Tag Archives: pdx

Travel News: Oregon and Washington delay their REAL ID program by one year

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Oregon and Washington delay their REAL ID program by one year

For Portland:  You’ll be able to use your current driver’s license to get through airport security awhile longer. That’s because the federal government has granted Oregon, Washington, and 15 other states extensions to comply with the Real ID program. This is a law passed after 9/11 that requires people to have real IDs to board airplanes or enter government buildings. Having one is proof of U.S. citizenship.
Oregon and Washington both recently agreed to cooperate with the program.
They now have until next October to phase it in.
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Dublin’s Statues Will Now Call Your Cell Phone

Ten of Dublin’s most famous landmarks have been given the gift of speech, thanks to Fáilte Ireland’s new tourism initiative titled “Dublin’s Talking Statues.” The project allows tourists to answer calls on their smartphones from Oscar Wilde, James Joyce, and more, Lonely Planet reports. How does this work exactly? New plaques have been placed at the statues with QR codes. Passers-by simply scan the code with their phone, which will immediately ring. Each call features a famous Irish actor reciting a monologue written by a current Irish author, given from the point of view of the statue in question. The goal is to persuade the public to look at these landmarks with new eyes, almost viewing them as animate characters with feelings and backstories instead of just objects to walk past.

DFW Airport Has New Automated Security Lanes

Last Thursday, passengers got a glimpse of a more efficient and hopefully speedier future with the unveiling of automated screening lanes at DFW Airport’s Terminal D. The two Terminal D lanes join two other automated lanes that opened recently in Terminal A. For now, their presence is limited to just two checkpoints out of dozens at the airport’s five terminals. DFW plans to add six more lanes in the coming months at a total cost of $5.7 million, paid for out of the airport’s budget. “We’re looking for opportunities to create different, new and more positive experiences for the traveling public,” said Ken Buchanan, DFW Airport’s executive vice president of revenue management. DFW Airport is one of ten airports using the new technology. The screening enhances security while decreasing wait times.
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Royal Caribbean Sets Return To St. Thomas

Royal Caribbean International has set the date for its much-awaited return to St. Thomas since the Caribbean destination was impacted by the hurricanes last month. On Nov. 10, the cruise line will make its way to St. Thomas for the first time since early September with Adventure of the Seas. With power and water to the island fully restored and most downtown shops, restaurants and bars and tour operators fully operational, guests will be able to experience a diverse and extensive array of dining, shopping and activities. Guests can enjoy boat and catamaran excursions to explore the turquoise blue waters and abundant sea life of the Caribbean and soak in the sun at some of the region’s best beach destinations: Secret Sands Beach, Secret Harbor Beach Club, Lindquist Beach, Abi Beach and Honeymoon Beach on Water Island.

Disney World Hotels Are Allowing Dogs For The First Time

Walt Disney World will allow hotel guests to bring dogs to four of its on-property resort hotels. Starting yesterday, Disney’s Yacht Club Resort, Disney Port Orleans Resort, Riverside, Disney’s Art of Animation Resort and Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort cabins will welcome four-pawed guests. As part of the new dog-friendly test program, Disney is ensuring all schnauzers, great danes, poodles, and very good dogs travel as comfortably as their owners with an amenity kit given upon check-in filled with puppy pads, dog walking maps, disposable bags, a pet ID tag, a mat and bowls for food and water. Guests will also be given a hotel room door tag to indicate that an animal is inside. The Fido-friendly program will cost $75 per night at Disney’s Yacht Club and $50 per night at Disney’s other three participating resorts, with a limit of two dogs per room.

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Bali’s Volcano Activity Reaches A New High

Earthquake activity from Bali’s Mount Agung volcano has reached its highest level since the volcano came back to life in August. The Volcano Observatory Notice for Aviation (VONA) has the volcano at its highest alert level short of an eruption. Over the weekend there was an earthquake that measured at 4.6 on the Richter scale while there are almost 1000 smaller tremors a day being recorded. There are increases in shallow and deep tremors indicating magma is moving upwards. All airlines are monitoring the situation closely and travelers have been urged to make sure their contact details are up to date. Various governments have warned that travel to Bali could be severely affected by an eruption and Bali’s international airport has set up an emergency operations center.

Viking Orders Six New Longships

Neptun Werft has already delivered 51 vessels for Viking River Cruises and have confirmed another order for six vessels for Viking River Cruises. They are due for delivery in 2019. These additional Viking Longships will stretch 135 metres, are 11.45 metres at the beam and have a draft of 1.6 metres. Each can accommodate 190 passengers in 95 outside cabins; additionally, 31 cabins are available for the crew. Equipped with diesel-electric propulsion, the vessels are tailored for operation on numerous European rivers including the Rhine, Main and Danube as well as Dutch inland waters.

Bergen Caps Daily Cruise Visitors To 9,000

Cruise Industry News reports Bergen, Norway’s busiest cruise port, has informed cruise lines it is limiting the number of cruise calls per day to four ships and/or 9,000 passengers. The cap will come into effect immediately for new bookings, whilst honoring existing bookings, says Sandra Diana Bratland, the new cruise development manager at Port of Bergen. ‘Tourism is both important and welcome in Bergen, but on a few days every summer the city and its attractions can be crowded. The city’s popularity, its attractive location and steady growth of visitors has in recent years led to discussions as to how many visitors the city can comfortably accommodate per day,’ noted Bratland. The municipality, in collaboration with Port of Bergen and Visit Bergen, decided to limit the number of passengers per day, ‘to maintain Bergen as a sustainable and popular city to live in, to visit and to do business in,’ remarked Bratland. 490,546 cruise passengers visited Bergen in 2016.

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Global Entry Opens at PDX

The Global Entry Enrollment Center is now open at Portland International Airport. Hours of operation are from Mondays through Fridays, 9am to 3pm.

What is Global Entry? GE is a program that promotes expedited clearance for pre-approved low-risk travelers entering the U.S. U.S. citizens and permanent residents at least 14 years of age are eligible to apply. If approved, membership is valid for five years. Members are also eligible to participate in other Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Trusted Traveler programs such as TSA Pre, the expedited screening process for domestic travel on five airlines: Alaska, American, Delta, United and US Airways.

How Do I Apply? To apply, fill out an online application at www.globalentry.gov and pay the $100 nonrefundable application fee. (The $100 fee is waived for American Express Platinum Cardholders.) If approved, you’ll be contacted for an interview. Bring your valid passport and one other form of government-issued identification. CBP officials will take your photo, obtain fingerprint information and provide you with a profile number. The GBP sticker is placed on your passport. After your card is issued, give your travel agent your Global Entry information so they can add it to your reservation.

How Do I Use Global Entry? While at the airport, locate the Global Entry kiosk. You will go through a few seconds of identity verification—the camera will take a quick photo and scan your prints. This automatically pulls up your flight information and once you verify you have nothing to declare, the machine will print a GE ticket. Give this to the customs official in a special Global Entry line, bypassing the long customs and/or immigration lines and you are on your way.

Global Entry kiosks are available at the following airports:

http://www.globalentry.gov/locations.html

Where is the Global Entry Enrollment in Portland International Airport (PDX)?

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 Willamette Intl Travel Agents are up to date with all the latest and current travel news. Call us for more details, 503.224.0180 or email info@wittravel.com.

 

 

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Summer in PDX

photo by Michael Silberstein

We interrupt our very productive series of glamorous destinations to focus on one closer to home—in fact, it is WIT’s home, the City of Roses–Portland. Summer is blooming here in the city, and every Portlander is awake, alive, moving on the streets, through the rivers and across the mountains. The rain has, for the time being, abated, and of course with the weather comes a variety of incredible local tours ready to hit the path.

Portland Spirit Cruises

There are a number of cruises on the Columbia River just perfect for sightseeing excursion down the lovely Gorge. The Sternwheeler houses 499 passengers, and resembles a steamboat from the 1800’s. They board in Cascade Locks, and have a number of themed options available, from sightseeing, brunch and dinner cruises, to the spectacular “landmarks of the gorge” cruise—including Multnomah Falls, Beacon Rock, Bonneville Locks and Dam, among others.

Also check out the new Outrageous Jet Boat adventures, which take you out on your very own motor coach to either Astoria or Cascade Locks. For those interested in the history of region, check out the Portland Bridge Cruise, a tour that takes you from St. John’s to Sellwood Bridge, and— new in 2012—the Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail Bridge. There are discounts for groups, seniors, children, as well as upgrades, gift cards, and private rentals available.

Hop-on Hop-Off Portland Trolley Tour

This sightseeing tour includes live narration and 11 stops at major attractions all over Portland. Departures start 10:00 AM at Pioneer Courthouse Square, last train at 4:00 PM. Stops include The Rose Garden, Oregon Zoo, NW23rd shopping district, Powell’s Books, Chinese Garden, and OMSI, plus many more. See the city of roses with an expert tour guide, at your own pace. One day passes are adults $27, children (6-12) $14, and two-day passes are adults $32, children $16. Under 6’s ride free.

Evergreen Escapes

Immerse yourself in the breathtaking nature of the Northwest with these inclusive tours that merge mountains and waterways with local culture, food and beverages. Customize your experience with a range of available tours, from half days to multi days, with activities from kayaking and rock climbing to cycling and wine/brew tours. Evergreen Escapes operate from March to October only, and run the gamut from Mt. St. Helens and Mt. Hood, to Silver Falls and Cannon Beach. All tours are escorted in groups of 9 or smaller, include tea and pastries, with select Oregon wines and fruits where available. Call for more information on specific tours.

Interested in exploring what the Northwest has to offer? Email at info@wittravel.com or call 503.224.0180 for more information and reservations. We have local connections for excellent hotel rates in Portland and the metro area.

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ISIC and IYTC cards

Summer is fast approaching and students are getting ready for their study abroad and exchange programs. So we are encouraging students to get their International Student Identification Cards as soon as possible. ISIC/IYTC cards allow you to receive great benefits and discounts all over the world, including internet, museums, hostels, tours, phone cards, language classes, etc.

Willamette International Travel issues the ISIC, International Youth Travel Cards (IYTC), and the International Teacher Identity Card (ITIC). We are the only local office that issues all 3 cards. Unlike some offices, we can also issue to youths independent of any university, and without the prerequisite of a purchase of airfare.

Youths must bring in a passport photo and a student ID (for ISIC) or a proof of age (for IYTC).

We can also assist youths in arranging airfare, travel insurance and youth rail passes.

Interested in picking up a card? Call Wailana at 1.503.224.0180 or email reception@wittravel.com. Want to stay up to date with travel info? Check out our facebook and twitter!

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