The Consumerist | Today marks the beginning of what could be an ugly four months at JFK International Airport, as the NYC-area travel hub loses its busiest runway for renovation work. This move has forced the airport to reduce the number of flights going in and out by 20% during this time.
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which operates all three major airports in the NYC area, has reduced the total number of arrivals and departures at JFK from around 1,300 to 1,050.
The redo on Runway 13-31 isn't just a simple repaving job. The $376 million effort will widen the runway by 50 feet and add taxiways, all with the goal of reducing flight delays by around 10,500 hours each year.
Travel Daily News | Continental Airlines announced the expansion of its mobile boarding pass service to London’s Heathrow Airport, becoming the first carrier to offer paperless boarding passes on nonstop flights from the United Kingdom to the U.S.
The service allows customers to receive boarding passes electronically on their mobile phones or personal digital assistants (PDAs) and eliminates the need for paper boarding passes.
eTurbo News | According to Vietnamese media sources, construction will begin next month on a 220-km long coastal road in the Mekong Delta as part of an international highway linking the country with Cambodia and Thailand, the project's management board recently announced.
Running through the provinces of Ca Mau and Kien Giang, the US$440 million road will be built in cooperation with the governments of South Korea and Australia, as well as the Asian Development Bank with its seat in Manila, Philippines.
Once it is completed, the road will be part of a nearly 1,000-kilometer link known as the Thailand-Cambodia-Vietnam Southern Coastal Road Economic Corridor, starting at Bangkok and ending at Ca Mau Province's Nam Can District.
The suspension is set to expire on March 8, barring the reaching of an agreement before then, both sides said in a Frankfurt labor court.
"The judge was very clear," airline spokesman Klaus Walther said. "He recommended the union to stop the strike action and to return to the negotiation table."
New York Times - Associated Press | Thousands of travelers scrambled to find flights, trains, hotel rooms or rental cars on Monday after Lufthansa pilots began a four-day walkout over job security that grounded at least 800 flights and upended travel across the continent.
Deutsche Lufthansa AG quickly rushed to get a court injunction to halt the strike and send 4,000 pilots back into their cockpits before more harm was done to passengers and shareholders.
The court in Frankfurt said a decision could come as soon as Monday night. (...) The strike disrupted travel plans for some 10,000 passengers worldwide.
CNN (Washington) | To the list of instructions you hear at airport checkpoints, add this: "Put your palms forward, please."
The Transportation Security Administration soon will begin randomly swabbing passengers' hands at checkpoints and airport gates to test them for traces of explosives.
Previously, screeners swabbed some carry-on luggage and other objects as they searched for the needle in the security haystack—components of terrorist bombs in an endless stream of luggage.
eTurbo News | If you've ever been hit with a surprise fee when you rented a car or booked an airline ticket and found yourself saying, "There ought to be a law," I have some good news for you: There is. Or at least, there could be.
There could be two laws, actually. The Clear Airfares Act is a Senate bill that would require airlines and online travel agencies to disclose any additional fees before you buy a ticket. And the End Discriminatory State Taxes for Automobile Renters Act would prohibit states or localities from collecting a discriminatory tax on motor vehicle rentals.
Just one problem: Neither of these bills have been passed.
But these proposed rules could make your next trip better, and they deserve our attention.
Los Angeles Times (Associated Press) | Next time you think about flying standby on American Airlines, be prepared to give the gate agent your name and $50.
The days of hanging around the agent's desk, hoping for a free switch to an earlier flight are over at American for many passengers.
The nation's second-largest airline said Wednesday that starting with tickets bought on Feb. 22, only elite frequent fliers, travelers in first or business class, military personnel and people who bought pricey coach tickets will be allowed to fly standby for free.
Everyone else switching flights on their day of travel will have to pay $50 to get a confirmed seat.
Have you heard of Momondo.com yet? I’m always scouting for affordable flights, like every savvy traveler these days, and recently came across this Copenhagen-based aggregator (U.S. searches make up one-third of its market).
Whenever I encounter a site like this, I’m skeptical—how can this site really be better than the rest?—but it’s hard to argue with Momondo’s credentials. It claims to search more than 750 airfare sources (U.S. competitor Kayak covers roughly half that), including low-cost carriers, consolidators, aggregators, fledgling and major airlines. And when traveler advocate Arthur Frommer tested the top American agreegators—including Kayak, SideStep, and FareChase—only to find that the European Momondo consistently found fares that were 20 to 40 percent less.
Bloomberg News | Air passengers should be made aware of the health risks of airport body screenings and governments must explain any decision to expose the public to higher levels of cancer-causing radiation, an inter-agency report said.
Pregnant women and children should not be subject to scanning, even though the radiation dose from body scanners is “extremely small,” said the Inter-Agency Committee on Radiation Safety report, which is restricted to the agencies concerned and not meant for public circulation. The group includes the European Commission, International Atomic Energy Agency, Nuclear Energy Agency and the World Health Organization.