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Every time I set foot in an airport I’m overtaken by the urge to look like I know what I’m doing, which is quickly followed by a desire to actually know what I’m doing. And sometimes I fail on both counts. While I’ve learned much about travel the hard way, I do try to learn from my blunders. Here now, five common mistakes that are all too easy to make at the airport, and how to avoid them. Read more
Air news lately has been a bit of a mixed bag. On the one hand, travelers fearing for their safety on board were relieved the TSA postponed the policy allowing knives on airplanes. On the other, staff reductions and flight delays means travelers will feel that relief – from the ground – for much, much longer.
The announcement to allow knives and various sporting goods on airplanes was a thorn in a lot of people’s sides, and those who opposed the measure have been heard. Read more
Unless you’ve isolated yourself on a pristine island far, far away from the reach of U.S. politics, you’ve probably heard the word “sequester” uttered a time or two over the past few weeks. Even if you aren’t totally familiar with the impact of these budgetary cuts, one thing has become crystal clear for travelers: The sequester is increasing wait times for immigration around the country. In particular, the cuts have forced TSA and other government employees working at airports to cut back on overtime and staffing, which has led to immigration lines as long as four hours in Miami. Read more
Airports: Can’t live with ‘em, can’t fly to dazzling locations across the globe without ‘em. But recently, they’ve made headlines an awful lot. We’ve collected a few choice stories from the skies this week, from good samaritans to free Wi-Fi on flights.
We’ve all been there: midway through your flight, having exhausted all your entertainment materials, you think, “Hey, now would be an excellent time to finish my whittling project.” Or start a pick-up lacrosse game. Or practice your golf swing. Whatever the case, you’ve got to fight back the urge, because all of those activities require items you’re simply not allowed to bring on an airplane. Until now.
Keeping up with the ins-and-outs of Washington politics is exhausting. But one thing travelers must keep an eye on is the approaching sequester, which, barring congressional action, goes into effect this week. Though a majority of cuts will be in other federal agencies (mostly in domestic and defense programs), the airline industry is poised to take a major hit. Here’s what you need to know as you try to figure out whether or not your flight plans must be adjusted.
Like most planes, trains, and automobiles, news in the travel world moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss a great deal, or the newest airline perk. We’ve scoured all corners of the internet to round up the most notable travel news this week, from a low-cost French rail service to speedier TSA screenings.
I, for one, have always been under the impression that celebs are constantly receiving special treatment – whether it’s being comped at a restaurant or skipping the security line at the airport. Well, as it turns out, the later is not actually true! Read more
Tuesday and Wednesday are the best days of the week to book the cheapest plane tickets, a home exchange is a tidy way to save money on lodging, and a restaurant that serves the same entree at lunch and dinner often charges less for it at lunchtime.
These are among the “greatest hits” of money-saving travel tips, bits of advice that are repeated year after year in travel journalism because they’re (often) true and always manage to find new audiences.
The nice thing about such a tip is that it can help you if you hear it at the right time, even if you’ve heard it many times before. My problem, and I suppose it’s not a big one, is that, as a travel writer, I feel like I have heard them all before.
So to maintain my sanity, I regularly scour my sources to collect tips I’ve never heard before, or at least haven’t heard in a while. Five such money-saving tips that you may not know follow. And if they’re old hat to you, my apologies…but please do pass the “savings” on to a friend.
With the holiday travel season underway, expect airports to be flush with harried families and short-fused fliers. In these merry and maddening days, members of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) are often seen as the nemesis of stress-free travel. But the TSA understands your pain and has even released a helpful guide of how they plan to accommodate the high-volume of customers, and what customers can do to make their experience manageable. Some of the agency’s tips include:
Take Advantage of Streamlined Security Screenings
Waiting is the hardest part. Ask a flier to list their travel annoyances, and security screenings will often appear near the top of the list. Frequent passengers can benefit from a more efficient security process, which may cause even the most veteran travelers to fantasize about hopping the line and making a break for their terminal. The TSA PreCheck program allows eligible passengers to enjoy a streamlined experience, by-passing some of the more vexing aspects of the screening process. Such perks may include keeping shoes, jackets, and belts on, as well as being able to hold standard-compliant liquids and gels in a carry-on bag. Read more
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