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Our Top Tips for Surviving Holiday Air Travel this Year

By Pauline Frommer

Posted on 12/13/2017, 2:45 PM

The airlines are expecting 51 million passengers to fly in United States in the final two weeks of December, a figure that’s up 3% from last year’s record number. Break it down and that means some 80,000 more passengers a day than fly during an average day during the rest of the year. If you will be among the masses, you'll want to carefully strategize. Here are our suggestions:   Check in 2...

Airlines Limit Smart Bags Allowed on Flights

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 12/06/2017, 3:30 PM

The supposed next big thing in luggage just hit a snag.  Several U.S. airlines have announced bans on technologically sophisticated "smart" suitcases with lithium-ion batteries that can't be removed. The high-powered batteries help make possible such wonders as suitcases with the capacity to charge cell phones, make their locations known via GPS, and even follow their owners around airports.  B...

More Complex Screening Begins for U.S. Passengers

By Jason Cochran

Posted on 10/25/2017, 12:00 AM

You might remember that last spring, several international airlines, mostly from predominantly Muslim countries, were banned from allowing laptops in passenger cabins. That, and the uneven application of the policy across airlines, caused a diplomatic furor, and some carriers even curtailed service to the United States. In response, the U.S. government reversed the requirement but dictated new secu...

After Las Vegas, Should Airport Security Measures Now Be Applied to Hotels?

By Arthur Frommer

Posted on 10/10/2017, 12:00 AM

The recent horrific shooting in Las Vegas has touched off a number of articles and proposals by travel writers on the relationship of hotel security measures to acts of terrorism.   For example: Should the suitcases of hotel guests be subject to the same electronic inspection as the same bags undergo at airports? Should security guards enter a hotel room whose front door has displayed a “do not...

Now Is the Best Time to Apply for or Renew a U.S. Passport, Says State Department

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 09/26/2017, 9:00 PM

If you need to apply for or renew a U.S. passport, the best time to do so is right now, according to the U.S. State Department. Processing times are shortest between September and December, the agency says, and longest (up to six weeks) from January to the high season of summer travel. Even if your passport isn't set to expire before the end of the year, you might still need to renew—many countri...

Non-Flyers Now Allowed Into Secured Areas at Pittsburgh Airport

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 09/06/2017, 8:30 PM

We've got good news for airport shoppers, chaperones, and prolonged goodbye-sayers. For the first time since 9/11, an American airport is allowing people without tickets into secured areas.  The facility in question is Pittsburgh International Airport, where officials have worked with the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) over the last two years to develop a program called MyPITpass, ...

Italian Airport Relaxes Liquid Ban—for Pesto Only

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 06/26/2017, 4:00 AM

Each year, hundreds of jars of pesto are confiscated at airport security checkpoints in the Italian city of Genoa, where the sauce made from basil, pine nuts, cheese, and olive oil is a local specialty. Apparently, the ban on flying with liquids of more than 3.4 ounces (100 ml) even applies to the most delicious liquids.  Until now. Thanks to the Genoa airport's new "pesto is good"...

No Laptop Ban on Flights from Europe to U.S.—For Now

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 06/01/2017, 4:00 AM

For the time being, a ban on in-cabin laptops will not be extended to flights from Europe to the United States, according to the Department of Homeland Security.  However, a spokesperson for DHS secretary John Kelly said that the option is "still on the table." The announcement was made on Tuesday following a discussion between Kelly and European officials.  For security reasons, c...

Travel Without Hesitation to Foreign Democracies, but Steer Clear of Authoritarian Nations

By Arthur Frommer

Posted on 05/22/2017, 12:00 AM

The risks outweigh the benefits of visiting countries with oppressive governments, says Arthur Frommer...

The World's Safest Country for Tourists

By Zac Thompson

Posted on 04/19/2017, 4:00 AM

Finland has been named the world's safest country for travelers in this year's edition of the highly regarded Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Report from the World Economic Forum.  The annual study rates 136 nations according to a variety of factors, including natural resources, transportation infrastructure, environmental sustainability, and several others. Overall, Spain was found to ...

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