars and clubs. Visit NorthHalsted.com for more info.
COLUMBUS, OHIO: Held early, on Friday the 28th, The Short North Highball Halloween combines both a public costume contest and a couture contest fashion show with plenty of queer creativity, pulling in crowds of over 20,000 from throughout the Midwest; from 5pm to 1am outdoors, under and around the area’s iconic arches. Read more
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