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Leader's Edge
Travel Tips

Frequent Flyer

Ground Transportation

Carry-on

 

Frequent Flyer

Air Travel

American Airlines is introducing “Amora,” a new food service at U.S. Admiral Clubs; dine in or take out soups, salads, sandwiches and snacks.

Austrian Airlines business class passengers in Washington, D.C., New York and Chicago can ride in style for free to their departing flight.

British Airways has purchased the Newark-to-Paris L’Avion, the last of the all-business-class trans-Atlantic airlines.

Cathay Pacific Airways Their exclusive new Hong Kong airport club, “The Arrival” provides a convenient place to freshen up, grab a bite to eat or a cocktail, check Wi-Fi, and shower—all in designer surroundings on arrival for First Class, Gold or above, and Oneworld Emerald passengers.

Clear Pass The registered traveler membership of Verified Identity Pass, goes out of business. Time to join the long lines in airport security again.

DayJet Corp. has officially launched its on-demand light-jet shuttle service; little bigger than George Jetson’s flying automobile, the three-passenger Eclipse 500 jets fly nonstop to five of Florida’s regional airports for no more than the price of a full coach ticket.

Delta was finally awarded its first route to China; service between Atlanta and Shanghai began March 30, 2008. Delta Asia and Latin America Flights: LAX Los Angeles is the hub city for Delta flights to Asia and Latin America; expect 100 daily departures to 48 cities in the near future. Delta expects to offer wireless Internet access on domestic flights by mid-’09 starting at $9.95.

JetBlue Their new home at JFK’s terminal five has a spacious check-in lobby, light-filled gate areas, table-service dining in the gate areas, a heart-healthy gourmet market, free Wi-Fi and a 20-lane security checkpoint—one of the largest in the U.S.

JFK Airport Reasons to fly via JFK: the new Registered Traveler program in Terminal 7 and free power poles throughout for charging your laptop, cell phone, BlackBerry.

Lufthansa has a new first-class lounge at Munich Airport; while away your layover at the gourmet restaurant, cigar lounge or bar.

Southwest Airlines New “Fly By” priority lanes will allow Business Select and Rapid Reward A-list members to get through security checkpoints more quickly in Dallas Love Field, Baltimore, Phoenix, Denver, San Francisco, Los Angeles and Orange County, Calif.

United Airlines Fee frenzy continues: United Airlines has matched US Airways in adding an extra $5 charge for travelers who pay their baggage fee at the airport instead of online.

US Airways At a quarter of a ton, no wonder U.S. Airways is jettisoning in-flight entertainment systems on domestic flights.

Virgin Atlantic Heathrow Lounge Virgin Atlantic has set a new standard for airport clubs with their recent renovation at Heathrow: A spa pool, multi-screen cinema, game room and salon provide two stories of fun.

Air Travel Tips
Left Lines Faster
Best kept secret: When flying domestically, choose the left side security line if there are two; Americans always go right.

Flyer Network Become a member of flyertalk.com where you can exchange information with other travel insiders on such topics as using your miles to upgrade, the best airport lounges and how to get the most travel perks out of your AMEX platinum card.

Cool comfort for cold air travelers. As he walked down the aisle, Captain Jim Levings would notice passengers’ futile efforts at trying to stay warm in the icebox called an airplane cabin. “The blankets are too small, they’re the wrong shape for the human body, and they do nothing to warm cold feet.” This former US Airways Express pilot knew an opportunity when he saw one and quit his day job to create the ultimate travel blanket. The micro-fleece Cabin Cuddler has a wrap-around design and a one-of-a-kind foot pocket that is so ingenious it is patented. It is cozy, lightweight and washable. Added bonus: inflatable pillow in the soft travel pack that hangs easily from your luggage. If that isn’t enough to make you whip out your credit card, perhaps Levings’ stomach churning words are: “Blankets are reused on airlines no matter how sick people may have been who used them.” $29.95 at www.cabincuddler.com or 800.788.5770

The Anti-Airline Blanket and Pillow. Stingy airlines are no longer doling out their stingy little blankets and pillows. Even worse, they’re asking fliers to pay for them. Who cares? Long the “it” travel accessories for Oprah and her ilk, designer Armand Diradourian’s cashmere travel blankets and pillows are a pampered touch for beleaguered travelers. The blanket is large enough to sumptuously wrap yourself up in the pure Nepalese cashmere while still fitting in a zippered pouch. The pillow is stuffed with duck feathers and down and also includes an eye mask. www.neimanmarcus.com

Valet Parking At Some Airports In a hurry? Airports in Indianapolis, Washington, D.C. (National), Denver, Dallas, Miami, Ft. Lauderdale, Charlotte and Los Angeles have added valet parking among other services: Return to a detailed car with a full tank.

Priority Pass Accesses 500 VIP Lounges One of the many perks of traveling in first or business class is access to airline’s private club. These retreats come in handy in today’s overcrowded airports. Unfortunately, airlines don’t have as many lounges as you think. For instance, while American Airlines serves 250 cities in 40 countries it operates its Admirals Clubs in only 37 airports. Say “Open Sesame” with Priority Pass, a little black and gold card that allows access to over 500 VIP lounges in more than 90 countries and 275 cities worldwide. Priority Pass offers access to existing lounges, including those operated by Delta, Continental and United. While different rules apply at different airports, your choice of worldwide clubs far exceeds what one airline can offer—and you are guaranteed use even if you are flying in dreaded coach. $399/year for unlimited access or free with Centurion Amex, www.prioritypass.com



TSA begins regulating private planes now flying with no security rules.

Ground Transportation

Car Rentals

Luxury Viva Las Vegas! Eminence Luxury Services is now renting Lamborghinis, Lotuses and other exotic models in the town that never sleeps. www.eminenceluxury.com or 800.309.9150

Avis
Finally an option worth checking off on your Avis rental agreement: Autonet Mobile Service; a mere $10.95 per day buys a portable wireless Internet access unit that creates a WiFi hotspot wherever you go; available in select cities.

Hertz’s Fun Collection includesCorvette Convertible. Hertz adds a fleet of Lotus Elise SC sports cars to locations throughout Italy.

Car Service

Put Carey Alliance Network into your BlackBerry; 800.336.4646 or www.carey.com and get chauffeured car services in 550 cities and 65 countries.




Rail Service
First-class passengers on Amtrak’s Acela from Boston to Washington will now be served braised short ribs and cheesy grits and other gourmet offerings created by Washington, D.C., celebrity chef, Michel Richard of Citronelle.

Carry-on

Use Apple iPhone As Your Travel Guilde Companion. No doubt about it: The iPhone is a must-have for frequent fliers. From free to $24.99, travelers can trick out their iPhones with downloads of Web apps from the Apple Store that help them get there, eat there, speak there, sleep there, drive there, shop there—wherever there is. With a flurry of finger touches, book a seat to London, make a dinner reservation at the other end and convert dollars to pounds when the bill comes. Airport Status displays a quick view of airport delays and closures across the U.S. and Canada. LocalEats lists the best 100 restaurants in the 50 largest U.S. cities along with reservation numbers and directions. There are metro system apps, currency converter apps, translation apps, even shopping apps. With travel giants like Travelocity and British Airways offering compatible apps, the iPhone is almost as necessary as a passport. www.apple.com/iphone

Travel Computer What weighs one pound, fits in your pocket and has the world’s smallest Windows Vista capable computer? The OQO Ultra Mobile PC of course! This revolutionary little black box offers anytime, anywhere high-speed access to the Internet, e-mail and networked applications, and complete wireless connectivity—EV-DO Wireless WAN, WiFi and Bluetooth.
The well-designed docking station allows you to work at your desktop with a full-sized display, keyboard, mouse and wired networking and then take applications on the road with no synchronization required. The five-inch display is readable both indoors and out, and the ergonomic backlit keyboard and capacitive TouchScrollers makes inputting data easy. $1,500, www.oqo.com

Travel Humidor And neither is a cigar travel humidor just a cigar travel humidor. Davidoff’s croc embossed leather travel humidors are the mandatory accessories for the stylish cigar aficionado. Davidoff guarantees perfect storage while traveling with your treasured Macanudos, The interior is fitted with a special internal self-regulating humidifying device, which provides a constant relative humidity of approximately 70%–75%. Small humidors hold 4–6 cigars, medium 6–10 and large 12–18. Prices begin at $690. www.davidoff.com

If it's Argentina, it must be three prongs
It is impossible for even the savviest of travelers to remember the electrical nuances of each country. 110 or 220? Two, three or four prongs? Flat or round? With our reliance on all things electronic, knowing is vital to staying connected. Tumi’s state-of-the-art USB Travel Charge Kit takes the worry out of whether you will be able to charge your laptop in Uzbekistan or Uruguay. A mere $95 buys a compact carrying case holding everything you need for a hassle-free electronic experience: an electric adaptor that provides connectivity in 150 countries; a USB power charger top to convert electrical current to a universal 5.0 volt output, the international standard for cell phones, PDAs and cameras; a USB retractable connector cable; cell phone power tips set; and car lighter adaptor. www.tumi.com

Skip the Hassle. Ship Your Luggage Luggage Free provides door-to-door service for your luggage, golf clubs, skis, strollers and all kinds of items so you can “pack heavy and travel light.” Contact the company at least 24 hours prior to pickup time and expect two-day shipping for domestic and seven to nine days for international delivery to your cruise ship, hotel, villa or office. Unlike many competitors, they wrap your luggage in a protective, heavy-duty plastic wrap and ship to more than 110 countries. Rates are by the pound. 800.361.6871 www.luggagefree.com

Power Strip At 6.25X 2.25 X 1.8 inches, Monster’s Outlets To Go Power Strip imeans no more searching for sockets in your hotel room to accommodate all the electronic gadgets you travel with these days. No more cumbersome gadgets to supposedly solve your cumbersome gadgets problem. Designed for travel “from the ground up,” the ultra flat design has four A/C outlets with a dual side layout, two wide spaced outlets on both sides. The trademarked FlatProfile Plug and FlatWrap Cord eliminate the dangling cord problem and make it easy to pack. Other inspired features: The plug lights up blue to show it is receiving power, there is a resettable circuit breaker to prevent dangerous overloads, and it has a 24K gold plug to prevent corrosion resistance and power transfer. www.monstercable.com/power/lineOutlets.asp

Carry On UK airports no longer have a one bag carry-on rule

Orvis men’s toiletry kit. Unrolled, the canvas interior sports a large, zippered compartment and three snap-close pockets spacious enough to neatly store a razor and sundries. There is a brass D-ring so you can hang it from a towel rack making everything easily accessible. But roll it up? A toilet kit worthy of Indiana Jones. Dark steer hide secured by two leather straps with solid brass buckles. Wear and tear on the road is sure to make it even more handsome with age. $210.00. Engraved brass plate extra. www.orvis.com



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