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Pauline Frommer: Social Distancing Inspires Creativity at Restaurants

By Pauline Frommer

Posted on 05/15/2020, 1:00 PM

What's the new specialty at some of the world's restaurants? Extreme theatricality. In an attempt to shield customers from the buzzkill of social distancing, restaurateurs are getting mighty creative. Earlier this week, Frommer's wrote about a Swedish farm-turned-eatery and its nightly solo dinner service. That's just the beginning of a worldwide trend in innovation. At Cafe & Kondito...

If Americans Want to Travel Again, They'll Fight for On-Demand Testing

By Jason Cochran

Posted on 05/14/2020, 12:00 PM

Countries around the world are making plans for welcoming international tourists again. Austria: Tourists must quarantine for two weeks—unless they can show recent proof of a negative Covid-19 test. Iceland: Tourists must quarantine for two weeks—unless they can show recent proof of a negative Covid-19 test. Greece: Tourists must present proof of a clean bill of health for entry. As th...

Despite What They Say, Airlines Are Not Enforcing Mask Use

By Jason Cochran

Posted on 05/13/2020, 4:00 PM

This spring, news about U.S. airlines has followed a familiar pattern. First, the airlines trumpet a new safety measure that the news media repeats, generating a round of praise. Then someone exposes the announcement as a sham. Airlines tell customers they can cancel flight reservations—only to refuse to issue cash refunds. Airlines announce they will leave middle seats open—only to renege o...

Europe Has a Plan to Save Summer Travel—But Will Non-Europeans Be Welcome?

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 05/13/2020, 10:30 AM

The European Union laid out a plan today for salvaging the summer travel season—at least, for Europeans.  Facing bleak economic prospects due to a drying up of tourism amid the pandemic lockdown, the EU's governing body, the European Commmission, released a set of guidelines for reopening the continent's internal borders and restarting travel infrastructure. The main thrust of the commission...

Enough Is Enough: Let American Cruise Workers Go Home

By Jason Cochran

Posted on 05/07/2020, 2:00 PM

In March, the U.S. Coast Guard helped more than 265,000 passengers leave cruise ships and get home. Crew members, however, were forced to remain aboard. About 80,000 crew members are still there, floating in international waters off the U.S. coast, unable to go home. In the TV news clip below, aired on Kansas City–based station KMBC, five perfectly healthy U.S. citizens describe what it's li...

Better Buy a Watch: Your Travel Future Will Be Timed

By Jason Cochran

Posted on 05/06/2020, 6:00 PM

Travel is still shut down, but the coronavirus has already changed it. New social distancing measures have forced attractions around the world to look at entrance procedures anew. Before reopening, those attractions must figure out ways to manage crowds better so we can all have our personal space. Timed tickets are about to be the new normal. And the dominance of timed tickets won't fade...

Greece Announces a Bold Concept to Open Soon. Now, About That Plan...

By Pauline Frommer

Posted on 05/05/2020, 8:00 AM

Greece has been comparatively lucky this spring, with some of the lowest infection rates and fatality numbers in Europe (144 deaths in a population of 11 million). With that in mind, and since its curve seems to be flattening, Greece partially reopened May 4, putting hair salons and small retail back into service.  And in a move that puts the country at the forefront of European tourism, Gre...

Under Fire from Congress, Carnival Floats Plan to Restart Cruises This Summer

By Jason Cochran

Posted on 05/04/2020, 2:00 PM

Carnival Cruise Line has announced a phased plan to begin sailing that would mean a return to cruising by August 1. The principal points of the plan as stated in the company's news release: "• All North American cruises from June 27 to July 31 will be cancelled. • Beginning August 1, we plan to resume cruises on the following ships:    Galveston: Carnival Dream, Carnival Freedom and Ca...

France May Be Effectively Closed to Visitors Until Late July

By Pauline Frommer

Posted on 05/04/2020, 12:00 PM

In the stretch of just a few weeks, the world's top spring and summer events—including Burning Man, the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, South by Southwest, and Edinburgh's performing arts festivals—have all gone virtual, been postponed, or gotten canceled entirely (at least for 2020). Now it looks like we Americans may have to kiss most of summer in France goodbye, too. On Friday, ...

Ireland Lays Out a Five-Pronged Phase-In Period for Reopening

By Pauline Frommer

Posted on 05/04/2020, 7:00 AM

What is Ireland without its pubs? Irish citizens, emerging from a very strict lockdown, will soon find that out. In the five-step reopening plan, announced late Friday, Irish Acting Prime Minister Leo Varadkar announced that pubs would be among the businesses opening in the final phase, scheduled now for August 10. Tourists could return slightly sooner, with hotels and museums set to reop...

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