By: Karin Gaudin | April 20th, 2020
Airline COVID-19 Updates for Cancellations and Changes
Will you be traveling in the near future, then here is some information regarding airline travel with cancellations and changes that will keep you informed.
In response to COVID-19, airlines continue to modify their cancellation and change policies for travelers globally. Policies vary by carrier, so it’s always best to visit your airline’s COVID-19 resource pages directly for the most up-to-date information and guidance. I have included links to those resources below, where you can find all the most recent updates from larger airlines out of Detroit and Ohio.
Written by Karin Gaudin | April 16th, 2020
“Books are the plane, and the train, and the road. They are the destination, and the journey. They are home.” - Anna Quindlen
Whether you will be traveling or lounging at home, summer is the perfect time to crack open a new book. If all this time indoors has made you more of a bookworm than usual, you will be glad to know that this summer is bringing all kinds of exciting new literary releases, from fascinating family dramas to juicy tales of romance.
Here is the list of yet-to-be-released titles you’ll want to pre-order so you can start reading the day they’re out.
Courtesy of Travel + Leisure:
By Karin Gaudin | April 7th 2020
Jamaica Farm to Table Advantage
Jamaica’s immaculate white beaches and blue waters are captivating – but there’s much more to this island. Take a step in from the coast and you will discover just how green Jamaica is and why farming is such a booming industry there.
There is a food movement in Jamaica—the reinvention of the home cooked meal and the growth of sustainable and ethical farming. In a country filled with tourism and poor replacements of foreign cuisine, this new movement brings food back to basics and celebrates the island’s natural bounty.
Jamaica’s reinvention of the home cooked meal is a long-awaited experience as tourism on the island shifts from standard resort buffets to down-to-earth dining between local islanders.
90% of Sandals Resorts' produce needs in Jamaica is harvested and purchased from local farmers. That amounts to over 5.4million pounds of produce bought from local farmers every year. The country’s rich and diverse soil means that practically every fruit and vegetable can grow here. It’s a blessing Sandals Resorts is thankful for – as the variety in produce means they can serve cuisine from the all around the world (part of the Global Gourmet offering at every Sandals resort).
Since the 1980’s, the produce used in Sandals’ Jamaican kitchens comes largely from neighboring farms. Everything from the herbs and spices, the beets and bok choy, and Swiss Chard (Don’t let its name fool you!) is grown there.
As well as the incredible diversity it provides, farm-to-table food sourcing ensures that the produce used throughout the resorts is of the highest quality. The short transit means it retains the best flavor and is as fresh as can be. So, rest assured the delicious fruits you’ll find at breakfast - mandarin orange, watermelon, starfruit and honey bananas, haven’t traveled far. By using farm-to-table fruits and vegetables, Sandals Resorts is also supporting the local economy, and is encouraging the growth of small farmers, who are passionate about quality and looking after their land. Sandals resorts pay tribute to their local farmers by displaying their names on every menu.
When you stay at Sandals Resorts in Jamaica make sure you try its native vegetables to experience the authentic flavors you just won’t find anywhere else. Breadfruit, plantain, and jackfruit are incorporated into the menus as well as the Scotch Bonnet Pepper – used to add that famous Jamaican kick! Even the chocolate, used to make the desserts and pastries served throughout the day in Café de Paris is created using 100% Jamaican cocoa.
By Karin Gaudin | April 1st 2020
REAL ID deadline extended.
The Department of Homeland Security is extending the REAL ID enforcement deadline by a year. The NEW deadline for REAL ID enforcement is October 1, 2021.
On October 1, 2021, everyone 18 years of age and older must have a driver’s license that meets new federal security requirements or other acceptable forms of identification (listed on this TSA site) to board a flight. Known as REAL ID, this new requirement is aimed at improving the safety of air travel and the security of driver’s licenses in all 50 states.
To get a REAL ID driver’s license, you must go to your state motor vehicle agency. Typically, you need to show proof of your social security number, date of birth, and U.S. citizenship, along with two different documents verifying your state of residency. But you should check with your respective driving agency in advance to ensure you take the proper documents with you to acquire the license. It took me several visits to the BMV and Social Security office to finally get mine! I had gotten married just before my renewal was due.
Travel Planner – Beaches and Dream Travel
I am seeing more non-service animal travel companions in the last year than I ever have! Would you like to travel with your dog?
Then you will need some information to help you and your dog arrive at your destination safely and happily. Several dog-friendly airlines have comprehensive pet policies, but it can be tricky keeping them all straight. To avoid showing up at the gate with your tail between your legs, I put some information together (not all inclusive) in one place, so you never have to leave your furry friend behind during your vacation again. There are other types of restrictions based on breed, animal size, destinations, carrier sizes, etc. for each airline. You will need to visit the airline site for each pet’s policy.
The below information applies to non-service animals for in-cabin travel. This is for smaller sized animals around 20 lbs. or less. Large or medium sized dogs are generally not allowed in the cabin, even crated, if they are not service animals. Pups that cannot fit in a carrier under the seat in front of you will have to ride in cargo, which, though usually perfectly safe, can be more stressful for your pup. (Brachycephalic dogs like Pugs, Pekingese, Boston Terriers, Bulldogs, etc., are more sensitive to climate and pressure changes and flying can be deadly due to their condensed respiratory systems.) In all cases, plan for additional time spent during flight check-in.
American allows 7 dogs in the cabin per flight—that breaks down to 5 allowed in coach and 2 allowed in first class. To ensure your special furry cargo gets a spot, you must call ahead. Expect to pay a $125.00 fee each way. The size requirements for pooches on American flights are twofold: 1) The dog must be under 20 lbs. including the carrier; and 2) the carrier itself must fit underneath the seat in front of you.
Spirit airlines accepts the largest of small pets in the cabin on flights within the United States with the combined weight of the pet and carrier under 40 lbs. The fee for your pet is $110 each way.
Delta wins the prize for most dogs allowed in cabin per flight—8 total—or 4 in the main cabin, 2 in business, and 2 in first class. The fee is $125 per flight, and your pooch must fit inside a carrier that fits underneath the seat in front of you. Call ahead to confirm the dimensions of the seat in front of you as Delta planes can vary. And no newborns allowed puppies must be at least 10 weeks old to make it past security.
Even though JetBlue only allows 4 dogs in the cabin per flight (that’s 4 tails, 16 paws), JetBlue shows compassion with their devotion to the four-legged traveler. From a branded pet carrier to articulated travel “petiquette”, the animal lovers over at JetBlue have put some serious thought into welcoming pets aboard. The fee for wet-nosed travelers on JetBlue is an even $100 each way, and the weight limit is 20lbs including the carrier.
For the cost-conscious, Southwest is the airline for you. Fees for bringing your pup along are only $95 each way. Southwest allows 6 dogs inside the cabin, and each must fit within a carrier underneath the seat in front of you. Branded Southwest carriers are available for purchase, and pups as young as 8-weeks can fly on Southwest.
United allows 4 pets in-cabin flying economy. A $125 fee per pet per flight applies, and your furry princess must fly the friendly skies in a carrier underneath the seat in front of you.
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