In the News this Week...

brought to you by News Editor, Roger Bray
  • Free WiFi at Los Angeles Airport

    almost 8 years ago

    Complimentary WiFi access is now available in the terminals at Los Angeles International Airport. Connections are possible in most public areas. Passengers needing a higher speed service can pay a premium of $4.95 for one hour or $7.95 for 24 hours (though we hope you won't be stuck there that long). Other airports please copy.

  • Silver Travel Advisor in the New York Times

    almost 8 years ago

    Christine Negroni, hailed by the Miami Times as an investigative reporter of the first rank, and by Time Magazine as having “a mind you could shave with", has written an article for the New York Times entitled Sick on the Road? Try the Grocery Store. The article was inspired by the Silver Travel Advisor feature Medicines on the Holiday Menu. Christine interviewed Debbie Marshall from Silver Travel Advisor for her article as well as  Dave Harcombe, a travelling pharmacist and regular contributor to Silver Travel Advisor.  Debbie commented: “We are delighted that Christine contacted us for her article and were only too pleased to assist with  her research into remedies on your doorstep for holiday ailments”.

    Read Christine’s article in the New York Times

  • BOGOF on Broadway

    almost 8 years ago

    Heading for New York next month? From September 4 – 16 two for the price of one ticket deals will be on offer for 19 Broadway productions, including Porgy and Bess, War Horse Chaplin, An Enemy of the People, Jersey Boys and Evita. And if you present a ticket stub from one of the theatres participating in "Broadway Week Fall 2012" you'll get a free dessert at over 25 restaurants.

  • Dreamland to be revived

    almost 8 years ago

    Travellers of a certain age may remember happy hours at Margate's Dreamland. Now Thanet Council has been given Government approval to turn the former amusement centre into a £10m heritage park, with historical rides and sideshows. That would include restoring a Grade II listed roller coaster – and maybe rides such as the Wild Mouse, Journey into Space, the Water Chute and the Corbiere Wheel. The movement which follows a long campaign, follows the opening of the Turner Contemporary gallery, which has already provided a significant boost for regeneration of the resort.

  • Free breakfast now available at most US hotels

    almost 8 years ago

    Almost four out of five American hotels now offer free breakfast, Travel Weekly in the US reports. Among mid price properties the figure is 95 – 97%. The report is based on a survey the American Hotel & Lodging Association and industry research organisation STR Global.

  • News 515

    Julie and Richard

    Julie Booth wins the July 5* prize to Budapest

    almost 8 years ago

    Julie Booth, who won the July 5* prize to Budapest, in partnership with Regent Holidays, writes:

    Richard is Irish, and I am from Lincolnshire. We live in Godalming, Surrey, after meeting in Birmingham! I am 51, and Richard is 49. We love travelling all over and have been to Mauritius (where the photo was taken), Europe, North America. We love city breaks the most, and so far our favourite has been Barcelona followed by Rome. I have travelled with my daughter to Kitzbuhl, Madrid, Prague, New York and Oberstdorf, and my son to Iceland. I have also been to Sweden, Austria, Italy, and Spain. Neither of us have been to Hungary though and have been told that Budapest is a beautiful city.

  • News 514

    The Iron Bridge

    Festival at Ironbridge

    almost 8 years ago

    Ironbridge Gorge, the complex of fascinating industrial museums near Telford in Shropshire, is to stage a festival next month to trumpet its status as a World Heritage Site. It will kick off on September 22 with a market by the River Severn with stalls selling all manner of local food and craft products. Musicians will play in the streets of the recreated town and local historians will be on hand to provide guided walks and information. It will end with a firework display at 8pm. The "World Heritage Festival" will continue through the following week, with more walks and talks and demonstrations of traditional crafts during the weekend of September 29-30. Visitors should not there will be no parking in the Gorge on the 22nd. You'll have to park and ride.

  • News 513

    Botanique Hotel & Spa

    Luxury hotel to open in Brazil

    almost 8 years ago

    A new hotel scheduled to open in Brazil's Mantiqueira mountains  on 1st November promises interiors by some the country's top designers  with wooden beams reclaimed from old farm houses and – as Rio de Janeiro prepares to launch the next Games – stables with "Olympic standard" horses. Set on 700 acres in Campos do Jordão, between Rio and Sao Paulo, it will comprise eleven villas with private gardens and six suites. The building will incorporate river boulders and locally sourced chocolate slate which only reaches the correct colour once every seventeen months. It will have a spa, cinema, swimming in a pool or lake, views of the valley – and no vehicles save its own electric buggies will be allowed within one kilometre. If you're travelling from Sao Paulo and can manage for a night with minimal luggage, they'll pick up the rest the day before you arrive at the hotel and have it waiting for you, ironed and hung up, when you've checked in. Campos do Jordão, where local wildlife includes puma, is a getaway bolthole for Sao Paulo city dwellers. It has been described as "the Brazilian Hamptons". All this will not come cheap, mind. Rates start at around £790 a night, including all meals, nightly wine tastings and tips.

  • Better air holiday protection on the way

    almost 8 years ago

    The Government looks likely to force airlines offering hotels and car hire on their web sites to provide customers with the same financial protection as all travel companies. It is thought that this will include trips booked by clicking through from an airline web site to that of a separate company offering accommodation, for example. Airlines selling conventional package holidays must already do so under the ATOL (Air Travel Organisers Licence) umbrella. But they are not currently obliged to cover flights and hotel rooms or car rentals which are sold as separate elements. Since spring this year  travel agents – whether in the High Street or operating on line – have been required to provide protection for customers booking this way.  But bringing airlines into the net requires more long winded, primary legislation. The Department for Transport has now indicated that doing so is one of its preferred options for cutting back the thickets of confusion still obscuring holiday  protection. The ATOL system ensures holidaymakers travelling by air get their money back if firms which organise their holidays go bust or are brought home if it happens while they are abroad.

  • News 511

    Himalayas by motorbike

    Himalayas by Enfield Bullet

    almost 8 years ago

    Cross the Himalayas on a vintage motorbike. A new tour launched by India specialist Transindus takes travellers on a guided journey by 500cc Enfield Bullet from Amritsar to join the old Hindustan – Tibet road and on to the Baspa, Spiti  and Pin Valleys – the last is home to the snow leopard – and across the Johoola suspension bridge in a wire sling. The highest pass on the route is at 4550 metres. From Manali bikers will rode through the Kullu Valley – the Valley of the Gods – to Simla, where they will leave the bikes and catch the narrow gauge railway en route for Delhi. The trip is best taken in June, July or August. It costs £2978 (£2828 for a pillion passenger) including flights from the UK.

  • Rynair texts delay alerts

    almost 8 years ago

    Budget airline Ryanair has promised to send text messages alerting passengers if their flights are delayed by more than 90 minutes – advising them of new planned departure times. It cites s study by information and communications group SITA which found 95% of people now travel with mobile phones.

  • Liverpool to get new hotel

    almost 8 years ago

    With chocolate chip cookies as a welcome at check in, a spa and a swimming pool, Hilton is to launch a new hotel in Liverpool under its up market DoubleTree brand. The 87 room property is scheduled to open next summer in the city's former Municipal Annexe, a Grade Two listed building dating from 1863. Hilton has also recently opened DoubleTree hotels in London, Leeds and Manchester.

  • Biz class Hong Kong service to be axed

    almost 8 years ago

    Hong Kong Airlines is to axe its business class only service from Gatwick on September 10. Passengers who have already booked trips to or from Hong Kong will be offered alternative travel or full refunds. The demise of the link, which has been running only since March, is the latest in a long list of failed attempts at operating such services on long haul routes from the UK in competition with major, longer established carriers. The airline blamed "the continuing weak economic outlook in Europe". It has been offering two classes on its Airbus A330-200 aircraft – Club Premier, with lie flat beds and Club Classic, with about a foot more leg room than the premium economy cabins operated by rivals on the route.

  • News 507

    Mossman Gorge

    Dreamtime in Queensland

    about 8 years ago

    Mossman Gorge, in northern Queensland's Daintree National Park, has a new visitor centre designed to provide insights into the culture of the Aboriginal Kuku Yakanji people. Incorporating a gallery of indigenous art, it serves as a base for "Dreamtime Walks", led by  Kuku Yakanji guides who explain the uses of plants, bush fooid sources – and the people's relkationaship with this tropical environment. Visitor can swim in a water hole, watch the guide demonstrate tradition skills such as oche painting and refuel with bush tea and a damper.

  • B&N opens in the Marche

    about 8 years ago

    Touring in Italy? A new hilltop b&b has opened in the countryside of the Italian Marche region. The Sambuco is not far from the Adriatic in the village of Morrovalle near Macerata. It has a swimming pool and its three rooms have antique furniture. A two night opening package is available at €370 for two people, including dinner in a nearby trattoria and a recipe book.

  • Docklands' new Germany flights

    about 8 years ago

    CityJet is to launch flights its first flights from to Germany from London City Airport at the start of the winter schedule. It will operate daily to Münster-Osnabruck from October 29 with fares starting at  £81 one way and £128 return. From Monday to Thursday flights will leave the Docklands airport at 7.35am, returning at 10.45am. On Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays services will depart from London at 2.30pm, 7.55am and 4pm respectively, returning at 5.40pm,11.05am and 7.20pm.

  • Working holidays - surge in silver volunteers

    about 8 years ago

    An explosion of interest among the over 50s in voluntary working holidays overseas was reported today. Dr Peter Stowe, managing director of Projects Abroad, which sends volunteers to work on anything from child care to conservation in 25 countries around the world, said his organisation greatly valued the contribitions seniors could make. With age, he said, "comes a mixture of experience, skills and patience that younger volunteers simply cannot offer. Some of our most successful placements have involved working professionals and retirees who are volunteering in a role in which they have many years of experience.” His remarks came as Thomas Cook published the results of a survey which found 44% of over 50s confessed they were jealous of the amount of travelling today's younger generation totted up – with 40% saying they intended to make up for it after retirement. A spokesman said: ‘"Getting older no longer means relaxing and taking it easy as it seems the older generation is more adventurous than ever. Parents and grandparents are now listening to experiences of their children or grandchildren after returning from their holidays and dream of doing the same thing. We've seen a rise in the number of over-50s booking trips to far-flung destinations once their children have left home and an increase in long-duration holidays, with some booking 21 and 42-night packages.”

  • News 503

    Hurtigruten cruise

    Northern Lights - more flights

    about 8 years ago

    Norwegian coastal voyage operator Hurtigruten has upped the number of direct flights connecting with its Northern Lights sailings this winter. It has added deparures from Bristol and Belfast. Hurtigruten is offering flight inclusive packages with sailings including a 12 day round trip from Bergen to Kirkenes and back, starting at £1299, and a five day "Arctic Highlights" voyage from Tromso to Kirkenes and back (from £949).

  • Latin American self catering

    about 8 years ago

    Self catering villa rentals in Peru, Brazil, Honduras and Belize have been launched by specialist tour operator Journey Latin America. Properties include an ocean-front house on Brazil's Emerald Coast with swimming from a private jetty, sleeping up to eight people and costing from £696 a head for three nights – and Urubamba Villas in Peru's Sacred Valley with Inca ruins and local markets nearby which can be reached on foot or by bike.

  • Hertz to rent canal boats

    about 8 years ago

    Car hire giant Hertz is taking to the water. The company has launched boat rentals on the canals of Amsterdam. Through a partnership with local firm Boot Amsterdam, BV it is offering a variety of craft up to a capacity of 35 people at hourly rates from €5 per person or €150 for per boat. Large boats have amenities as kitchens and bars. Customers can also hire private chefs and order tailor made catering.