Sequester Pester: Twisted Flight Schedules Predicted

Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano reported that government budget tightenings are already presenting problems in the air travel industry. It’s because of possible orders to reduce TSA staffing and overtime, as well as hiring freezes. She says they’re starting to cause delays in some of the busiest U.S.  airports.

At the same time, many major airport authorities are denying the claim, and say all is going as normal. That is, if you consider long departure waits and late arrivals as normal. Of course, the so-called sequester plan to reduce spending throughout the federal system hasn’t yet hit with full force. When it does, and if it requires severe personnel cuts, TSA will have to do some belt-tightening.

Therefore, if you anticipate travel by air in the coming months, when flight day approaches be sure to keep in close touch with your travel agency, airline and local airport. If government cutbacks affect your plans, prepare alternative ways to get to your destination and back home again.

No More Unchecked Wheelies Allowed Free On Ryan Air PDF Print E-mail

As airlines keep cramming in additional seats to bring in more money, passengers will not only be squeezed in the smaller spaces. Additional dollars from their wallets will be squeezed out.

Ryan Air now limits carry-ons to smaller, soft bags and backpacks that fit under seats. If you plan to fly Ryan Air and other airlines with the same restrictions, always be sure of the latest bag requirements. If you don’t want to pay the ever-growing fees for checking luggage, scan the ads for those you are permitted to carry aboard free.

Scottsdale AZ: Enjoy Winter Holidays In Desert Warmth PDF Print E-mail

While most holiday celebrants around the country must cope with icy cold weather, this Arizona resort brings both warmth and holiday fun to its guests. The Fairmont Scottsdale Princess does everything to make the holidays traditional inside, while tall decorated cacti beam with millions of brilliant lights and decor.

Featured are Santa's secret headquarters, ice-skating rink, kiddie trains, Santa and his crew. Christmas at the Princess festival runs from November 20 through December 30. Sip, Savor & Celebrate holiday packages, starting from $309 per room, include a $75 daily resort credit and express access to some of the holiday attractions. For more info, go to www.scottsdaleprincess.com/Seasonal-Events/Christmas-at-the-Princess

Senior Fliers: Beware Of Poopy Emotional Support Dogs PDF Print E-mail

In a recent airline incident, a passenger boarded and plopped into his assigned seat. Moments later he discovered he had sat on a stinky souvenir left behind by a dog. Until recently, the only uncaged animals allowed on flights were registered service dogs.

However, a new category was created for so-called emotional support animals to occupy airline seats with their emotionally (and often mentally) needy owners. To do it legally, all it takes is a certificate from a doctor or registration with the airline, whether the animal is canine, feline, feathered or whatever.

So, in future flights, before you settle down into your seat, be sure to check first whether it’s clean or the previous non-human occupant left behind a rancid reminder.

Tired Of Wandering As A Lonesome Senior Traveler? PDF Print E-mail

Since retirement, you’ve ventured freely around the world from Manhattan to Manchester to Moscow to Madagascar as a single. Enjoyable experiences, but now you want to plan your next trips to be joined with one or more similar seniors. 

With the ever-growing social networks, your idea can easily become a reality. Check online for suggestions and offers that appeal to you. It could be a seniors hiking trip along the Great Wall of China, a seasoned singles-only cruise to the Bahamas or a seniors tour of the wonders of ancient Rome. You can make specific choices of companions, including those with similar backgrounds and interests in food, history, entertainment and other subjects. So, join a senior gang and make your next trip a fun-filled bang!

#TipTheBillChallenge Encourages 100% Waiter Tips PDF Print E-mail

Senior travelers often are confused about tipping. In a few countries, it’s forbidden and factored in with the price of the meal or drink. In almost all other parts of the world, the diner and drinker are expected to leave a tip after satisfactory service.

So, how much should you tip? It depends on service, total amount and other factors. The most general answer if from 15 to 20 percent of the bill. Your travel4seniors.com editor remembers car hopping at a Hot Shoppe in Philly way back as a college student. With all our running around the parking lot, we were lucky to get 10 percent. And not so lucky when the no-tip car drivers tossed their empty plates and trays at us as they raced away.

Food servers, both indoor and outdoor, work hard and deserve a tip. Sometimes a generous one can be a happy surprise. Recently, some very generous diners have been leaving 100 percent tips through the #TipTheBillChallenge, and bragging about it on social media. Hey, where were you back when I was slaving at the Hot Shoppe?


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