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Nightmare Traffic at LaGuardia, Living on a Cruise Ship, and More: Today's Travel Briefing

A roundup of travel news from all over
Here's what's happening today in the world of travel.

* NIGHTMARE TRAFFIC AT LAGUARDIA AIRPORT (Village Voice). Traffic around the entrances and exits to LaGuardia Airport was a nightmare yesterday, resulting in major delays and in some cases missed flights. 
 
The source of the trouble: the airport's ongoing, $5.3 billion renovation project, which has required lane closures for new construction, leading in turn to the sort of traffic snarls that could impel frustrated travelers to abandon their cars and cabs along the Grand Central Parkway and drag their luggage, briefcases, and strollers down the shoulder of the highway toward the terminals.
 
No, really. That happened yesterday. 
Many passengers missed their flights anyway—and some were delayed because their flight crews were stuck in traffic, too.
 
Construction for the makeover is supposed to last at LaGuardia until 2024; officials say the gridlock will improve as each phase is completed. In the meantime, they suggest taking public transportation whenever you can.
 
We suggest flying into or out of one of the other airports in the region—JFK or Newark.

* WOMAN LIVES ON CRUISE SHIP ALL YEAR ROUND (CBS News). Recently, our own Arthur Frommer discussed the possibility of seniors ditching the retirement village and moving onto a cruise ship to live full time, 52 weeks a year.
 
If you've got the money, spirit of adventure, and relative good health for it, the idea doesn't sound like a bad one. After all, on a cruise pretty much everything is taken care of for you—cooking, cleaning, entertainment, activities. And if you lived on the ship, you'd get to travel the world and stay snugly at home at the same time.
 
As it happens, that's the arrangment currently enjoyed by 88-year-old Lee Wachtstetter, who's been living aboard the Crystal Serenity for the last eight years.
 
A frequent cruiser even before she decided to take up residence, Wachtstetter has been on more than 240 trips at sea by now and has visited so many ports that she rarely disembarks. “Everything is ‘Been there, done that,'" she told CBS News. "If I’ve been there and done that, I don’t go off the ship."
 
It's not what you'd call an affordable living arrangement for everybody, however. It costs Wachstetter about $175,000 per year.

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* BABY BORN ON FLIGHT GETS 1 MILLION AIR MILES (CNN). A newborn named Haven just received a gift we're guessing her parents didn't register for: 1 million air miles from Philippines carrier Cebu Pacific. 
 
How come? Because last week Haven was born on one of the airline's flights.
 
Haven's mother went into labor—more than five weeks early—in midair somewhere between Dubai and Manila. With the help of the cabin crew and two nurses who happened to be among the plane's passengers, she gave birth to the baby as the pilot diverted the flight to Hyderabad, India.
 
Cebu Pacific says Haven is the first baby ever born on one of its aircraft. She and her mother are both doing well.
 
According to one passenger, in fact, the birth was pretty uneventful, considering. "We only heard one semi-loud screech," Missy Berberabe Umandal wrote on Facebook, "and a few seconds later, there were tinier, cute screeches, and it was when we knew the baby was born."
 
Thank heavens they gave all those airline miles to a baby who already knows not to cry too much on a plane.

Our Travel Briefing appears each weekday morning, Monday to Friday. Catch up on past installments by clicking here. For more updates, as well as vacation photos and travel tips, follow us on Facebook and Twitter. 
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