Hello! My part of Canada had a major mobile phone outage this week – a whole *four* hours. It’s inspired me to disconnect a little more during the remainder of summer. It’s a long weekend here, which means I’ll be cooking food over fire, learning Portuguese, and trying to finish several books. Thanks for reading The Packing List, have a great week!
Travel news you can use
- Two Air Transat flights to Montreal were diverted to Ottawa, and passengers were kept on the plane for up to six hours without food, water, cooling, or information. The Canadian Transportation Agency demanded a response from the airline, filed on Friday (in secret).
- Reminder: Canada still has no Air Passenger Bill of Rights, though the Parliamentary Secretary for Transport claims the forthcoming one will effectively punish airlines into treating passengers well. (Don’t count on it.)
- Westjet delayed the launch of its ultra-low-cost carrier until 2018. Fine by me, this race to the bottom isn’t serving the industry or passengers well.
- Air Canada made $300 million in *profit* last quarter, up 61% from a year ago. Remember that the next time one of their desk agents shrugs and says they can’t do anything for you.
- New images show just how close an Air Canada flight was to hitting other planes on the taxiway in San Francisco. Watch at your own risk.
- Tighter security in the European Union’s Schengen area means British travelers (and everyone else from outside of the zone) are waiting in long lines for enhanced passport control.
- Following the foiling of a recent airplane-bombing terrorist plot, airport security at Australia’s airports has escalated, causing huge lines and long waits for everyone. New security rules are coming.
- Iceland is having another busy tourism year, but things are now getting problematic. A French cruise ship broke the law this week when it let passengers disembark in a protected wilderness reserve and tromp all over the place without permission.
- US veterans of wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are trekking, hiking, paddling, and cycling across America to deal with their post-traumatic stress disorders. As a person who walks long distances for the mental health benefits, I read this article and couldn’t stop thinking about it.
- One writer’s plea to fellow Americans: stop saying you’re from Canada. For what it’s worth, I have a test for this: pronounce the letter Z.
- A group of Welsh priests was thrown out of a Cardiff pub when they were mistaken for a stag party. The error was corrected and the priests were promptly welcomed back. Now, Brains, the pub chain, is renaming one of their ales to celebrate their friendship: Thirsty Priests. This is not expressly travel-related, but I’ve laughed about it all week.
Planning your next trip
- Here’s one for the data geeks: the “unusually popular” travel destinationsfor each state in the United States.
- I made my annual check-in on the rules and options for a Round-the-World airline ticket. I’ve been noodling how and when to do this kind of trip: possibly departing one end of Canada, going around, returning at the other end of Canada, then taking the train across the country.
- In the course of writing this newsletter, I set up a new savings account to save for this trip and a spreadsheet for a budget. On paper, I can retire in 10 years, so if I save $50 bi-weekly until then, the trip is largely funded.
Packing lists and tips
- Help! I’m looking for a small travel soap case that will hold half a bar of soap. This item doesn’t seem to exist and I can’t find a suitable thing to repurpose. If you have ideas, please let me know at email@example.com!
- We are in peak summer travel season, so here are some tips for families packing light or carry-on only.
- My friend Rhia is preparing for vacation, and did an amazing job of getting her family of four packed – Marie Kondo-style. This is their bag for 10 days:
- I talked about Marie Kondo packing tips back in May. If you are inspired to follow Rhia’s lead, check out the tips.
Zipping the suitcase
Tell me what you think about the newsletter by sending a message directly to firstname.lastname@example.org. Find out more about where I travel here on http://bitesizedtravel.ca. See you next week!