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Admiring Greenland From The Air While Freaking Out An Air Marshal

Admiring Greenland From The Air While Freaking Out An Air Marshal Jul 8th, 2012 at 2:00PM: Intercontinental flights are usually pretty dull. The route between London and Chicago, however, is one I always look forward to. That's because it flies over the southern tip of Greenland. The airplane heads northwest over Ireland, then arcs across the North Atlantic, barely missing Iceland before crossing Greenland. I always seem to be lucky with the weather and get a clear view of the...

Instead Of Passport Stamps, Let's Collect ICTS Stickers

Instead Of Passport Stamps, Let's Collect ICTS Stickers Apr 3rd, 2012 at 1:00PM: There's this nagging question that keeps coming up every time I read an interview with a travel writer or person who spends a great deal of time on the road, and frankly it's starting to bother me: "How many countries have you been to?" The problem with that question is, visiting a country is different for every person. Some people are there for business; some are there for pleasure. Some step...

New PR Push from TSA: Checkpoint Hotties

New PR Push from TSA: Checkpoint Hotties Apr 1st, 2012 at 10:00AM: This winter, you'll find something new between the super cute kitties and inspiring nature photos that fill the calendar racks at your local bookstore. Sources say the TSA is hard at work on "Checkpoint Hotties: 12 Reasons to Opt Out in 2013," a calendar featuring their most attractive screeners. There's no gender discrimination here. Two versions of the calendar will be released, one...

The best way to fight terrorism is to ignore it

The best way to fight terrorism is to ignore it Mar 28th, 2012 at 10:30AM: Last week, the global intelligence company Stratfor finished a series about terrorism. Their final article, "Keeping Terrorism in Perspective" is especially important for travelers. The entire series is fascinating and enlightening and I recommend it highly. In a nutshell, the analysts at Stratfor say terrorism is not going to go away and can never be entirely defeated. No government, even the...

House Oversight Committee requests feedback on TSA

House Oversight Committee requests feedback on TSA Mar 24th, 2012 at 6:30PM: Public acceptance of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) and its somewhat dubious methodologies has always been tenuous among the American public. Some feel that the technology they use is the only way to keep American travelers safe. Others feel that their power and influence reaches too far. In either case, there's lots to say, and for once, congress appears to be listening. On...

Babies and first class: why is this an issue?

Babies and first class: why is this an issue? Mar 12th, 2012 at 3:00PM: Earlier this week, I saw a story about babies and first class air travel posted on Facebook. The Facebook poster asked our own Heather Poole (flight attendant, mother, and new book author!) for her thoughts on the story, and she replied, "I'm fine with babies in first class. Usually they just sleep." Columnist Brett Snyder is a frequent flier and new dad wondering if he should use miles to upgrade...

St. Bride's Church in London: a place to honor fallen journalists

St. Bride's Church in London: a place to honor fallen journalists Feb 23rd, 2012 at 1:00PM: I am not a Christian. I have read the Bible twice and have attended the services of several denominations and remain unconvinced. Despite this, any time I'm in London I go to an old church off of Fleet Street to pay my respects. Fleet Street used to be the center of London's journalism industry and St. Bride's was the journalists' church. The newspapers have since moved away to less expensive...

Knocked up abroad: applying for a baby's passport

Knocked up abroad: applying for a baby's passport Oct 24th, 2011 at 9:00AM: As my new baby girl was born in a foreign country, getting a passport was a necessity for her to even return home to America. Though Vera was born in Turkey, she's an American citizen by virtue of her parents' citizenship and entitled to a US passport. For Americans born outside the country, the US consulate issues a Report of Birth Abroad that acts as an official birth certificate and proof of US...

Does your passport photo still look like you?

Does your passport photo still look like you? Jun 4th, 2011 at 4:00PM: My boyfriend got his current passport on his 17th birthday. Now on the verge of his 27th year, the picture inside barely resembles him. He changed and grew as stamps were added, but his passport photo remained the same. His shaggy, teenage hair has morphed into a more clean cut look, and these days his face is looking a little less tan and a little more grown up. But somehow, customs agents...

Amtrak police chief to TSA: Stay off our property

Mar 9th, 2011 at 6:00PM: Our colleagues over at AOL Travel reported on a really troubling story last week involving the TSA and an involuntary security check at an Amtrak station in Savannah, Georgia. All passengers getting off a train at that station were forced to have their belongings checked, and some (including kids) underwent a pat-down. The whole thing stinks - and the TSA of course issued their usual...

SkyMall Monday: Fake TV Burglar Deterrent

SkyMall Monday: Fake TV Burglar Deterrent Feb 21st, 2011 at 1:00PM: Going on vacation should be a stress relief. Putting your job, chores and responsibilities aside for a break from your everyday routine is just what everyone needs. However, leaving your home unattended can be a worrisome endeavor. Sure, you could get a housesitter, but that requires you to trust someone not to rummage through your things, steal your valuables and seduce your cat. Whenever I go...

Make a statement at the TSA checkpoint with metal-ink undies

Make a statement at the TSA checkpoint with metal-ink undies Jan 9th, 2011 at 4:30PM: Tired of all of this business with patdowns, nude-o-scopes and grope-a-thons at the security checkpoint? Want to make a statement? Don't want to strip down to your speedo to make that statement? Well then metal ink undergarments might be in your future. Over at cargocollective.com, a series of undergarments are now on sale that use metal ink to print in their silk screening process. The ink...

Passenger arrested after refusing TSA patdown

Dec 24th, 2010 at 2:00PM: A Texas woman on her way to Christmas festivites on the west coast will be staying in the Lone Star state this season, all due to a disagreement with the security officers at Austin-Bergstrom International airport. After opting out of security screening at the checkpoint this past week, Claire Hirschkind was pulled aside and prepared for a thorough pat down. She agreed to the procedure but only if...

"Gate rape" is Urban Dictionary's Word of the Year. Thanks TSA!

Dec 24th, 2010 at 10:30AM: TSA patdowns have gotten a lot of coverage here on Gadling. The tragicomic lengths TSA officials go through to grab some booty keep us safe have created a whole Internet subculture of jokes and rage. There's even a blog called The Daily Patdown to showcase pictures of security officials looking for the next underwear bomber. Now the fine folks at Urban Dictionary have named "Gate Rape" as the...

TSA causes two international incidents by searching Indian diplomats

TSA causes two international incidents by searching Indian diplomats Dec 13th, 2010 at 8:45AM: It seems we common folk aren't the only ones who find TSA's security checks intrusive. Transportation Security Administration officials have recently caused not one but two international incidents with India by searching diplomats. India's ambassador to the U.S. Meera Shankar got frisked at an airport on December 4. She was pulled out of the line because she had brown skin and was wearing a...

Galley Gossip: Four year-old kid discusses airport security & TSA pat downs

Galley Gossip: Four year-old kid discusses airport security & TSA pat downs Nov 26th, 2010 at 9:30AM: The following video was created for parents traveling with small kids who might be a little nervous about subjecting their children to the new TSA procedures. Regardless of how you may feel about the new enhanced security measures, there's no need for children to be scared. My son will explain to them what a pat down is and even share a few tips. But first a few things the TSA would like you...

Christmas in Afghanistan: Safer than New York City?

Christmas in Afghanistan: Safer than New York City? Nov 22nd, 2010 at 2:30PM: Nothing beats Manhattan for the holidays. I'm already seeing signs of Christmas appear all over the city. Lights are already wrapped around trees on W. 58th Street, and gigantic fir candy cane sculptures are beginning to adorn the city's skyscrapers. There's no doubt that the holiday season is nothing short of magical in New York City, and if you're looking to experience Christmas away from home,...

TSA pees on Tom Sawyer

TSA pees on Tom Sawyer Nov 20th, 2010 at 8:15PM: Start with three key ingredients: Detroit, a bag of urine, and the TSA. Add an agressive pat-down at security and what do you get? A disgruntled man on a plane, soaked in his own warm pee and a national news headline! On Nov. 7th, a male passenger flying from DTW to Orlando, Florida was selected for additional security screening. A bladder cancer survivor, the passenger carried an urostomy...

Suspected bomb on airplane was a "dummy"

Suspected bomb on airplane was a Nov 19th, 2010 at 12:00PM: Yesterday's potential bomb on an Air Berlin flight from Namibia to Germany turns out to have been an American-made "dummy" used by security officials for training, BBC reports. The "bomb" consists of a detonator, wires, and a ticking clock and is put in a suitcase and through the system to measure the efficiency of an airport's security. The device did not contain explosives and was detected...

Why you shouldn't be concerned about airport x-rays and patdowns

Why you shouldn't be concerned about airport x-rays and patdowns Nov 17th, 2010 at 2:00PM: There's a serious backlash to the TSA's recent airport security policies raging through the media this month, as more and more of the flying public learn what the real meaning of "until resistance is felt" is when security officers are feeling up unsuspecting passengers' legs. The new policies, covered extensively here at Gadling and at every other travel and news outlet across the web are the...

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