Travelers were hopeful last week when news came down that an FAA panel would soon be recommending that the use of smartphones be allowed during takeoffs and landings of commercial flights. Those recommendations have finally come through, but don’t get all excited and think that you’ll be using your phone to text or chat through the flight. [More]
FAA Panel: You Should Be Able To Use Smartphone On Planes, As Long As You Don’t Use The ‘Phone’ Part
Put your knives back in their wee little scabbards, folks: The temporary suspension on a new policy that allowed travelers to carry small knives in airplanes has now turned into a permanent decision. The Transportation Security Administration has announced that it listened to criticism from flight attendants and the public and decided not to ease restrictions on the little weapons. [More]
This time-lapse video of a Boeing manufacturing facility is pretty awesome, if you’re into watching “how it’s made” type stuff or if you like to see sped-up footage of people. I recommend keeping the volume down and making up your own sound effects starting at 1:03, when employees begin to test everything on the plane. [More]
A 49-year-old Scottish man with an injured arm grew angry at the crew on his US Airways flight to London last night, so he demanded they turn the plane around and take him back to Philadelphia. Instead, the pilot, who has had it up to here with you kids, landed the plane at Logan International Airport in Boston and had him removed.
Doug Herbstommer and his 10-year-old son were preparing to disembark from a Phoenix flight when a three-inch poisonous bark scorpion dropped from the overhead compartment and bit Doug on the hand. On closer inspection, five more scorpions were found nestling nearby. Passengers started to scream and jump up onto their seats. Why, is there something scary about a bunch of poisonous scorpions whose bite can cause extreme pain, frothing at the mouth, and temporary paralysis??!?
Tomorrow, a Senate committee will hold a hearing on legislation that grants passengers the right to deplane if their plane is delayed on the runway for more than 3 hours. The legislation will also require that airlines provide water, food, and bathroom facilities during delays. If passed, it will be ignored by Delta.
Snagging the best plane seat doesn’t always require an upgrade, thanks to a few handy tips from Condé Nast Traveler. Inside, how to avoid the dreaded middle seat and keep yourself entertained on the flight…
A man who paid nearly $400,000 in the late 80s for two lifetime passes from American Airlines is now suing the company, claiming they illegally revoked the passes after a supposed rule violation. The passes allowed him and a companion to travel anywhere they wanted in first class for the rest of his life, but AA canceled them after claiming he made “‘speculative reservations’ for companions.”
RyanAir’s toilet tax may not be the company’s worst idea after all, as reader Geoffrey reminds us with this mockup showing several potential fees the budget Irish carrier may well be considering.
No longer distracted by high oil prices, airlines now claim that they’re starting to focus on customer service. Two of them, American and United, think that their biggest issue is dirty planes. Wouldn’t it be great if that were true?
With $45 billion in taxpayer funds burning a hole in its pocket, Citigroup is purchasing a $50 million Dassault Falcon 7X, according to the New York Post. Apparently none of the existing jets that ferried execs to Washington to ask for bailout funds was ironic enough.
So, that plane floating in the Hudson near the Intrepid, it’s U.S. Airways flight 1549. Nobody is really sure why the plane is floating in the Hudson, but CBS speculates that “a bird strike may have caused the plane to go down, meaning a bird may have entered the engine, causing a malfunction.” The flight carrying 148 passengers and 5 crew members was destined for Charlotte, North Carolina. Everyone is reported to have survived, and a photo uploaded to Twitter shows people evacuating the A320 onto the plane’s wings and inflatable rafts. The AP reports that New York City firefighters are on the way to pluck the passengers out of the river.
Here’s a bittersweet elegy on airline travel. [New York Times]