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Aeroflot: It's Not Just for Crashes Anymore

By Jason Cochran

Posted on 02/22/2016, 6:30 PM

Aeroflot, the flag carrier of the Russian Federation, has a dreadful reputation for being unsafe. And it deserves it: The Aircraft Crashes Record Office, a non-government organization based in Switzerland, says that as of May 2010, 8,231 passengers have died in Aeroflot crashes.  That's a lot. Air France comes a distant second, with 1,783 fatalities, followed by the defunct Pan Am (1,...

The True Numbers on Cruise Ship Outbreaks

By Jason Cochran

Posted on 01/18/2016, 7:45 PM

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in the United States has put out some sobering new numbers on cruise ship norovirus outbreaks.  It looked at all data between 2008 and 2014. And contrary to what the panic drummed up by your local news station, outbreaks are down. "During the study period, the rates of acute gastroenteritis per 100,000 travel days decreased among passenge...

Innovative New In-flight Safety Video Animated with 1,000 Delft Tiles

By Jason Cochran

Posted on 10/16/2015, 6:15 PM

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines is the latest entrant in the battle to come up with the least boring in-flight safety video. The novel concept: Create an animated version of the pre-flight safety admonition by hand-painting Delft Blue tiles—because they're Dutch, so points for authenticity—and then using those tiles as a ceramic form of hand-painted cel, shooting one after another to animate the inst...

TSA's Luggage Lock Skeleton Keys Leaked

By Jason Cochran

Posted on 09/11/2015, 3:00 PM

Consumerist and Wired report the design of the master skeleton keys used by the TSA to open and inspect your luggage has been leaked on the Web. Now anyone can use a 3-D printer to duplicate the keys and open luggage—and people are doing it. The security blunder stems from a story in the Washington Post published nearly a year ago, which ran an image of the keys along with a story on lugga...

A New App Promises to Make Travel More Safe for Solo Vacationers

By Pauline Frommer

Posted on 09/09/2015, 6:15 PM

  Men and women travel differently. And that’s not a comment on shopping habits or boozy pub crawls. For women, especially solo travelers, safety is always front of mind, a concern that can influence the destinations we pick, the routes we take and the activities we participate in. Because of that, I’ve always been a bit jealous of the carefree male travelers I see, men who ...

Acapulco Sets Up Special Tourism Safety Force

By Jason Cochran

Posted on 07/31/2015, 12:45 AM

When gangs overtake your once-glamorous seaside city and force the military to move in and the U.S. to issue a travel warning, you've got a public relations problem.  Acapulco is on it. The Pacific Coast city that was once the ultimate destination of the Love Boat has worked with federal, state, and local authorities, including the Mexico Tourist Board, to support CAPTA, which in English s...

After an Incident, Disney Bans Selfie Sticks

By Jason Cochran

Posted on 06/30/2015, 6:45 PM

Leave them at home.  Disneyland and Walt Disney World—and Disney parks around the world—have banned selfie sticks. This means that the most popular theme parks on the planet have joined the many institutions that have declared them annoying and dangerous. The world's greatest museums got rid of them months ago (click here for that story). Last week, a foolish tourist at Disney Califor...

Unrest Makes Puerto Vallarta a No-Go

By Jason Cochran

Posted on 05/12/2015, 6:00 PM

Royal Caribbean, Disney Cruise Line, and Celebrity have all cancelled port visits to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, following a wave of crime in the tourist city and the surrounding Jalisco state. Gunmen associated with a major drug cartel have been setting fire to vehicles, banks, and gasoline stations in response to crackdowns on them. Cruise lines are replacing their Puerto Vallarta visit...

After Germanwings: Are the Budget Airlines Less Safe than the Others?

By Jason Cochran

Posted on 03/26/2015, 6:30 PM

  On Thursday morning on ABC's The View, Michelle Collins, one of the show's revolving co-hosts, suggested that because the European cut-price airlines are tough on customers with fees and optional pricing, then it's possible that attitude contributed to the pilot-initiated crash of Germanwings Flight 9525 in the French Alps. "I have to say this airline, Germanwings, they're a bud...

Use It Or Lose It: Will "Dead" Electronics Be Confiscated At Airport Security?

By Pauline Frommer

Posted on 07/15/2014, 2:15 PM

That's the question many travelers were asking themselves after the TSA posted a notice, on Sunday night, that those entering the United States would be asked to turn on cellphones, computers and other electronics when they went through security. This is apparently in response to new intelligence about a possible threat to inbound airplanes. The T.S.A. notice states that those devices tha...

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