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Woman: Writing in Journal (Photo: Thinkstock/Jupiterimages)

Do you have great travel tips you want to share? Have you just returned from the best trip ever? Or the worst one? We're looking for new writers to feature on SmarterTravel, and you could be one of them....read more»

Oregon: Mt. Hood - Palmer Snowfield (Photo: Thinkstock/Comstock Images)

Summer heat getting to you? Head to Palmer Snowfield for a respite, where you can ski or snowboard (or just cool off in the snow) year-round. Timberline Resort offers the only year-round ski-lift service in America, so leave the bathing suits behind and pack your snow-jackets....read more»

Travel brochures (Photo: IndexOpen)

Following is our regular summary of the best frequent traveler promotions reviewed during the past week.

If it was a good deal—or a notably bad deal—from an airline, hotel, or car-rental loyalty program, you can read all about it here, and plan your travel accordingly.

American Adds Canada's WestJet as Mileage-Earning Partner

Members of American's AAdvantage program can now earn miles for WestJet flights, and members of WestJet's Rewards program can earn WestJet dollars when flying on American....read more»

Photo: Emirates

Beginning on July 1, members of JetBlue's TrueBlue program will be able to earn points for flights on Dubai-based Emirates—one point for every two miles flown on Emirates in discount coach, one point per mile flown in full-fare coach, one point per mile flown plus a 25 percent bonus in business, and one point per mile flown plus a 50 percent bonus in first.

Emirates serves more than 120 destinations, including Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, New York, and San Francisco....read more»

Man: Shocked at Computer (Photo: Thinkstock/iStockphoto)

The new "10 Most Innovative Airlines" report from airlinetrends.com raises praise of trivia to a high art. Most of the so-called innovations featured are either further tweaking of already ultra-luxurious first-class and business-class cabins and cabin service, or cosmetic changes and PR hype—stuff that's all sizzle and no steak.

Among the latter: featured vodka brands, duty-free merchandise display cases, new branding campaigns, partneships with contemporary designers, healthy-flying tips booklets, a new corporate structure. Wow! Those perks sure make flying better for you folks in the back of the plane....read more»

Airport Gate (Photo: Index Open)

Delta is the latest airline to test self-boarding. Joining more than a dozen other carriers, which are mostly international, Delta has installed experimental self-boarding gates at Atlanta and Las Vegas.


The idea is to cut costs by reducing the number of airline staff members required in boarding areas. The cost reductions seem significant enough that the Las Vegas airport has installed self-boarding capability throughout its newly opened terminal three expansion....read more»

WestJet Plane (Photo: WestJet)

American Airlines and Canadian discount carrier WestJet have expanded their codeshare relationship to include partial frequent-flyer program reciprocity in the tie-up.

Effective immediately, members of American's AAdvantage program can earn miles for WestJet flights; and reciprocally, members of WestJet's Rewards program can earn WestJet dollars when flying on American....read more»

Airport security (Photo: P. Wei, iStockphoto.com)

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) announced the addition of United at O'Hare and US Airways at Reagan Washington National to the list of airline and airport combinations eligible for expedited security.


When enrolled travelers get to the entry point for security screening, the agent there directs them to a special line that bypasses some of the regular procedures and presumably gets them through the system faster than other travelers. ...read more»

Northern Ireland: Belfast - Belfast Eye (Photo: Thinkstock/iStockphoto)

The face of this modern city has changed quite a bit over the last decade or two....read more»

Orthaheel (Photo: Orthaheel)

What Is It: Aurora Sandals from Orthaheel.

Price and Where to Buy: $59.99-$74.95 from Orthaheel's website, Zappos, Amazon, and a number of other sites.

Pros: The embellished uppers of the flip flops are very cute and come in a number of colors. Unlike most flimsy flip flops, the Aurora Sandals offer lots of arch support, and won't cause the normal back and leg pain you usually get from flat rubber foot flops. The foot-bed was designed by a podiatrist, and it absorbs shock and reduces stress on feet and ankles. We also like that the material is easy to care for—just wipe it off with a damp cloth.

Cons: The Aurora Sandals are kind of bulky. They are definitely more stylish than orthopedic shoes, but their sturdiness does show. ...read more»

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