Just ask the passengers snared by Thursday’s air-traffic control strike in France — or aboard Virgin Atlantic’s flight 11 from Heathrow to Boston last week. Last Thursday, thunderstorms at the Massachusetts capital’s Logan airport meant Virgin’s Boeing 787 was diverted to Bangor, Maine. Because of a shortfall in available pilots apparently caused by poor scheduling, Europe’s biggest budget airline has upset the plans of one-third of a million people.
Toronto’s ravine systems snake their way from the Don River and extend in almost all directions, from east of the city centre and into the outer suburbs. Toronto has the largest ravine network in the world, and to uncover the history of the city is to go deep into our urban forest: after all, it is in the centre of the Don Valley where the bricks that built the city were made. “Our entire city was built around them,” says Jason Ramsay-Brown, a ravine expert and author of Toronto’s Ravines and Urban Forests.
Qatar Airways has unveiled the world’s first double beds in business class on its flights from London to Doha. Passengers flying from London Heathrow on the airline's daily Boeing 777 service will be able to create double beds by removing a privacy screen between seats . Qatar Airways plans to roll out Qsuite across its business class fleet, with flights to Paris and New York set to be next.
Hurricane Maria has swept across the northern Caribbean, causing huge disruption to travellers. As with the previous major storm, Hurricane Irma, airlines have cancelled and re-timed flights to and from the Caribbean. The Foreign Office said: “The US Virgin Islands were severely impacted by Hurricane Irma and are still recovering.
Thomas Cook pilots are to go on strike on Saturday (23 September) in a dispute over pay. The British Airline Pilots' Association (Balsa) said five days of talks had failed to reach an agreement and the industrial action will now go ahead. The airline has offered pilots a 1.5 per cent pay rise but Balpa is pushing for a rise that is in line with inflation, which is currently at 2.9 per cent. The union is also demanding better travel conditions for staff.
The Parisian park may well be celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, introducing a new Star Wars land and a Pirates of the Caribbean ride that features Johnny Depp in honour of this landmark event, but to my mind it still isn’t a patch on another European theme park of a similar age – PortAventura. Situated in the Spanish hills outside the popular holiday resort of Salou, PortAventura has come a long way from the small water park that first opened 20 years ago. It’s now comprised of three theme parks, numerous hotels and restaurants, and even has its own beach club on site.
Not every passenger on Virgin Atlantic’s daily late-afternoon flight from Heathrow to Boston has enjoyed a smooth journey recently. Last Thursday, flight VS11 diverted to Bangor, Maine – hundreds of miles short of its final destination – because of bad weather at Boston. As passengers checked in, they were handed a letter which began: “Your flight to Boston will be operating via Manchester today.
As passengers seethed about Ryanair’s industrial-scale cancellations, and social media sizzled with rumours about the airline’s staffing and financial health, getting answers from Europe’s biggest airline has proved unusually difficult. Demand between Easter and the beginning of September is much stronger than the rest of the year – and this is also when airlines such as Ryanair make the vast majority of their profits. Accordingly, airlines encourage pilots to take the bulk of their leave in a single, month-long block between September and March.
Fitness trends are born in California. Luckily, for those who like their hols to feature a healthy mix of fitness and pleasure, just 40 minutes’ drive south of LA sits Newport Beach. Add in some of the most stunning landscapes in California, perfect for trekking, cycling and running, plus one of the world’s most famous surf spots, and you’ve got all the ingredients for a perfect wellness break.
It happened to Neha Arora as a child. Barring the odd school picnic or the visit to grandparents, she has no fond travel memories. Three decades ago, India was not the friendliest place for travellers with accessibility needs.
Ryanair has revealed it will cancel 164 flights over the next three days, potentially affecting 30,000 passengers. By far the worst affected airport is Stansted, its leading base. Six domestic flights to and from Stansted have been cancelled: four serving Edinburgh, and two serving Glasgow.
Around 30,000 Ryanair passengers have had their weekend travel plans wrecked by short-notice flight cancellations. The budget airline grounded more than 160 flights on Saturday and Sunday, blaming an administrative foul up in planning annual leave for flight crew. The vast majority of UK cancellations were to and from Stansted airport.
Up to 400,000 Ryanair passengers could see their flights cancelled over the next six weeks as the airline plans to cut as many as 50 departures a day. Ryanair says it is a bid to improve its system-wide punctuality, and has apologised “to the small number of customers affected by these cancellations”. The airline says it is cancelling "up to 50" flights a day until the end of October because its punctuality has slipped from nine out of 10 flights to eight out of 10 over the past fortnight.
The budget airline, which is Europe’s largest, said the move was to “improve its system-wide punctuality”. The airline is changing its April-to-March annual leave calendar to a January-to-December model. As a result flight crews are seeking to take their full allocation of holiday, leaving Ryanair’s most ambitious summer schedule ever short of staff.
The first few hundred passengers to learn about a fierce lineside fire were aboard the Caledonian Sleeper. Three minutes later the overnight express to Edinburgh and Glasgow set off from London Euston. The train reversed and passengers spent the night at 0mph at a platform in Euston rather than travelling to Scotland at 100mph.
Jet lag can leave you feeling confused, exhausted and grouchy - it’s not much fun for anyone involved. It’s known as “grounding” or “earthing” yourself, and Dave Asprey, a self-proclaimed ‘biohacker’ who founded the health food diet Bulletproof, believes it’s the secret to resetting your body clock after flying. Asprey claims that long haul flights disrupt the electrical charge in our body’s water cells, and it’s that that causes us to feel jet lagged.
Four airlines and an airport: that was the line-up on Wednesday when the concept of easyJet Worldwide was launched. It’s an intriguing and unprecedented concept: easyJet, Norwegian, WestJet and Loganair teaming up with Gatwick airport to offer a sort-of network that, they hope, will rival the network carriers and their hubs.
It’s safe to say that as a flight attendant you get to meet a wide range of people. In a discussion on Reddit, flight attendants have been revealing just how many weird and wonderful things they see as part of their jobs. One flight attendant shared a surprising and very sad story of a woman dying on a flight, but her daughter being “totally fine” about it: “She had her mum’s head in her lap and was stroking her hair.
Berlin is one of the most interesting European cities to visit, with something to excite everyone. With so much to see and do in Berlin, and a number of different districts each offering a different side to the city, it helps to do a bit of research beforehand into where to go and what to expect. The perfect guide book will not only give you the lowdown on the best monuments, bars and restaurants to visit, but will also help you spontaneously fill a spare afternoon while you’re there by telling you about some lesser-known gems you may otherwise have missed.
From the outside, the Pullman looks like any other well-kept historic building in Riga. The Pullman opened in the Latvian capital last summer, spread across a big, colourful edifice that dates back to 1789 and has had a new extension added on. Pullman may be part of hotel mega-chain Accor, parent company of other accommodation brands such as Novotel and Sofitel, but there’s plenty of individuality here.
According to the IUCN, 31 per cent of cactus species are currently critically threatened with extinction, making them more endangered than mammals and birds. At the sprawling Desert Botanical Gardens, just 15 minutes from downtown Phoenix, Arizona, more than 50,000 cactus and succulent plants are housed over 140 acres of Sonoran desert. Here in the greenhouses, labs, herbarium and public gardens, rare and endangered cacti species are nursed back to health, cultivated, propagated, catalogued, and saved.
Around 150,000 passengers planning to use one of Britain’s busiest railway stations today have been urged not to try to travel. A huge fire involving gas cylinders broke out shortly before midnight at a timber yard beside the West Coast main line near Watford Junction. Network Rail said: "The emergency services have worked through the night to control the blaze.
The Arab Spring was triggered by the despair of a Tunisian street vendor named Mohamad Bouazizi at the humiliation meted out by officials of a corrupt regime. Ten days later President Ben Ali fled to Saudi Arabia, a traditional retirement home for deposed dictators. As pressure for human rights rippled across North Africa and the Middle East, Tunisia experienced a peaceful transition to a pretty good approximation of democracy.