What’s hot: August 2013

By | Category: Travel tips & opinions

CD-Traveller tells you what’s hot in the travel world. This month it pays to be a  jet setting pet, but it’s bad news for Borneo and Beijing airport



Saying guten tag to Germany
German rail company, Deutsche Bahn, has been given permission to run its trains through the Channel Tunnel. Translation? Travelling between the UK and Europe will get even easier come 2016 (when the new service is expected to start). The four and a half hour route will travel from London’s St Pancras station to Frankfurt via Brussels, Rotterdam, Amsterdam and Cologne, three times a day.


Mobile phones on flights

Restrictions on using electronic gadgets once planes have landed will soon be a thing of the past: British Airways have announced that passengers will be be allowed to turn their mobile phones on once the plane has touched down and cabin crew have given the go ahead. The move comes hot on the heels of a draft report by The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) which called for the easing of restrictions on the use of gadgets on flights.


Pampered pooches

£47,000 is the eye watering figue that some (barking mad) dog owners are spending on their pet’s vacation at the Paw Seasons dog hotel (www.thepawseasons.co.uk).  Here Fido can enjoy pampering at Harrods, a reiki masterclass, dog friendly films like Lassie and 101 Dalmatians, a surf lesson and even a run along the beach with Commonwealth and World 400m hurdle champion, Dai Greene.


Doggy miles
It’s clearly a good month for pooches: Virgin has revealed that frequent flier dogs can collect points when they fly domestically with Virgin Australia. Elsewhere Virgin Atlantic has a Flying Paws scheme whereby jet setting pups receive an on-board pet pack containing gifts (think a decadent dog tag) and a pet passport. Woof!


Checking out the corpse of Chavez
The corpse of Venezuela’s former leader, Hugo Chavez, is to be embalmed and displayed in a glass tomb at the Museum of the Revolution – a military museum in Venezuela near the palace where the socialist leader ruled. “We have decided to prepare the body of our Comandante President, to embalm it so that it remains open for all time for the people. Just like Ho Chi Minh. Just like Lenin. Just like Mao Zedong,” said Vice President Nicolas Maduro.



The Foreign Office has issued a warning against visiting parts of Sabah in Malaysian Borneo after an outbreak of violence between Malaysian troops and militants. Parts of the Danum Valley – where the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge took a a high profile trip last year – were declared a no go zone.


Beijing airport

Beijing’s International airport has been named and shamed as the world’s least punctual airport. Fewer than one in five flights leave on time, with more than 40 per cent of flights being delayed by at least 45 minutes. Beijing’s southern sibling, Shanghai, didn’t fare much better, with only 29 per cent of flights departing on time. By contrast Tokyo Haneda was hailed the most punctual airport, followed by Tokyo Narita.



Travel + Leisure US has declared that the New South Wales capital is now “too expensive”. As a result, despite Sydney’s beautiful beaches and attractions, the city failed to make it into the Top 10 Cities list in the World’s Best Awards. Sydney limped in at number 12 – it’s lowest ranking since 2000.


EasyJet’s hand baggage allowance


The orange airline has slashed its hand luggage allowance by 37 per cent. Why? Apparently easyJet can no longer guarantee overhead space for the bags and briefcases that passengers carry onto flights. Flying with easyJet this summer? Fret not: if you’re bag is bigger than the new size, you won’t be forced to fork out money but your bag will be stored in the aircraft’s hold instead.


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