• Ryanair racist rant: Whose responsibility is it when passengers get abusive on flights?
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    The Independent

    Ryanair racist rant: Whose responsibility is it when passengers get abusive on flights?

    A video filmed onboard a Ryanair flight shows a male passenger racially abusing an elderly black woman, since named as Mrs Gayle, before take-off. Shadow Transport Minister Karl Turner addressed the issue in a series of tweets over the weekend, saying: “Ryanair’s failure to deplane the alleged racist offender, handing him over to the Spanish authorities probably means that he isn’t now prosecuted. “Unfortunately because Ryanair is registered in Dublin not in the UK the alleged offence could only be tried by UK authorities if it was ‘in flight’ to the UK.

  • Elderly Ryanair passenger at centre of racist abuse storm says 'she has not been contacted' by the airline
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    The Independent

    Elderly Ryanair passenger at centre of racist abuse storm says 'she has not been contacted' by the airline

    A passenger who was the subject of a racist tirade on a Ryanair flight from Barcelona to Stansted has said she has not been contacted by the airline. The family of Mrs Gayle told HuffPost UK that they are “surprised, disgusted and hurt” that they have not heard from Ryanair since the incident happened on flight FR015 on Friday. Transport minister Chris Grayling said on Radio 4 Today this morning that racial abuse of this kind “is a crime” and “should be dealt with appropriately”.

  • South Western Rail train strike: Five-day walk-out planned this week
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    The Independent

    South Western Rail train strike: Five-day walk-out planned this week

    A reduced service will run on most of the South Western Railway network on all five days. Some routes will not have a train service or a replacement bus service. Details may change at the last minute as timetables are finalised, so check the South Western Railway website for up-to-date details of services.

  • 9 best travel wallets
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    The Independent

    9 best travel wallets

    Whether travelling for work or business, not knowing where you’ve put your passport, boarding pass, credit cards and currency, and having to rifle through your bag to find them can cause untold amounts of unnecessary stress. An easy solution is to use a one-stop-shop travel wallet which has space for everything you need for the journey, and the destination when you arrive.

  • Ryanair profits fall by 7% as airline hit by summer of strikes
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    The Independent

    Ryanair profits fall by 7% as airline hit by summer of strikes

    After a summer of strikes and other disruption, profits at Europe’s biggest budget airline have fallen by 7 per cent to €1.2bn (£1bn). Ryanair also warns: “The risk of a hard (‘no-deal’) Brexit in March 2019 is rising. It has already warned that flights between the UK and EU could be grounded temporarily if no aviation agreement is reached.

  • British Airways in ‘Trump bump’ with flights to new American destinations
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    The Independent

    British Airways in ‘Trump bump’ with flights to new American destinations

    British Airways has announced flights to yet another US state that voted for Donald Trump in the 2016 presidential election. Twice-weekly services from Heathrow to Charleston, South Carolina, begin on 4 April 2019. Sean Doyle, BA’s director of Network and Alliances, said: “You can’t help but get sucked in to the old-world charm of Charleston.

  • Netherlands issues gender neutral passport for first time in its history
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    The Independent

    Netherlands issues gender neutral passport for first time in its history

    A person in the Netherlands has become the first in the country to receive a gender neutral passport. The news follows a Dutch court ruling earlier this year, which declared that a third gender should be recognised for people who don’t identify as male or female. Leonne Zeegers, a 57-year-old from Breda, has received a passport with an ‘X’ as their gender specification, rather than an ‘M’ for ‘mannetje’ (‘male’) or a ‘V’ for ‘vrouw’ (‘female’).

  • Schedule shredded? Avianca shows how airlines should respond
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    The Independent

    Schedule shredded? Avianca shows how airlines should respond

    “So... Who are the good guys…?” That is what Tim Hayward wondered after reading my article two weeks ago about how many airlines flout Europe’s air passengers’ rights rules. A hotel was reserved, and meals paid for.

  • How to do Mexico's celebrity beach resort Tulum on a budget
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    The Independent

    How to do Mexico's celebrity beach resort Tulum on a budget

    “I’m not going to fight you,” the yoga teacher said, rubbing the bruise on his arm that had formed when I aggressively kicked him as he tried to adjust my shoulder stand. It was the last thing I wanted to hear a yoga teacher say, but I was struggling to unwind after a gruelling 18-month bike ride around the world, from London to China, then onto Canada and south down the USA and across Mexico. So I decided to end my epic trip by recovering at the yoga haven near Tulum, a collection of boutique hotels and quasi-ashrams on the Mexican riviera near Cancun, established as a wellness destination by itinerant hippies in the sixties and seventies.

  • This is how to take 16 days’ annual leave and get 34 days off in 2019
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    The Independent

    This is how to take 16 days’ annual leave and get 34 days off in 2019

    Making the most of annual leave is usually low down on the priority list for the UK’s increasingly workaholic population. Recent research by TravelSupermarket found that more than 1.4 million Brits could lose their remaining annual leave in 2018, forfeiting 8.4 days on average per person. “It’s worrying to see that so many Brits are still failing to get themselves organised and make the most of their annual leave, but the good news is, it’s not too late to do something about it,” said Emma Grimster, spokesperson at TravelSupermarket.

  • Ryanair strikes: Belgian union warns of further walk-outs before end of year
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    The Independent

    Ryanair strikes: Belgian union warns of further walk-outs before end of year

    Ryanair passengers could be set for more strike misery before the year is out. The Belgian trade union CNE said in a statement that it was putting Ryanair “on probation, as they do with their own workers”. Meanwhile, Hans Elsen, secretary of Belgium’s LBC-NVK union, tweeted that Ryanair “still does not respect local legislation”, in spite of widespread press coverage.

  • The inside story of the UK's newest tourist attraction: Bear Grylls Adventures
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    The Independent

    The inside story of the UK's newest tourist attraction: Bear Grylls Adventures

    “The scale of challenges that can be found at The Bear Grylls Adventure [is] truly mind blowing,” said TV’s favourite wilderness survival expert. The location of the Bear Grylls Adventure is as humdrum as can be. “The home of Earth’s greatest adventure challenges” is bolted on to the National Exhibition Centre, in Birmingham.

  • Gatwick Airport could almost match Heathrow passenger numbers with second runway
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    The Independent

    Gatwick Airport could almost match Heathrow passenger numbers with second runway

    Britain’s second-busiest airport has revealed plans to expand to handle 70 million passengers a year – almost matching the number currently using Heathrow – by introducing a second runway for routine use. Gatwick’s chief executive, Stewart Wingate, unveiled a draft master plan for the airport at a meeting of local stakeholders. At the heart of the proposals are plans to boost capacity on what is already the world’s busiest runway, and reconfigure the airport’s standby runway for routine use by departing aircraft.

  • 10 of the best hotels in Florence
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    The Independent

    10 of the best hotels in Florence

    Allow yourself time to browse the shops, stroll along the Arno, sip coffee and people-watch as well. To escape the throngs of tourists at night, pick one of the luxury establishments on the outskirts – they usually have tranquil gardens and Insta-perfect views of the Tuscan hills. This sleek hotel on the banks of the Arno river is an art lover’s dream.

  • Northern Rail strike: Which services are affected this weekend?
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    The Independent

    Northern Rail strike: Which services are affected this weekend?

    The next in a series of 12 days of strikes by Northern Rail staff on consecutive Saturdays is taking place on 20 October. The strikes, which have been confirmed by the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union, are part of an ongoing dispute over the role of train guards and rail safety. This will be the third round of industrial action taken by Northern Rail staff this year, with previous strikes taking place in March and June.

  • I am a travel writer and I refuse to download Instagram. This is why
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    The Independent

    I am a travel writer and I refuse to download Instagram. This is why

    Gazing out over the picturesque expanse of Lisbon from my hotel’s rooftop bar, its pastel-shaded, higgledy piggledy buildings interspersed with verdant trees, I try to take it all in. Yes, ladies and gentleman – I may be the only travel writer on the planet who doesn’t have Instagram.

  • Hong Kong's new tourism advert accused of romanticising 'abusive' behaviour
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    The Independent

    Hong Kong's new tourism advert accused of romanticising 'abusive' behaviour

    If it’s the latter, you’ll probably find the new advert from the Hong Kong tourist board quirkily endearing. The ad, first tweeted by Discover Hong Kong on 10 October, shows a girl furiously searching for her passport, worried she’s going to miss an imminent flight. Instead she finds a note from her ex (or possibly current) boyfriend, giving her a clue to follow – she must go to Wong Kee Flea Market if she wants to be able to leave the country as planned.

  • Cobalt collapse: everything you need to know about passenger rights
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    The Independent

    Cobalt collapse: everything you need to know about passenger rights

    Cobalt, based at Larnaca Airport in Cyprus, has stopped flying. The airline flew from Gatwick, Heathrow and Manchester to Larnaca, its main hub, and from Gatwick to Athens. Last-ditch attempts to procure additional funding failed, and late on the evening of Wednesday 17 October, the airline told the Ministry of Transport it would be grounded from early the following morning.

  • Hong Kong-Macau: World's longest sea-crossing bridge set to open next week
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    The Independent

    Hong Kong-Macau: World's longest sea-crossing bridge set to open next week

    The long-awaited bridge between the Chinese territories of Hong Kong and Macau will open on 23 October, making it the longest sea crossing in the world. The 55km bridge, which connects the cities of Hong Kong, Macau and Zhuhai across the South China Sea, is designed to boost economic development between the region, according to the official bridge website. According to the South China Morning Post, China’s central government’s liaison office in Hong Kong confirmed the opening ceremony for the bridge would be in Zhuhai, a city in China’s Guangdong province, next Tuesday, but provided no further details about whether the bridge would be fully operational then.

  • Ryanair crew photographed sleeping on airport floor in Malaga - but photo was staged, says airline
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    The Independent

    Ryanair crew photographed sleeping on airport floor in Malaga - but photo was staged, says airline

    A photo of Ryanair cabin crew sleeping on the floor in Malaga Airport quickly circulated online after employees were stranded there on 13 October by Storm Leslie in Portugal. Due to storms in Porto a number of flights diverted to Malaga and as this was a Spanish national holiday, hotels were fully booked. Although transferred to another lounge, the 24 crew members were not provided with food or drink by the airline during this time and were forced to share eight chairs to try to get some sleep, claimed Portuguese union official Fernando Gandra, a former Ryanair cabin crew member himself.

  • Cobalt Air collapse: Thousands of Cyprus holiday plans wrecked after another budget airline ceases operations
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    The Independent

    Cobalt Air collapse: Thousands of Cyprus holiday plans wrecked after another budget airline ceases operations

    Cobalt, the Cypriot airline, has collapsed overnight. Tens of thousands of passengers are waking up to find that their tickets for future travel to and from Cyprus and Greece are worthless. The airline told the Cyprus Ministry of Transport at 9pm on Wednesday night that it would shut down shortly after midnight on Thursday.

  • 5 best places to visit from Mumbai this long weekend
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    The Xennial

    5 best places to visit from Mumbai this long weekend

    Why haven’t you made the bookings yet is, really, just beyond us.

  • Great Western Railway experiences rail chaos as overhead line damage disrupts thousands of train journeys
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    The Independent

    Great Western Railway experiences rail chaos as overhead line damage disrupts thousands of train journeys

    Britain’s luckiest rail passenger is probably James Dove, a London lawyer. At lunchtime, he turned up by Tube at Paddington station blissfully unaware that no trains had departed all day on the Great Western Railway to the Thames Valley, the west of England and south Wales. It was the first train to leave Paddington after overhead line damage seven miles west caused all routes out of the station to be closed.

  • Boston city guide: Where to eat, drink, shop and stay in New England’s de facto capital
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    The Independent

    Boston city guide: Where to eat, drink, shop and stay in New England’s de facto capital

    Roll the idea of Boston around in your imagination. What comes to mind? Clam chowder, Irish pubs or the Red Sox? Bookish Ivy League universities, tea parties or maybe Matt Damon? The Massachusetts melting pot is all these things and more. It’s where New England was born. Where the American Revolution began. Where Facebook was invented. And it’s home of the Boston Cream Pie, too.

  • EasyJet launches app allowing passengers to book flights based on Instagram pictures
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    The Independent

    EasyJet launches app allowing passengers to book flights based on Instagram pictures

    With “Instagrammability” increasingly cited as a deciding factor in millennials’ choice of holiday destination, easyJet has cut out the middle man and launched an app that allows passengers to book flights directly based on their favourite pictures from the image-sharing platform. Instead, they can select their favourite, dreamy-looking Instagram snap through the easyJet app, which uses recognition technology to identify the location and find the nearest airport. If it’s somewhere easyJet flies to, users can book direct through Look&Book – if not, the app will recommend a similar destination based on the type of trip, such as an alternative city break or fly and flop destination.