• Ryanair profits warning due to ‘lower than expected’ winter fares
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    The Independent

    Ryanair profits warning due to ‘lower than expected’ winter fares

    Europe’s biggest budget airline has warned investors that its profits will be around €100m (£88m) lower than expected for the financial year that ends in March 2019. Ryanair operates a “price passive/load factor active” strategy, which means it will cut fares to whatever level is necessary to fill its planes – currently at a load factor of around 95 per cent. It has been selling seats from the UK for as little as £9.99, which means it takes an instant loss as it is required to pay £13 in air passenger duty.

  • Skellig Michael must drastically cull tourist numbers to meet Unesco recommendation
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    The Independent

    Skellig Michael must drastically cull tourist numbers to meet Unesco recommendation

    Skellig Michael would need to cut visitor numbers by a third to meet Unesco recommendations, according to new figures. The monastic island 12km off the west coast of the Republic of Ireland attracted 16,792 tourists in 2018 – 5,692 more than the 11,000 advised by the world heritage organisation. Unesco has listed Skellig Michael as a World Heritage Site since 1996, but the heritage arm of the United Nations has strict stipulations if destinations want to hang onto their status.

  • Man has to be restrained by fellow passengers on flight to Russia
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    The Independent

    Man has to be restrained by fellow passengers on flight to Russia

    A passenger flying from Russia from Bangkok had to be restrained with tape and belts when he refused to stop drinking. The man, flying on S7 flight 582 to the Russian city of Novosibirsk, had to be restrained by fellow passengers when the cabin crew were unable to subdue the 26-year-old. Later in the flight, a cabin crew member noticed him drinking alcohol and asked him to stop, the airline said.

  • Airport security: The future could simply involve walking through a corridor
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    The Independent

    Airport security: The future could simply involve walking through a corridor

    Most passengers say that the worst part of the airport experience is the security checkpoint, in which travellers are temporarily transformed from valued customers to suspected international terrorists. The technology for “walk-through security scanning” developed by Cardiff University is derived from astronomy detection. In an airport context, hidden cameras using one-millimetre wavelength technology are installed to examine passengers from a range of angles.

  • The cheapest cities to book a five-star hotel
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    The Independent

    The cheapest cities to book a five-star hotel

    Antalya in Turkey is the cheapest city in the world for five-star accommodation, according to new research.

  • Veganuary 2019: What it's like to stay in the world's first vegan hotel suite
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    The Independent

    Veganuary 2019: What it's like to stay in the world's first vegan hotel suite

    I was all prepared to hate the world’s first vegan hotel suite.

  • Thai Lion Air comes out on top of world's fastest growing airlines
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    The Independent

    Thai Lion Air comes out on top of world's fastest growing airlines

    The world’s fastest growing airlines in 2018 have been revealed, with a Thai low cost carrier coming out on top.

  • Millions of UK drivers will need 'Green Card' to travel in EU in case of no-deal Brexit
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    The Independent

    Millions of UK drivers will need 'Green Card' to travel in EU in case of no-deal Brexit

    Millions of British motorists have been warned that they will need a “Green Card” to drive in the EU in the event of a no-deal Brexit. The Association of British Insurers (ABI) today said that holidaymakers and businesses would need to organise the extra insurance documentation a month before taking their vehicle into Europe, if the UK crashes out of the EU on 29 March without a deal. The trade body also advised that drivers crossing from Northern Ireland into the Republic of Ireland would be required to carry this Green Card.

  • Ryanair passenger entertains flight by singing with 'All of Me' by John Legend
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    The Independent

    Ryanair passenger entertains flight by singing with 'All of Me' by John Legend

    A Ryanair flight received a different kind of inflight entertainment when a passenger decided to serenade his fellow travellers. James Hazlett, a professional event singer from Drumkeerin in Ireland, stood up and sang a soulful, three-minute long rendition of John Legend’s "All Of Me" over the tannoy during the flight to Paris-Beauvais airport. “Stepping out of the comfort zone up in the sky for 2019 – Uzi my new flight attendant bestie didn’t think I’d go through with it,” Hazlett wrote in a Facebook post to accompany the video.

  • No-deal Brexit: Wizz Air warns passengers to check passports will still be valid after 29 March
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    The Independent

    No-deal Brexit: Wizz Air warns passengers to check passports will still be valid after 29 March

    Wizz Air is urging its British customers to check whether their passports will still be valid for European travel after 29 March, when the UK leaves the EU. “We want you to have a smooth journey, so please check if your UK passport is still valid for Europe after 29 March 2019. Users need to input information such as date of travel, date of birth, destination and passport expiry date.

  • Taiwanese woman caught smuggling 24 gerbils strapped to legs
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    The Independent

    Taiwanese woman caught smuggling 24 gerbils strapped to legs

    A Taiwanese woman walking awkwardly through a customs checkpoint was discovered with 24 gerbils strapped to her legs. The traveller, who had been visiting mainland China, was caught with the rodents at customs on the island of Kinmen, which is administered by Taiwan. According to the Taiwan East Coast Guard, officials noticed the woman had an ”abnormal proportion”, and was pulled aside for questioning.

  • Tampa city guide: Where to experience the hip side of Florida’s theme park capital
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    The Independent

    Tampa city guide: Where to experience the hip side of Florida’s theme park capital

    Not everyone appreciates Tampa’s hip side, or even notices it. Because although Tampa ticks pretty much all the boxes for a cool city break – walkable neighbourhoods, engrossing museums, a dynamic food scene, and tucked-away bars – it’s all geared towards those who live and work there, rather than trying to attract tourists. Norwegian launched direct flights from London Gatwick to Tampa in October 2018, opening up the city for a short break, as the starting point for a road trip down the Gulf Coast, or – if you like – as a base for exploring those aforementioned theme parks.

  • Is it safe to travel to Kenya? Latest Foreign Office advice after Nairobi attack
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    The Independent

    Is it safe to travel to Kenya? Latest Foreign Office advice after Nairobi attack

    As the terrorist attack on a hotel and business complex continues in the Riverside area of Nairobi, the British High Commission in the Kenyan capital is closed for routine business “while we respond to the incident,” according to the Foreign Office. The updated Foreign Office travel advice states: “Terrorists are very likely to try to carry out attacks in Kenya.” Specifically, it warns of “a heightened threat of terrorist attacks in Nairobi and the coast and resort areas of Mombasa and Malindi, and northern border counties”. The Foreign Office advises against all but essential travel to a large swathe in the east of the country, including everywhere within 60km of the Somali border.

  • No-deal Brexit: what are the implications for British travellers?
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    The Independent

    No-deal Brexit: what are the implications for British travellers?

    After the government’s unprecedented defeat over the EU withdrawal agreement, this is what we know from official sources about life for British travellers to the European Union from 30 March onwards. British passports will continue to be valid from 30 March 2019 until their expiry date, but will cease to have any power as European Union travel documents. “You’ll be considered a third country national,” says the Home Office.

  • The best places to eat pizza in Chicago
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    The Independent

    The best places to eat pizza in Chicago

    Until I went to Chicago I mistakenly believed that nobody loved pizza more than me. During university, I worked at pizzerias not because I needed cash but because it gave me easy access to my favourite food fix. Take Steve Dolinsky, former food reporter and founder of Pizza City USA tours.

  • Atlanta airport passengers face three-hour delays at immigration due to government shutdown
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    The Independent

    Atlanta airport passengers face three-hour delays at immigration due to government shutdown

    Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, America’s busiest, had to warn passengers to allow three hours to get through security earlier this week, amid the US government’s longest ever shutdown. “ATL is experiencing longer than usual wait times during peak travel,” it tweeted on 14 January. The hold-up was prompted by the government shutdown, now in its 26th day, during which government employees aren’t paid.

  • Cambridge hotels: 10 of the best places to stay
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    The Independent

    Cambridge hotels: 10 of the best places to stay

    The hospitality scene has thankfully developed since my student days at the University of Cambridge. The brainchild of a group of Cambridge graduates, the all-encompassing but unassuming boutique hotel is comprised of 44 sleekly decorated rooms, two popular restaurants, a full-service gym and Elemis spa, and one heck of a view from its seventh floor roof terrace, conveniently packaged into two buildings in the city’s buzzing Quayside area.

  • Ryanair passengers stranded by M11 closure offered free flight
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    The Independent

    Ryanair passengers stranded by M11 closure offered free flight

    Ryanair passengers disrupted because of the M11 closure this morning will be able to get on the next available flight, the airline confirmed this morning. The motorway, which links London and Cambridge, was shut in both directions this morning following an accident near junction eight – the exit for Stansted Airport. Stansted Airport said this morning that travellers should allow extra time when travelling to and from the airport and use an alternative route if possible.

  • Stop taking selfies with wombats, tourists on remote Australian island told
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    The Independent

    Stop taking selfies with wombats, tourists on remote Australian island told

    Visitors to a remote Tasmanian island are being urged to stop taking selfies with wombats. Maria Island, off the eastern coast of Tasmania, Australia, has launched a pledge for visitors asking them to not “chase” the native marsupials with their “selfie stick”. The mountainous island, a national park, has no permanent residents – just park rangers and lots of wildlife, which includes wombats, pademelons, Forester Kangaroos, Bennetts wallabies and Tasmanian Devils.

  • Brexit vote: Travel industry warns of higher fares and delays if UK leaves EU with no deal
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    The Independent

    Brexit vote: Travel industry warns of higher fares and delays if UK leaves EU with no deal

    The travel industry has reacted with dismay to the political turmoil over Brexit. Within minutes of the Commons vote on Theresa May’s deal, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) warned of potentially higher air fares, and reiterated that some flights from the UK could be cancelled if the country crashes out of the European Union. A no-deal Brexit would lead to a cap on flights at 2018 levels.

  • Polish Ryanair passenger flying home ends up 1,000 miles away in Malta after boarding wrong flight
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    The Independent

    Polish Ryanair passenger flying home ends up 1,000 miles away in Malta after boarding wrong flight

    An elderly passenger who thought he was flying home to Gdansk found himself 1,000 miles away in Malta when he landed. Pawel Lawreniuk, who had been visiting family in the UK over Christmas, was due to fly back on 6 January. The 75-year-old was allowed to get onto the flight and took his seat – but had no idea that he was not about to fly the 825 miles from Leeds Bradford Airport to Gdansk, but rather to the Mediterranean island of Malta almost 2,000 miles away.

  • Last Boeing 727 passenger plane makes its final flight
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    The Independent

    Last Boeing 727 passenger plane makes its final flight

    The final Boeing 727 commercial aircraft to carry passengers has made its last flight. Operated by Iran Aseman Airlines, flight EP851 did a two-hour domestic route from Zahedan to Tehran’s Mehrabad International Airport on Sunday 13 January. The jet itself was a 38-year-old Boeing 727-200 Advanced, and was the last to be flown as a passenger plane with a commercial airline.

  • Second passports: Buying another citizenship is latest investment trend for the wealthy
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    The Independent

    Second passports: Buying another citizenship is latest investment trend for the wealthy

    For the wealthy, buying a second passport can be the ultimate luxury – both in terms of convenience and an impressive status symbol. Under these schemes, individuals can obtain a second citizenship “extremely quickly” in exchange for a donation or investment, often in real estate, according to Nomad Capitalist, a company which helps clients become “global citizens”. Nuri Katz, President of Apex Capital Partners, an international advisory firm that specialises in CIPs, told Business Insider: “For a lot of wealthy people having a second or third passport is important for the ability to travel.

  • The best destinations for cheap five-star hotels
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    The Independent

    The best destinations for cheap five-star hotels

    The booking platform’s data shows that five-star hotels in Amsterdam are 42 per cent cheaper in 2018 compared to 2017, with the average price of a night in a five-star hotel this year costing just £260. In second place is Havana, Cuba. Other ways to cut costs when splashing out on luxury accommodation include travelling to a destination out of season, says Skyscanner.