NOVEMBER 16, 2022

AAA RELEASES THANKSGIVING HOLIDAY TRAVEL PERIOD PREDICTIONS


AAA has released its official Thanksgiving predictions, stating that over 54 million Americans are expected to travel more than 50 miles during the Thanksgiving holiday travel period, reports Travel Pulse. According to the report, the Thanksgiving travel period is defined as the five-days from November 23 to November 27. The estimated number of travelers for 2022 is 1.5 percent higher than in 2021, 98 percent of pre-pandemic volumes and the third busiest since AAA started tracking in 2000. Among all travelers, an estimated 4.5 million will travel via plane during the holiday, an eight percent increase from 2021 and nearly 99 percent of the 2019 volume. “Families and friends are eager to spend time together this Thanksgiving, one of the busiest for travel in the past two decades,” AAA Senior Vice President of Travel Paula Twidale said. “Plan ahead and pack your patience, whether you’re driving or flying.”

POSSIBLE DISRUPTIONS ANTICIPATED AT LONDON HEATHROW DUE TO WORKER STRIKE


As reported last week by Reuters, several hundred airport workers at London Heathrow Airport are planning to strike for three days from November 18-20. This may affect ground-handling, airside transport, and cargo. Delays, cancellations, and service disruptions are anticipated in Terminals 2, 3 and 4, and could extend to disruption before, during, and after the strike dates. Travelers are advised to check flight status with their airline before they travel and prepare for possible delays and disruptions. Heathrow Airport has said that it will do all it can to minimize disruption, stating, “We are aware of proposed industrial action from Dnata and Menzies colleagues at Heathrow, and we are in discussions with our airline partners on what contingency plans they can implement to support their ground handling should the strike go ahead. Our priority is to ensure passengers are not disrupted by airline ground handler shortages.”

CHINA FURTHER RELAXES COVID-19 TRAVEL RESTRICTIONS


The Chinese Government has decided to ease flight restrictions and reduce quarantine times for close contacts of cases of COVID-19 and for inbound travelers by two days, reports Airport Technology. Additionally, the government is removing penalties on airlines that bring infected travelers into the country. The new rules were discussed by the government as part of 20 measures with the objective of improving COVID-19 control policies. According to the new rules, the quarantine period for close contacts has been reduced to five days at a centralized location plus three days at home. The suspension of international flight routes due to the detection of infected travelers was also abolished, while for inbound travelers, the pre-departure COVID-19 test requirement was cut to once in 48 hours from twice. China is one of the last countries to reopen economically in the wake of the pandemic.

NEWARK AIRPORT UNVEILS THE NEW TERMINAL A


Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR) unveiled its new $2.7 billion Terminal A set to open on December 8, reports Travel Weekly. Twenty-one of the terminal's 33 gates will open right away, and the remaining 12 will open in 2023. Air Canada, American Airlines, JetBlue, and United Airlines will be the first carriers to transition to the new Terminal A, with Delta moving over next year. The new terminal replaces an outdated Terminal A that opened in 1973 and has approximately 1 million square feet of space and modernized check-in, security, and baggage-claim areas. Xovis sensor technology will be employed at check-in, security, smart restrooms, waypoints, and departure gate doors. The technology is expected reduce wait times, increase overall efficiency of operations, and improve the traveler experience. Additionally, the new Terminal A features sustainable design initiatives, including solar panels on the curbside glass canopy and roof of the integrated parking structure, new electric buses to support shuttle operations, water-efficient fixtures, a "cool roof," and energy-efficient indoor lighting and controls.

SIX AIRLINES TO REFUND $600M TO TRAVELERS


The US Department of Transportation's (DOT) has ordered six airlines to pay back $600 million in fines to hundreds of thousands of travelers who are owed flight cancellation refunds, reports Business Travel News. Refunds per airline range from $76.8 million to $222 million, with fines between $750,000 and $2.2 million, according to the agency. The six carriers issuing refunds and being assessed penalties, include Aeromexico, Air India, Avianca, El Al, Frontier, and TAP Portugal. Frontier Airlines is facing the largest penalty, paying back $222 million in required refunds and is now facing a potential $2.2 million penalty from the DOT. According to the DOT, airlines and ticket agents must refund travelers if the airline "cancels or significantly changes a flight to, from, and within the United States, and the traveler does not wish to accept the alternative offered." It is unlawful for an airline to refuse refunds and instead provide vouchers, according to the agency. 

UNITED, ARCHER PLAN ELECTRIC AIR TAXI SERVICE FROM MANHATTAN TO NEWARK AIRPORT


United Airlines and Archer Aviation are planning to launch a shuttle service between New York's Manhattan heliport, located just above Battery Park on Pier 6, and Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR), reports Forbes. The companies stated that a trip will take 10 minutes in Archer’s planned four-passenger Midnight aircraft, which is designed to take off and land vertically like a helicopter and fly on wings in between like an airplane. United paid Archer a $10 million deposit for 100 of the company's eVTOL aircraft, and the companies plan to announce additional routes, according to Archer. Archer hopes to launch service in 2025; however, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has yet to formulate key regulations that will govern the operation of electric vertical takeoff and landing aircraft, let alone begin the process of certifying as safe any of the novel class of aircraft being developed by Archer and competitors like Joby and Beta Technologies. In October, Delta Air Lines announced a partnership with air taxi developer Joby Aviation to offer airport shuttle service in New York City and Los Angeles.

FAIRMONT DALLAS

1717 NORTH AKARD STREET

DALLAS

The Fairmont Dallas is ideally located in the heart of the downtown Dallas Arts District & Central Business District. Surrounded by a wide array of Dallas fine dining restaurants, shopping, arts, and entertainment makes Fairmont Dallas a great base to explore the city. Combining hospitality and elegance with that special Texas flair, the hotel is located near Uptown and West Village, offering trendy upscale boutiques, art galleries, inviting eateries, and exciting nightlife. The Fairmont Dallas is less than one mile from the American Airlines Center. 

THE AMESWELL HOTEL

800 MOFFETT BOULEVARD

MOUNTAIN VIEW

Guests can relax and retreat from the comfort of their own desk. Work from The Ameswell in fully equipped wellness rooms.


Enjoy a dedicated workspace, high-speed and complimentary Wi-Fi, in-room work out equipment, complimentary water & coffee, and Mirror by Lululemon. After a hard day’s work, wrap up the night and head over to Roger, the in-house bar, and restaurant.


Train mentally and physically throughout the day – stay refreshed and inspired from The Ameswell.

THE PENINSULA NEW YORK

700 FIFTH AVENUE

NEW YORK CITY

The Peninsula New York, the iconic Fifth Avenue property that has epitomized elegant luxury for decades, welcomed back its devoted patrons to its award-winning Spa and recently launched its brand-wide Wellness program. ‘Life Lived Best’ will provide guests at all properties with unprecedented opportunities to pursue their fitness, mindfulness, and nutritional goals – and to access those opportunities whenever they wish through a dedicated Wellness Portal and 24-hour Wellness Concierge service. The program includes in-room video fitness tutorials and guided audio meditations, schedules, and bookings for in-person exercise and mindfulness classes, plant-based cooking classes, spa treatments, and wellness-themed events, and Naturally Peninsula menu choices.

THE PLAZA

768 FIFTH AVENUE

NEW YORK CITY

The Plaza Hotel has welcomed guests from around the world to enjoy its magic at the castle in Central Park South for 115 years. Located on Fifth Avenue, The Plaza’s prestigious address defines elegance with unmatched service and an ever-evolving modern sensibility. Revel in the magic of Afternoon Tea in The Palm Court and savor the sights in the elegant Champagne Bar. Offering 282 distinctive guest rooms, including 102 luxurious suites, The Plaza showcases its limitless future with its Legacy Suite collection.


The Plaza is pleased to offer travelers a complimentary one-level room upgrade at check-in, based on availability. This offer is valid for all reservations booked now through December 31, 2022, for stays January 1 through March 31, 2023, and is not valid for suites. 

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