Airport News Alert - North America.

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New York (AirGuide - Airport News North America) Nov 4, 2012

This weekOs best travel bargains Land Hundreds of bed-and-breakfasts in the United States and Canada are offering a free night to active and retired members of the military on Veterans Day, Nov. 11. More than 600 inns have already signed up. Inns are filling quickly, but more are being added daily. Value varies by property. For example, Au Fil des Saisons near Saguenay, Quebec, which had five rooms available at press time, typically costs $105 a night; Vineyard Harbor Motel in Vineyard Haven on MarthaOs Vineyard, Mass., with six rooms available, typically starts at $139 a night. For a list of participating U.S. inns, go to www.bnbsforvets.org. For Canada, go to www.bbcanada.com/bb_vets.cfm. With Starwood Hotels & ResortsO Better Tomorrows promotion, good through Dec. 31, receive up to 40 percent off every second night at properties around North America and Latin America. Two-night minimum required, but deal also works on longer stays N for instance, book four nights and receive discounts on two nights. Deal applies to all Starwood brands. For example, at the Westin Resort & Spa in Los Cabos, Mexico, pay $558 for two nights in an oceanfront Royal Beach Club room in early December, down from $698; add about 17 percent taxes per night. At the Sheraton San Diego Hotel and Marina, pay $637 for four nights (vs. $796) in mid-November, plus about 13 percent taxes per night. Restrictions apply, such as hotels requiring a Thursday, Friday or Saturday arrival. Info: 866-924-8746, www.starwoodpromos.com/bettertomorrows. Ask for promo code ZB4. Sea Save more than 50 percent on Victoria CruisesO winter sailings on ChinaOs Yangtze River. The Three Gorges Highlights trip, which travels three nights from Chongqing to Yichang or four nights on the reverse itinerary, now starts at $470 per person double, with taxes, a savings of $510. Depart Thursday or Sunday in January or February. Add $200 per person to special Chinese New Year celebratory cruises departing Feb. 10, 11, 13 and 14. Tips are an additional $24 per person. Info: 800-348-8084, www.victoriacruises.com. Air Southwest is holding a sale, with fares from $79 each way, including taxes. From BWI Marshall, the $79 fares apply to nine destinations, including Pittsburgh, Cleveland and Islip, N.Y. Total round-trip air to Cleveland, for example, is $160; other airlines are matching. Travel Monday through Saturday. Sale runs through March 6; holiday blackout dates apply. Ten-day advance purchase required. Reagan National and Washington Dulles are not included in the sale. Book by Nov. 15 at www.southwest.com. Package Intrepid Vacations is offering a package from New YorkOs JFK to Athens. The Greece trip is $1,238 per person double and includes round-trip air, five nights at the four-star Acropolis Select Hotel, welcome dinner, city tour, transfers and taxes. Depart December, February or March. Thirty-day advance purchase required. Package would typically cost about $120 more per person. Info: 800-505-5497, www.intrepid-vacations.com.

Icelandair Holidays is offering an Iceland Northern Lights and Glacier Walk package for l ess than $1,000 per person double. The deal includes round-trip air from Washington Dulles to Reykjavik; three or four nightsO lodging; a Northern Lights and glacier ice walk tour, including use of ice pick and crampons; two-course dinner at Hotel Anna Restaurant; admission to an exhibit at the Country Hotel Anna; and all taxes. For example, a couple departing Dec. 4 pays $1,784 for four nights at the Hilton Reykjavik Nordica. Depart through Dec. 11 or March 24-31. By comparison, airfare to Iceland costs from $850. Info: 800-223-5500, www.icelandair.us. Nov 2, 2012

Dallas-Ft. Worth voted top airport to be stuck in Hurricane Sandy shuttered airports and caused the cancellation of almost 20,000 flights to, from and within the U.S. Travelers donOt really have a choice where they get stranded, but if they could be stuck at any airport, it would be Dallas-Ft. Worth, according to a recent poll. Some 5,000 members of online travel-dating site MissTravel.com weighed in on which airports they wouldnOt mind spending some extra time in, and Dallas-Ft. Worth topped the list. Pittsburgh International Airport was the second most popular choice. Airports in the Midwest were also favorable, with General Mitchell International Airport in Milwaukee (#4), Chicago OOHare International (#5), Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport/Wold-Chamberlain Airport (#7) and (#8) Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport all making the list. Given the circumstances, it is no surprise that no airports in the Northeast made the top 10. Check out the complete list below. Those surveyed based their selections on things like cleanliness, availability of extra amenities and entertainment, as well as the food/shopping selection. "In order to ease frustration, travelers need to be distracted and entertained while waiting," says Brandon Wade, MissTravel.comOs CEO. MissTravel.comOs top 10 airports to be stranded in 1. Dallas/Ft Worth International Airport 2. Pittsburgh International Airport 3. Austin-Bergstrom International Airport 4. General Mitchell International Airport (Milwaukee) 5. Chicago OOHare International 6. Orlando International Airport 7. Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport/Wold-Chamberlain Airport 8. Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport 9. Miami International Airport 10. Nashville International Airport Nov 2, 2012

TSA security randomness has benefits and drawbacks The Transportation Security Administration employs a number of changing tactics to boost safety across the country's airports. The seeming inconsistencies, some of which are detailed in this piece, are both a benefit and a source of frustration for passengers.E Nov 1, 2012

TSA contracting focus group to meet Nov. 6 The Transportation Security Administration is joining forces with the nonprofit Washington Homeland Security Roundtable on a series of focus groups that will examine TSA's contracting and acquisitions processes. "The intent is to identify policies, regulations, and practices that provide little or no added value, in terms of cost, schedule or risk, as well as those policies, regulations, and practices that could be improved to help reduce costs and acquisition cycle time," according to a notice published by the TSA.E Nov 1, 2012

How to use TSA system for expedited security checks The Transportation Safety Administration and U.S. Customs and Border Patrol have joined their security databases to help expedite security pre-screening for trusted travelers at participating airports throughout the U.S. The simplified procedure involves entering the PASS ID number included on each traveler's government-issued Global Entry, Sentri or Nexus card into the "Known traveler number" space when making a flight reservation. This generates a barcode on the traveler's boarding pass that the TSA can identify to route the traveler to an expedited screening line.E Nov 1, 2012

Air travel begins to recover following Sandy Passengers stranded at Raleigh-Durham International Airport by Hurricane Sandy are finally heading home. While the storms effects in the Triangle were limited, many travelers were struck here after airports in the Northeast shut down. And some Triangle residents trying to get home were stranded in the Northeast as well. "Yeah, good to be home," said Molly Parks, who returned from Philadelphia...

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