Tropical Storm Sandy scrambles cruise ship plans
Royal Caribbean’s Allure of the Seas was racing along the southern coast of Cuba early Wednesday morning ahead of Tropical Storm Sandy and several other cruise ships were changing their itineraries because of the storm.
Allure of the Seas was supposed to call in Falmouth, Jamaica Wednesday, but the ship is skipping that stop and heading toward its next scheduled stop Friday at the Mexican island of Cozumel.
Jamaica was under a hurricane warning as Sandy continued to approach the island. As of 7 a.m. CDT, Sandy was 95 miles south of Kingston, Jamaica, moving to the north at 14 mph, according to the National Hurricane Center in Miami.
Concerns new Australia visa costs may scare off backpackers
The cost of a working holiday visa will go up from $280 to nearly $360 from January 2013, following a mid-year budget review.
Tourism and Transport Forum chief executive John Lee says Australia needs to be competitive in the international backpacker market.
“With 200 odd countries that people can choose between the last thing we need is a massive barrier that will then decrease the number of working holiday makers or backpackers that come to Australia.”
Mr Lee says backpackers are an integral part of the Queensland economy, with one in three bed nights taken up by backpackers and each visitor spending at least $5,500 while in the country.
Singapore Airlines to end world’s longest flights as it upgrades fleet
The world’s longest commercial flight — Singapore to Newark, N.J. — is being cancelled.
Singapore Airlines announced Wednesday that it will end its nonstop flight between Singapore and Newark, a distance of about 9,500 miles. A slightly shorter route between Singapore and Los Angeles will also end. The two routes were flown on gas-guzzling Airbus A340-500s.
The airline found the only way to make the routes profitable was by configuring the plane with 98 business class seats that sell for about $8,000 roundtrip. Other airlines operate the same plane with about 250 seats in first, business and economy classes.
Turkish Austrian rail lines joining Eurail
Turkey is poised to join the Eurail Global and Eurail Select Pass when TCDD, the Turkish railway company, becomes a Eurail Pass member Jan. 1.
Although Turkey is accessible by train from Bulgaria, travelers should be aware that construction work will affect some routes until the fall of 2013.