Travel News: Some Staples stores to offer TSA PreCheck & Passport photos

Air France strike continues, May dates announced

Air France pilots unions have announced new strikes for May, starting in a week’s time. Four strike days have been agreed by three unions representing workers for the airline in the latest in a long-running pay dispute with management. Next Thursday, May 3, will be the first day of the new industrial action, followed by May 4, 7 and 8. Air France has already been hit by 11 days of strikes since February, which have been called by unions representing pilots, cabin crew to ground staff.

Some Staples stores to offer TSA PreCheck enrollment, passport photos

Office supply retailer Staples has plans to make it easier for travelers to sign up for TSA PreCheck. The company, which was purchased last year by private equity firm Sycamore Partners, has announced plans to bring enrollment centers to 50 stores this summer, and more locations in the future. Staples wrote in a press release that a partnership with security firm IDEMIA will bring IdentoGo enrollment centers to stores in Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, New York and Seattle. IdentoGo centers in Staples stores would also offer passport photos and certified birth certificates, the companies wrote in a press release.

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Napa’s New Tequila Train

Napa Valley Wine Train has announced a new experience for adults, dubbed the Tequila Train. As part of a partnership with Casa Dragones and a great way to celebrate Cinco de Mayo, the Tequila Train will debut May 5 and will run three hours along the fields surrounding Napa Valley. Passengers on the train will be treated to four gourmet courses, signature Casa Dragones Tequila cocktails and live Flamenco guitar music from Trio Solea. The Tequila Train will make two additional trips in 2018, including on the Day of the Dead in October and National Tequila Day in July.

Budapest Airport get major environmental award

After a 10 year effort, a major international environmental award has been received by Budapest Airport: ACI (Airports Council International) confirmed that Budapest Liszt Ferenc International Airport achieved the “carbon-neutral” accreditation. This means that by applying environmental conscious solutions, the airport has reduced its CO2 emission generated by its daily operation, and the remainder is balanced out by it in a way that is under international supervision. Only 30 airports in Europe have this accreditation, and BUD is the first in Eastern Europe. The energy consumption of the airport – based on the energy consumed for making hot water, heating, and lighting – is equivalent to that of the consumption of 23 thousand households, the energy demand of a small town.

Royal Caribbean clarifies dress code again

Guests on Royal Caribbean Cruise Line sailings will no longer be able to wear shorts or tank tops when they go to dine in main dining rooms, even during casual nights. The line updated the dress policy on its website this week, in what seems like an attempt to clear up any confusion after its blog said it had added shorts to its dress code for casual nights last week. The new rules are: For formal nights, the cruise line recommends “suits and ties, tuxedos, cocktail dresses or evening gowns.” For smart casual nights, “think of this as a step up from your typical dinner wear” and wear “collared shirts, dresses, skirts and blouses, or pantsuits.” For casual nights, Royal suggests “jeans, polos, sundresses and blouses” but asks guests to “keep swimwear to the Pool Deck.” Shorts and tanks will be accepted for breakfast and lunch, but not in the main dining room at dinner. For comparison, Carnival Cruise Line and Norwegian Cruise Line both allow shorts to be worn during casual dress nights.

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“Kauai is open,” says the Tourist Authority

The Hawaii Tourist Authority wants agents to know that Kauai is open and welcoming travelers to enjoy a beautiful place known as the Garden Island, with the only exception being the northernmost communities from Wainiha to Haena. Those are temporarily closed to vehicle traffic while repairs continue to reopen Kuhio Highway. Communities in east Oahu and Kauai’s north shore recently took the brunt of an abnormally powerful thunderstorm that settled above those areas, first over Oahu on the evening of April 13 and then over Kauai on April 14 and 15. Kauai’s north shore absorbed the worst of the storm with more than 28 inches of record-setting rainfall in a 24-hour period, resulting in flooding, landslides blocking Kuhio Highway, and extensive property damage, the totality of which some lifelong Kauai residents say they have never seen before.

Lounge for all airline / class of service travelers opens in Rome’s Fiumicino Airport

Plaza Premium Lounge, the world’s biggest independent airport lounge network, together with Aeroporti di Roma has announced the official opening of its operation in Rome. Plaza Premium Lounge Rome marks a new addition to its 160+ outlets around the world and is its sixth location within Europe. Located in Terminal 3 (Area E), at the Extra Schengen Departures on the Upper Level of Rome Fiumicino Airport, the facility offers an oasis in which to relax. Open to travelers regardless of their choice of airline or class of travel, this state-of-the-art independent airport lounge has adopted the use of fine timber, polished marble and quality fabric in its design. Its architectural design is inspired by the Roman Colosseum and reinforces a sense of place of this country. Offering 300 seats including the signature honeycomb seating to provide extra privacy, the lounge is open 24 hours daily and also houses six shower rooms – the first of its kind in Fiumicino Airport. Other facilities and services include complimentary Wi-Fi, a series of entertainment including an extensive variety of digital reading material and TV channels plus ample recharging stations for all electronic devices,’ and of course food and drink. Travelers have the option of pre-booking on the website (www.plaza-network.com) for two and five hours lounge use packages. Prices start at EUR 40 for two hours’ lounge access including shower.

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