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Air travel: Pre-screened flyers to fast check-in line


After more than a decade of time-consuming security check-ins at airports, Homeland Security has come up with a way to relieve those who fly most.

You don’t have to be a big movie star, politician or general to get through security fast if you’re willing to become a designated PreCheck passenger. Now, in most major U.S. airports, those who’ve volunteered required information in advance can go through the fast line. The information is a barcode print on special boarding passes, and can be quickly scanned by a security officer.

Of course, TSA reserves the right to conduct spot checks and carry-on inspections. And even the PreCheck passengers may occasionally need to take off their shoes and/or get groped or a body scan.

For more info, go to www.tsa.gov/

Glowing Online Travel Reviews: Truth Or Planted? PDF Print E-mail


Of course, some are legit opinions by actual customers who enjoyed the experiences. However, in today’s tough marketing battles, many hotels, restaurants, resorts, cruise lines and other travel-related businesses create and post fake positive testimonials.

Las Vegas, where reality rarely happens, is an example of fake customer testimonials. Ongoing resort and hotel ads in many media should serve senior travelers as good examples of fake ads. Included in the exaggerations are vacation packages, hotel rooms, dining, entertainment and other features.

Rule of travel testimonials: Take it all with a grain of salt. Before you book one of the alleged fantastic offers, check with friends and relatives who have recently actually experienced the destinations.

 
Southwest Offers $99 Flights Between US Cities To Hawaii PDF Print E-mail


Before the pricey holiday and winter seasons happen, SW entices retired seniors and others with bargain tickets. Of course, seats are limited, and advertised prices may not include add-ons, taxes and other costs. If planning some Aloha time in the next few weeks, check with your travel agent and/or SW for best times and prices.

 
Scratch, scratch! Watch Out For Hotel Bedbugs! PDF Print E-mail


Awhile ago your travel4seniors.com editor woke up in a Las Vegas hotel room with the urgent need to scratch. It was bedbugs. A call to the front desk resulted in an offer to move to another room. Result: A quick shower, immediate check-out and refusal to pay for the room.

Don’t let it happen to you! When going into your hotel room, first thing to do is pull the covers off the bed and check closely for any suspicious spots, live and otherwise. If you see anything suspicious, go to the front desk, report it and check out. Preferably without paying. If bites become infected, see your doctor.

 
Soar As A Space Tourist If You Have The Nerve And Dough PDF Print E-mail


The Gateway Foundation hopes to create a commercial space station with passenger suites, orbiting the Earth. The California company is planning a cruise ship-style hotel floating among the stars.

The aim is to start test runs by 2025 and open for business in 2027. When space tourism happens, it will be only for the very daring and very rich. Concurrently, Richard Branson's Virgin Galactic also plans to launch sub-orbital space stations in the near future, costing $250,000 per person, per trip. Of course, it includes all meals and booze. And maybe some spectacular sightseeing. www.cnn.com/travel/article/space-hotel-designs-von-braun-station-scn

 
Amsterdam, The Netherlands, Grabs More Tourist Money PDF Print E-mail


Will it be Double Dutch? Next time you visit this favorite foreign city of your travel4seniors.com editor, be aware. Politicians there will be taking more cash out of your travel pocket.

The charming city already has the highest hotel tax rates in Europe. And they will go higher. Of course, as in many world cities, that’s just the tip of the extra charges. So, when you see ads touting hotels for $99.99 a night, whether in the Dutch or other tourist city, that’s just the start of the real cost. With add-ons of local taxes, resort fees and other hits, consider your advertised room rate may be actually only about half of what you’ll really have to pay. www.cnn.com/travel/article/amsterdam-tourist-tax-increase

 
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