Fly To Mars: Agency Seeks Senior Married Couple

According to CNN, the Paragon Space Development Corporation may hire a husband and wife to be on the first manned (and womanned) journey to the Red Planet. Still in the early planning stages, the space flight would happen in 2018.

The planners may look for a senior couple as volunteers, because Paragon scientists fear radiation and other space hazards would have negative effects on young travelers’ internal organs. That means the travelers would have to be beyond childbearing age.

With new technology, the 70-million-mile roundtrip would take just under two years each way. So far in the plans, there would be no landing on Mars, just a brief orbit of the Red Planet, the total requiring the couple to be away from Earth for almost 48 months.

Old traveler’s response: Four years is a hell of a long time to be away from the grandkids, senior discount at IHOP and the TV soap operas.

Beware Of Free Cruise Scams By Phone And/Or Internet PDF Print E-mail

The old adage about there’s no such thing as a free lunch applies to crooked travel offers. You get a message saying you have “won” or “been selected for” a free cruise. What it really involves are costs including piled on charges and taxes you must pay while aboard. Plus you must sit through a high-pressure timeshare pitch meeting of four to five hours.

If you accept the so-called free cruise, when you go aboard, you’ll find you’re on an creaky old ship heading for a dingy little island port. Meanwhile, the pitch is still pushed to upgrade and pay more as you sail for food, drinks, shore excursions and other costly features. Just ignore the original pitch and book your cruise through a trusted travel agent and/or upscale cruise line.

Q: What’s My Best Travel Way To Meet Other Singles? PDF Print E-mail

Widowed since last year, I need to get out socially now. Suggestions? MPJ, Cleveland OH

A: A good way to shake off the loneliness is do a cruise. One of the best lines for special sailings is Holland America. It caters to solo travelers via its Single Partners Program, featuring hosted events for onboard singles, and special singles-themed cocktail parties and games.

Holland America also groups singles together at meals and other shipboard schedules. On sailings of 40 days or longer, the line provides male hosts to accompany single women to dinner and social events. When booking, consider the roommate matching service with fellow solo travelers of the same sex. Two Holland America ships offer dedicated singles cabins: Koningsdam has 12, and Prinsendam has three.

Air Taxis: Soon To Take Over Busy City Streets? PDF Print E-mail

A test flying taxi recently flew over Singapore's crowded waterfront, eventually expecting to lead to normal air service in traffic-choked Asian cities.The 18-prop German-made chopper may soon regularly carry passengers.

Volocopter has already successfully tested in Dubai, Helsinki, Germany and Las Vegas. Singapore may be among the first to get the regular daily service within two to four years. Fares are expected to be moderately higher than charged for earthbound taxis. However, the dangers of the new air taxis and delivery drones accidentally hitting other vehicles and people have yet to be considered by local officials and eager lawyers.

U.S. Suspends Flights To Some Cuba Destinations PDF Print E-mail

The ban affects all cities on the island except Havana. The intent is to force the Cuban government to allow its citizens more freedoms. The new restrictions begin December 12. Critics of the ban say it makes it difficult for Cuban-Americans to visit families in other areas of the nation.

JetBlue flights to Santa Clara in central Cuba and the eastern cities of Holguin and Camaguey have been cancelled. Also American Airlines flights to Camaguey, Holguin and Santa Clara, the beach resort of Varadero and the eastern city of Santiago. Flights to Havana will continue unless there is a change in U.S. policy.

Los Angeles CA: LAX Forbids Taxi & Uber From Curb Pick-Ups PDF Print E-mail

The Los Angeles International Airport has had enough of the crowded street traffic and blockage when passengers arrive at the pavements outside exit doors. LAX moved passenger pick-up to a new area, called LAX-it, near Terminal 1.

Passengers now must walk about 15 minutes to the new area, and shuttle buses also will board them from at all terminals. So, next time your flight lands at LAX and you need to hail a ride, be patient and follow the rules. While it may be inconvenient and confusing for awhile, soon you may actually get home a bit quicker.


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