FAA Reviewing Passenger Use of Electronic Devices

May 21, 2013 by  
Filed under Features

With electronic devices firmly entrenched as part of daily lives for many travelers, airlines are under pressure to allow passengers to use their tablets, laptops, smartphone, e-readers and other devices without restriction during flights. In the United States, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has been working on a set of regulations to govern the use of these devices on airplanes, but is reportedly far from ready to put any new rules into action, with the delay being attributed to the authority’s desire to put into place a concise set of regulations to deal with current, and even future, technology.

A year ago, the industry working group set up by the FAA noted that, faced with evolving electronic technology, the FAA was reviewing the use of personal electronic devices, excluding the use of cellphones, on aircraft. A full year later the FAA appears to be no closer to resolving the issue and this has drawn sharp criticism from some quarters. Among the critics is Senator Clair McCaskill (D-MO) who recently announced her plans to circumvent the FAA and introduce legislation allowing passengers the freedom to use their electronic devices throughout a flight.

The increasing number of different types of electronic devices brought by passengers onto airplanes is adding to the difficulty of drafting a set of standard regulations. The FAA working group needs to include all these devices and take into account the different modes of operation they offer. Currently a number of electronic devices include an “airplane mode” option, which generally means that they do not send or receive wireless signals, but this is not necessarily standard across all devices with this option. Also, there is concern that FAA’s desire to have rules that will apply to devices of the future may not be realistic given the speed at which technology is developing. The group has apparently also noted concerns over expecting already busy flight attendants to police the use of various devices.

The initial concern with the use of electronic devices on flights addressed, among other things, the issue of possible interference with electronic signals pilots rely on for safe flight. To date, the FAA reportedly has no record of aviation accidents caused by interference from personal electronic devices. Flight attendants note that their main concern is that passengers should not be using electronic devices when the safety measures are presented at the beginning of the flight, as they need to hear and understand what should be done in the event of an emergency.

The FAA anticipates a final report from the working group later this year, with rule changes being implemented by the end of 2013.

Grand Canyon West Rim Air Adventure 2010

April 20, 2010 by  
Filed under Events

To enjoy a unique day trip adventure, book a Grand Canyon West Rim Air Adventure excursion, which is bound to be very memorable. Visitors can be collected by shuttle bus from any hotel in Las Vegas and be transported in a fixed wing aircraft to the Grand Canyon West Rim. The flight lasts approximately forty minutes, which is followed by a ride in a helicopter, which descents to the floor of the canyon. Visitors will also be treated to a boat ride, a tasty barbeque lunch and a visit to the Eagle Point Indian Village.

Inquiries in regard to this magnificent day trip can be made at your hotel, or the local tour operator. The trip is available every day, although departure times are subject to change, depending on the season.

Date: 30 April 2010
Venue: Grand Canyon
City: Las Vegas
Country: United States of America

Eindhoven Airport

February 9, 2009 by  
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Eindhoven Airport is an international airport that can be found in the fifth largest city of the Netherlands, offering all visitors a traditional Brabant welcome. Although Eindhoven is one of the oldest cities in the Netherlands it is also a city that has adapted to the modern era, making it quite a young and dynamic city to welcome any traveler coming in or going out of the country. The Eindhoven Airport contributes greatly to the city as well as to the country by improving the regions accessibility by airplane. The airport is the second largest in the country, dealing with 1.6 million passengers annually.

The airport feels strongly about respecting all different aspects of the social and physical environment in and around the airport as it continues to achieve excellence in its commercial and developmental operations that it is involved in. The Eindhoven Airport continues to grow and develop as an international airport to keep up with the increasing flow of passengers and at the same time provide all the necessary facilities and services needed to keep an airport running smoothly. The airport provides scheduled flights to various places all over the world as well as to all Europe’s main airports where passengers will be provided with additional services once they have reached their desired destination.

Over the years there has been a continuing demand, specifically by leisure passengers, on the Eindhoven Airport to provide increasingly more stops at more countries and holiday places. With that the airport has taken up the challenge and continues to expand the route network and keep up-to-date with technology. More and more holidaymakers are finding out about the convenience and hospitality that the Eindhoven Airport tries to provide and so a definite increase of this type of passenger is being realized.

Eindhoven Airport has a single tarmac runway, measuring 3 000 meters in a 04/22 direction. Situated just off the A2 motorway, the airport is easily accessible. Other forms of transport to and from the airport include buses, and the Line 401 and Line 145(bus rapid transit).

Kingsford Smith International Airport

February 9, 2009 by  
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Located in the suburb of Mascot, Sydney, the Kingsford Smith International Airport is Sydney’s main airport. Also known simply as the Sydney International Airport, the airport serves as a major hub for Qantas airways. Sydney Airport has the distinction of being the largest and busiest commercial airport in Australia and as such, is the most likely point of arrival for most international aircraft. Sydney Airport handles more than 26 million passengers in a year and this number is rising steadily. Thus the airport is often upgraded and remodeled to cater to the ever-increasing numbers. It should also be noted that Sydney Airport is the oldest continually operated commercial airport in the world.

The Kingsford Smith International Airport was officially opened in 1920 and it was then known simply as Sydney Airport. It had an low elevation of 19 ft (6m) and its runway, which was only built a few years later, only had a gravel surface. In 1953 the airport was renamed as the Sydney Kingsford Smith International Airport after Charles Kingsford Smith who was an Australian aviator. Not long afterwards, the need for expansion was seen and before long a new terminal was opened. The north-south runway was also expanded, making it one of the longest runways in the southern hemisphere. Today the airport has two terminal buildings and three paved runways. The longest runway is 13 018 ft (3 968 m) in length. The other runways are 8 297 ft (2 529 m) and 7 998 ft (2 438 m) in length.

The Sydney Kingsford International Airport is a public airport and is operated by the Sydney Airport Corporation Limited. It mainly serves the surrounding area of Sydney, though it is also Australia’s premier airport for international flights. Though comparatively small, the airport is designed to cater to the needs of those using it. Both terminals offer great shopping experiences and restaurants. Some of the services and amenities available include ATMs, public toilets, showers, baby change rooms, children’s play areas, a chemist, internet facilities, a smoking area, trolleys, wheelchairs and parking for the disabled.

Stockholm-Arlanda International Airport

February 9, 2009 by  
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The Stockholm-Arlanda International Airport is the biggest airport in Sweden, and is located approximately 28 kilometers outside of Stockholm. During a year, the Stockholm-Arlanda Airport assists and accommodates approximately 17 million passengers, but has a capacity to deal with 25 million passengers a year. Originally, the airport was built in 1959 for practice flights, but in 1960 the airport was turned over for civilian use and commercial airline traffic.

There are four terminals at the Stockholm-Arlanda International Airport. All international flights and their passengers are taken care of by Terminal 2 and Terminal 5. Terminal 3 and Terminal 4 are used for all domestic flights and passengers. During 2003, a central building was erected, namely the Arlanda North. This new building connects Pier 14 with Terminal 5. Arlanda North is utilized by the international flights that are managed by Star Alliance and SAS. The building that stands between Terminal 4 and Terminal 5, is called Sky City, offering a shopping center for passengers and serving as a railway station for the main line. In total, between all the terminals, the Stockholm-Arlanda Airport has 64 passenger gates. The airport also has five hangars, five cargo terminals and three runways. This makes the Stockholm-Arlanda International Airport extremely impressive in size and the facilities that they offer. The three runways that are used for both take offs and landings are the 2,500 meter 08/26 runway, the 3,301 meter 01L/19R runway, and the 2,500 meter 01R/19L runway, with the first two being concrete and the latter runway being asphalt.

The facilities available at various airport terminals include restaurants (of which there are approximately 33), a wide variety of stores, ATM’s, banks, bars, a pharmacy, a chapel, conference facilities and hotels. The lounges are all fitted with power points, so travelers are able to recharge their cellular phones, or work on their laptops. Parking areas around the terminals are available in different categories such as long and short term parking, multi-storey parking garages, indoor and outdoor facilities.

Transportation to and from the Stockholm-Arlanda International Airport is well taken care of. The Arlanda Express runs between the Stockholm Central Station and the Stockholm-Arlanda Airport. Bus services are available and it is the cheapest way to travel. Taxi drivers are required to ask a set price when leaving the airport, to ensure that all taxis are asking the same fare. Car rental agencies such as Hertz, Europcar and Avis operate directly from the airport.

The Stockholm-Arlanda Airport has gone to extreme measures to ensure that the airport is accessible to everyone, including disabled travelers. The Sky City building has text telephones available for hearing-impaired passengers, and all restrooms, lifts and parking areas are accessible to wheelchairs.

Italy Airports

February 9, 2009 by  
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Italy is a beautiful and romantic country with exquisite food and scenery to be enjoyed by you and your partner. You will be kept busy during your stay in this historically rich country. Italy is famous worldwide for its opera houses and is very much a part of their culture. There are also many different monuments and museums to visit if you want to soak up a bit of the history and traditions of Italy. Where ever you visit there are many hotels and cheap lodgings available and of course the cuisine is something we have all experienced in one way or another, but the authentic Italian cuisine cannot be replaced by our home made versions. Depending on the time of year you visit it would be good to research what events and festivals are on the go.

Something else you will be keen to look into is the airports in Italy that you will be using and will no doubt be a popular form of transport during your stay. The Bologna Airport provides both domestic and international flights and is only 6 kms northeast of Bologna. The Amerigo Vespucci Airport is quite a small airport near the city of Florence with only one runway. If you are visiting the capital you will probably use Rome Leonardo da Vinci (Fiumicino) Airport, Italy’s biggest airport, 30kms from Rome.

In Milan there are three airports to choose from, the one being the Malpensa International Airport, which is near Milan in the Varese province. In the Capodichino district you will find the Naples International Airport, which serves Naples and the surrounding areas. Trieste Airport or Ronchi dei Legionari Airport is found near Trieste, the largest city and capital of the Friuli Venezia Giulia region. This little airport won’t provide many amenities but the queues are short. The Palermo Airport is 35km from Palermo city providing many facilities to the passenger.

Airports in Italy:

Auckland Airport

February 9, 2009 by  
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As the largest airport in New Zealand, Auckland Airport is also the busiest. It sees roughly 13 million passengers pass through its doors each year and this figure is likely to increase steadily in years to come. Its cargo port contributes the second largest amount to New Zealand’s economy each year and it carries about 70% of the country’s international travelers. Though the site was used as a runway by the Auckland Aero Club long before the time, the Auckland Airport was officially opened in 1966. Its geographical location was preferable to that of Whenuapai and it soon took over from this older airport in the north-western side of the city. Today the Auckland Airport is one of New Zealand’s major economic contributors as it provides thousands of jobs and is one of the biggest employers in the region.

The Auckland Airport is located in Manukau City in Auckland and it mainly serves the nearby Auckland city center. It is a public airport and it is operated by Auckland International Airport Limited. The airport is situated at a very low elevation of 23 ft (7 m), though this does not negatively affect the aircraft in any way. It is also used as a central hub for Air New Zealand and most of the flights leaving from the airport are related to this company. The airport has two runways. The first is 11 926 ft (3 635 m) in length and has a concrete surface. The second is 10 197 ft (3 108 m) in length and features an asphalt surface. The airport building itself is very modern and clean, though it should probably be noted that the airport collects an ‘Airport Improvement Fee’ from its passengers in order to keep the building in tip-top shape.

Many visitors arriving in New Zealand do so with the intention of mountain-biking across the country. For those that bring their own bicycles, there is an assembly and dismantling facility located in the arrivals area just outside the international terminal. All cyclist should keep in mind that it is illegal to cycle without a helmet in New Zealand. The Auckland International Airport also provides several other great services such as an inter-denominational chapel, a baby-changing facility, a variety of children’s entertainment facilities and Internet kiosks. Visitors can also make use of restaurants, shops, a massage service, showers and a first aid service. Flight announcements are both displayed and announced on facilities located throughout the terminal.

Tullamarine International Airport

February 9, 2009 by  
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The Tullamarine International Airport is also known as the Melbourne International Airport or the Melbourne Tullamarine International Airport. Locals prefer to call it Melbourne Airport or just Tullamarine. The Tullamarine International Airport is located approximately 25 kilometers from Melbourne, and is second to the Sydney International Airport, in regard to air traffic and passenger traffic. Melbourne International Airport remains operational twenty-four hours a day, even though there is not much air traffic in the early morning hours. It is mostly the cargo carrying aircraft that are in operation between midnight and four in the morning.

The Melbourne Tullamarine International Airport accommodates in the region of 20 million passengers a year, and has remained within the top five recognized airports in the world. Over the years, the Tullamarine Airport has achieved many successes and collected even more awards, for their outstanding service and world-class facilities. Awards that have been received, include the Australian Construction Achievement Award the was received in 2006, being the winner in the category for Industry Innovation and Best Practice Category in 2005 and the 2003 IATA Eagle Award. The Melbourne Airport has also been recognized by the Australian tourism industry, for its contribution, by winning the Australian Tourism Award for General Tourism.

The Melbourne Tullamarine International Airport operates from three terminals that are all located in one building. Terminal 1 is used exclusively for domestic flights and houses airlines such as Qantas Link, Qantas, Jet Star and O’Conner. Terminal 2 is for international flights and the airlines that operate from this terminal includes Air China, Freedom Air, Emirates, Pacific Blue, Qantas, United Airlines, Vietnam Airlines, China Eastern Airlines, Thai Airlines and Austrian Airlines. Terminal 3 is also a domestic flight terminal and is home to Virgin Blue and Regional Express.

The airport manages the air traffic through their competent air traffic control room, technologically advanced systems and two asphalt runways. Runway 09/27 is 2 286 meters in length, while runway 16/34 is approximately 3 657 meters in length.

Transport to the Melbourne Tullamarine International Airport or from the airport to Melbourne is available in the form of buses, taxis and rental cars. Rental car companies are located at the airport for convenience and there is also a large parking area for those who decide to drive. Facilities that are available to passengers within the terminals include medical facilities, banking, foreign exchange services, hotels, disability-friendly estrooms, terminals, parking area and drop off and pick up zones, snack bars, news stands, book stores, gift shops, restaurants, bars and jewelry stores.

Bangkok International Airport

February 9, 2009 by  
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The New Bangkok International Airport or as it is also known the Survarnabhumi Airport is located 25 km from Bangkok in Bang Phli district’s Racha Thewa. The name ‘Survarnabhumi’ means the ancient kingdom and was chosen by King Bhumibol Adulyadej. The airport serves mainly Bangkok city in Thailand and for the moment is concentrating mainly on commercial flights as its conducting limited operations for the moment. The Survarnabhumi Airport has only been open since September 2006 due to many delays that they have experienced.

The airport took over the older Don Mueang International Airport, which use to be the main commercial airport in Bangkok, and all its flights. The revamping of the airport has included 132.2m air traffic control tower, one of the worlds tallest and an airport terminal that stands at 563,000 m2, the second largest building. However that may not be the end of the Don Mueang International as the Survarnabhumi airport has experienced many problems since its opening and so it may need to be closed for repairs while the Don Mueang airport handles all the flights.

The Survarnabhumi International Airport is a public airport and is operated by the Airports of Thailand Public Co Ltd. The airport is 1.4 meters or 4.6 feet above mean sea level and has two asphalt runways between 3,700 and 4,000 meters long. From the airport there plans to be a high-speed rail for the use of passengers and hopes to be completed by the end of 2007. From the city to the airport passengers will be able to get fast and efficient transport, taking them a maximum of 15 minutes. For the moment while the high-speed rail is still being completed passengers can still make use of the suburban commuter train service.

An alternative means of transport is the airport express buses, of which the airport operates a total of four. The air-conditioned buses take passengers from the first floor terminal all the way to down town Bangkok and to other various destinations. The airport express bus can be a little pricey, so you can also take the City buses but you will be required to take a shuttle bus to the bus terminal before you can be taken to your destination. Taxis and limousines are available but can work out to be very expensive. The taxis work off meters but before you leave for your destination you will be given a surcharge of 50 baht, another 300 to 400 baht, depending on where you are going and charged for tolls, which is about 60 baht. A part from a heafty payment you will also have to endure a 40 to 60 minute trip into the city depending on the traffic.

Leonardo da Vinci International Airport

February 9, 2009 by  
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Leonardo da Vinci International Airport, also commonly known as Fiumicino International Airport, is one of the largest public airports found in Italy with more than 30 million passengers having flown from there in 2006 alone. The airport was named after the famous Leonardo da Vinci and can be found in Fiumicino from where it serves the whole of Rome.

From the historic city center of Rome to Leonardo da Vinci airport is about 34 kilometers or 21 miles by car. It is also accessible by train, which is available at the airport terminal, as well as by cab but that can be quite expensive. The Leonardo Express trains run twice an hour for twenty-four hours to the Termini Station in Rome. The regional trains leave the station every fifteen minutes but will stop at all the train stations between the city center and the airport, making the journey so much longer.

There are four runways used at the Leonardo da Vinci airport all of which are asphalt and are between 3,309 and 3,900 meters long. Aeroporti di Roma provided all the ground handling services for the airport up until 1999 when it formed the Aeroporti di Roma Handling, which was later sold to Flightcare.

Terminal areas in the airport were upgraded between 1991 and 2008. This included the construction of Terminal 5, particularly for the American carrier flights check-in and it deals with some 950 000 passengers per annum. The Leonardo da Vinci International Airport is a major hub for Alitalia, Air Alps and Blu-Express.

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