Now playing on Facebook: the first in what apparently will be a series of videos depicting rude inflight behavior, produced by JetBlue. In conjunction with the #FlightEtiquette hashtag introduced on Twitter, JetBlue is calling out the kind of misbehavior that makes the travel experience even worse than it might otherwise be.
The first video, subtitled "How Not to Take a Nap," stars a bearded male falling asleep and then proceeding to flop into the lap of the woman in the adjacent seat. It gets more cringe-worthy from there. There's no dialogue, just a music backtrack. And the video stops short of condemning the rude sleeper, or suggesting what his seatmate's appropriate response would be. It's designed to show, not to tell. ... read more»
In 2014, there were 21 fatal commercial airline accidents, resulting in 986 deaths. Although those are sobering numbers, the long-term trend in airline safety is positive. Those 2014 numbers were, statistically, well above the 10-year average for fatalities.
Nevertheless, last year's tragedies—including the two Malaysia Airlines incidents and the more recent AirAsia crash—have left many fliers rattled.
Realistically, most travelers don't have the luxury of factoring into their travel planning the relative safety profiles of various airlines, even if such information were readily available. But for those who are so inclined and willing to look beyond the airlines' own websites, or just curious about which airlines are deemed the safest, there is at least one source. AirlineRatings.com bills itself as "the world's only safety and product rating website," and it has just published its list of the world's 10 safest airlines for 2015. ... read more»
If you're leaving from Salt Lake City, you're in luck: The airport is the most reliable in America when it comes to on-time performance.
Official Airline Guide (OAG), an aviation-data tracking service, just released its 2014 on-time performance statistics for U.S. and international airports as well as domestic and international airlines.
How did U.S. airports fare? SLC is the highest-ranking, with an 88.2 percent on-time rating. According to OAG, this means that 88.2 percent of flights arriving to or departing from SLC were within 15 minutes of their scheduled times. Following close behind is Sea-Tac, with Detroit and Minneapolis/St. Paul tied for fourth.
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AirlineRatings.com has released its annual list of the world's top ten safest airlines for 2015, and not a single American airline made the cut. On the top? Qantas, followed by Air New Zealand, British Airways, Cathay Pacific Airways, Emirates, Etihad Airways, EVA Air, Finnair, Lufthansa and Singapore Airlines. ... read more»
I recently wore a Blynk camera, a wearable hands-free camera that makes little time lapse movies by taking one picture per second for up to 16 hours (or one picture every five seconds for up to 56 hours), on an afternoon exploring Tokyo. After reviewing the footage I captured wearing the camera on my jacket lapel while taking the subway, exploring the backstreets of the Omote-sando neighborhood, and visiting the nearby Meiji Shrine, I came up with this short-list of things to do and not to do:
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Display your stunted emotional growth with a plastic partition designed for use on plane seats. The new Soarigami Airmail Edition is a foldable device that splits your part of the armrest from the side that belongs to the stranger next to you. The thing doesn't exist yet, but Soarigami has lots of pictures and promises it will come to fruition in early 2015. You can put your email address on a pre-buy list to be the first entitled jackass to get one.
Here's how it works: First, decide in your mind that one side of the armrest is yours and no one can touch it. Next, unfold the thin patent-pending divider and attach it to the armrest. Protect your territory from intruders as if you were an animal and not an adult person. Enjoy your flight. ... read more»
No matter how well you plan, my recent trip showed me that you still encounter gotchas and snags—some general, some specific to seniors. On the other hand, if you need assistance, regardless of age, you can usually find it.
Hidden Age Limits: I rented a car in Bari, Italy, through RentalCars.com, which seemed to have the best deal. During the rental process, the only age information the website requested was to make sure I was over 25. The rental turned out to be with Enterprise, which shared a desk with subsidiary National at the Bari airport. But when I presented my reservation information and ID at the counter, the agent told me that Enterprise did not rent cars to anyone over age 71. This was my first inkling of that limitation. The agent went on to say that National could rent to older drivers, but that it did not have a car available. My arrival was in the late evening, so I took a taxi to my hotel, near the airport, and got online to book a replacement through the Avis website. Next morning, I showed up at the Avis counter, got my car, and went on my way. ... read more»
Major suppliers and third-party agencies continue to escalate the tug-of-war to "own" you as a customer. The prize in the tug-of-war is, of course, money.
Airline Fare "Brands": Airlines are trying to "brand" their airfares depending on which extras each fare brand includes, and their websites present a menu of varied fare "brands" rather than just economy or first/business class. Of the big lines, American leads the pack, with its multilevel pricing scheme for domestic economy-class flights: ... read more»