Alec Baldwin is back in the news again, and this time it has nothing to do with his tense relationship with his ex-wife Kim Bassinger or because he decided to berate his daughter again in a candid cell phone conversation. This time the 30 Rock celeb was booted off an American Airlines flight after he refused to turn off his phone. Apparently he was in the middle of playing the addictive game, “Words with Friends.”
OK, we’ll discuss the 2 sides to this story later, but for now, let’s get to a more important matter. Do we really need to turn off our iPhones, iPads and other mobile devices before the plane takes off or lands? I mean are we really harming anyone by wrapping up those last-minute phone calls or listening to the last verse of Adele’s “Someone Like You?”
Well, the FAA rules are clear. Everything must be turned off before the plane pushes back from the gate or prepares to land. Experts say high radio frequency signals are transmitted from video screens on portable devices. “There is a potential for these signals to cause interference to the (airplane) radio,” Boeing Technical Engineer Bruce Donham says. There’s no hard proof that radio frequency signals have ever causing in-flight problems or a crash, according to NBC News. READ MORE
Tis’ the holiday season! Christmas is right around the corner, and finding the perfect gift for your significant other can be a hassle. Well, Travel Channel already has a few gift guides on the website, but we wanted to include a few gift-giving suggestions for the consummate gay traveler.
The Gift Guide for the Gay Guide is not only for the gay traveler, but it’s for women or that stylish straight guy who’s always on the go. Our list includes something for everyone, including skincare products, a unique relaxation mat, an emergency roadside spotlight/beacon and much more. READ MORE
The holiday season is usually a time to spend, spend, spend, but American Airlines’ parent company, AMR Corporation, has filed for bankruptcy to reduce labor costs and shed billions of dollars in debt. According to the New York Times, AMR is the last of the major legacy US airline companies to file Chapter 11.
For the past 3 years in a row AMR has posted losses, including a $471 million loss last year. Major airline companies cut their costs as a way to compete with low-cost carriers like Southwest Airlines.
So what does American Airlines’ bankruptcy mean for travelers? Well, company officials say it’s business as usual, and the airline will operate normally throughout the bankruptcy process. And you can rest easy if you’re enrolled in one of American’s frequent flyer programs. Plans to restructure the company are not expected to affect the number of travel miles you’ve clocked.
I have to admit I was a little worried at first, especially after I doing a little fare surfing last night for a cheap airplane ticket to Miami. Today, I received an email telling me not to be alarmed about my membership to the AAdvantage frequent flyer program. Part of the email states: READ MORE
By Robin Bennefield
Barbados’s appeal has nothing to do with its sizzling 80 to 90 degree temps, but everything to do who’s going there — and why. Celebrity chefs like Top Chef‘s Tom Colicchio and Top Chef Masters‘ Marcus Samuelsson have discovered the tiny Caribbean island and claimed it as their food paradise, bringing the foodies who love them along for some fun in the sun. Today marks the close of the second annual Barbados Food & Wine and Rum Festival, a weekend-long event featuring 20 food-focused activities all around the island.
Beautiful Bajan beaches and Barbados’s best resorts were the backdrop for cooking demonstrations by Colicchio and Samuelsson, as well as Ming Tsai, Mark McEwan and Bruno Loubet. On Saturday night, the chefs served up some of their best fare to well-dressed fans at a party at an exclusive polo estate, as wine, rum and champagne flowed.Tsai joked with guests as he plated and passed out tastes of ahi tuna, while Colicchio posed for pics and Samuelsson and his model wife made the rounds. READ MORE
Despite a troubled economy and high gas prices, more Americans will hit the road for Thanksgiving weekend this year, according to American Automobile Association.
This means that you or someone you know will join more than 38 million Americans on the road. AAA officials said that’s up 4 percent from last year and the highest increase in holiday traffic since 2007.
Over the last 3 years, families, who resisted traveling during the busiest travel season of the year, are more likely to rethink their decisions this year.
A recent AAA forecast said some 3.4 million — up 1.8 percent year-over-year — would fly over the Thanksgiving weekend, bringing the total number of holiday travelers to 42.5 million.
So before you hit the road or take to the friendly skies, be sure to check out our tips and info to help you prepare for Thanksgiving and the shopping crowds on Black Friday.
More Holiday Content:
Top 10 Survival Tips for Holiday Travel
Thanksgiving Travel Tips
Macy’s Parade Hotels
10 Luxury Shopping Spots
Top 10 US Shopping Malls
Have you seen Travel Channel’s website today? Well, don’t be shocked, but you’re in the right spot. We just relaunched the website to help improve the user experience and provide fans more options to delve into numerous pages of Travel content.
TravelChannel.com is the first stop to view video, slideshows and other content related to our top TV shows, including Bizarre Foods, Man v. Food Nation, Ghost Adventures and Anthony Bourdain’s new show, The Layover. Check out the new TV show features, including the Top Picks module where fans can view popular TV show videos and photos.
Just looking around the site, you’ll notice a few changes. On the new site, we’ve changed the “Places and Trips” section into 2 separate categories, “Destinations” and “Interests.” Our Interests section provides travelers with vacation ideas for the holidays, cruises and mancations, as well as info about the best hotels to stay and much more. Travelers looking for the perfect destination to get away can take a look at a few of our featured destinations — and escape to Singapore, Spain, Paris or closer to home, NYC, California or Orlando. We also offer links to options of what to do and where to stay in selected cities and countries. So check it out!
On your journey around the site you may notice a few glitches here and there, but we’re working hard to correct minor issues and improve the site over the next few months. Not only that, we will continue adding new content to TravelChannel.com, providing you and other Travel enthusiasts and fans with more content about your favorite TV shows, popular destinations and coverage of hot topics important to travelers.
So we hope you enjoy the new look and feel of TravelChannel.com. Kick start your virtual journey and travel here!
Hundreds of people lined up today to be the first to visit MLK Memorial, a national landmark dedicated Martin Luther King, Jr., one of the pioneers of the Civil Rights Movement in the 1960s. King is the first non-president and first African-American to be memorialized on the National Mall in Washington, DC.
The Memorial includes a 30-foot statue of the civil rights leader, and 14 quotes from his speeches hand-carved into a 450-foot granite wall.
President Obama is scheduled to speak at the memorial’s formal dedication on Sunday, Aug. 28. Organizers believe more than a half million people will attend the dedication ceremony this weekend.
Plan your next vacation to see other historic sites in the US. Check out Travel Channel’s History USA travel ideas.
Spots to Follow M.L.K.’s Life
Civil Rights Movement Destinations
Historic Lunch Counter Sit-In
Photo: ULTra PRT
Driverless pod cars may be coming to a city near you. The automated pods are already ferrying passengers to and from Terminal 5 at Heathrow Airport in London. The 22 new, electric-power pods can carry up to 4 travelers and their bags. They travel up to 25 mph on a 2.4 mile-stretch at the airport, and instead of a railway, lines that can be used for optical navigation.
The pods can even run during light snowfall, according to their manufacturer, ULTra PRT. Officials say the pods are cheaper than high-speed rail, and they come to you, rather than you waiting for them. They systems are already under review by airports in California, New York, Oregon, Calgary, Mountain View, CA, and Tyson’s Corner, VA, a suburb of Washington, D.C.
Take a virtual ride in one of these new pods. Do you think these new pods will be a growing trend at US airports?
Looking for a way to spice up an already exciting trip in New Orleans? Head to The Big Easy during the summer to run with the bulls. OK…not really, but you can be 1 of 100s of spectators that try to avoid roller derby chicks dressed as bulls. These women follow a predetermine route, but festival goers must be nimble to dodge these “bulls,” carrying plastic bats to beat off anyone standing in their way. Check out the website for more information.
In case you didn’t know, San Fermin is a festival celebrated in Pamplona, Spain, in honor of Saint Fermin. It starts on July 6 at noon and runs until July 14 at midnight. Over a million people travel to see the festival, including running of the bulls, the festival’s main attraction.
Take a break and satisfy you quest for thrill and adventure. Check out this fun video we found on YouTube from this past weekend. It’s not the best quality, but it definitely looks like a good time! What do you think?