The global economy remains shaky, Europe can be considered to be in a state of flux and there are plenty of people who still obsess over their perceptions of the inconvenience of air travel, but apparently that’s not going to keep many people at home this summer. A new report from the trade group Airlines For America forecasts that this will be a record-breaking summer for Americans traveling internationally. According to the report, 26.8 million passengers will travel on international flights from U.S. airlines this summer, which would surpass last year’s record by about half a million. The group cites fairly stable airfares as a significant reason why global travel is expected to be so robust.
So, it means those flights will be crowded this summer.
With that in mind, here are some other appropriate links from the week, which hopefully can make that crowded flight a little more enjoyable. Let’s start with your reading material – At CNNGO, Zach Dundas offers his opinion on the best airline magazines in the world. Not that you’d choose an airline based purely on its in-flight magazine… Would you?
If you’re traveling across oceans and multiple time zones, sleep on board the plane becomes a bigger piece of the equation. Business class sections offer seats that recline into beds, but that can create some issues. The Wall Street Journal’s Scott McCartney looks at the different bed configurations on planes and what works best for passengers.
And then there is the matter of airline security. CNN’s Marnie Hunter reports that most airports outside the U.S. are not using the latest technology for security check-ins and that appears to be a potentially serious gap in airline safety. But on the other hand, workers at Gatwick Airport in London are being accused of being overzealous in detaining passengers. Specifically, white passengers. USA Today’s Ben Mutzabaugh cites a UK report that says “white airline passengers are being discriminated against by border officials fearful of being accused of race discrimination” when they question black travelers.” Most of this alleged discrimination involved flights arriving from the Caribbean. It’s the latest bit of bad press for London airports, who’ve gotten bashed around the last few weeks in the run-up to this summer’s London Olympics.
Adventure travel has become big business, thanks at least in part to the televised exploits of Bear Grylls, the world’s most prominent adventure traveler. Kenan Christiansen of the New York Times has a good Q&A with Grylls, who says “the wild can empower you.”
Word to the wise before traveling internationally – if you need to renew your passport, you better make sure your tax return is in order. A report from Investopedia says new legislation would give the IRS the authority to rescind your passport if your taxes aren’t up to snuff.
And the eagerly anticipated Club Sandwich Index from Hotels.com has arrived. The index gauges the cost of visiting a city by the cost of a club sandwich. This just in – Paris is expensive.