Holiday Travel Forecast: What to Know Before Hitting the Roads or The Skies
Americans are gearing up to hit the roads and the skies for the holidays -- and airlines are bracing for a packed travel season.
Here's what you need to know before hitting the road or heading to the airport:
TSA Plans to Expand Facial Recognition Technology at US Airports
The Transportation Security Administration is reportedly planning to expand its facial recognition identification system to airports around the United States next year.
According to The Washington Post, the technology cross references live photos of travelers at the airport with images on their driver’s license or state identification card to positively identify the person.
The identification system—dubbed Credential Authentication Technology with Camera (CAT-2)—was first implemented at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport near Washington D.C. and expanded to 16 domestic airports across the U.S., including facilities in Dallas, Los Angeles and Orlando...read more
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced its intent to extend the REAL ID full enforcement date by 24 months, from May 3, 2023 to May 7, 2025. Under the new regulations published to execute this change, states will now have additional time to ensure their residents have driver’s licenses and identification cards that meet the security standards established by the REAL ID Act. As required by the law, following the enforcement deadline, federal agencies, including the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), will be prohibited from accepting driver’s licenses and identification cards that do not meet these federal standards...learn more
Frontier Airlines Drops Its Customer Service Line
Frontier airlines will no longer let customers call a phone number in order to speak with a live agent. And while the budget airline is known for its cost-cutting measures, most major airlines still operate customer service lines.
Customers will instead have to rely on other ways to contact the airline: a chatbot on its website, a live chat available 24/7, its social media channels and even WhatsApp, according to Frontier spokesperson, Jennifer De La Cruz, who confirmed the news to NPR on Saturday.
The change, said De La Cruz, "enables us to ensure our customers get the information they need as expeditiously and efficiently as possible." She said the airline found that most customers preferred communicating through online channels....read more
American Airlines Will Make It Harder to Earn Frequent Flyer Status Next Year In Loyalty Program Shake-up
Members of American Airlines
’ loyalty program will have to spend more to earn elite frequent flyer status next year, part of a slew of changes the carrier announced Thursday.
Starting in March, AAdvantage members will need to earn 40,000 so-called Loyalty Points to earn Gold status, up from 30,000 in the current earning year. Gold is the lowest elite tier of American’s program, and it comes with perks like free upgrades — when those seats are available...read more
Alaska Airlines officially becomes first U.S. airline to launch electronic bag tag program Today, we became the first airline in the United States to launch an electronic bag tag program, which will enable guests to tag their own luggage through the airline’s mobile app before they even reach the airport. This week, 2,500 Alaska Mileage Plan members will begin receiving their electronic bag tag. Those elite status members included in the first wave of the program are guests who have traveled in the last 12 months, checked-in at least one bag and were among the first to register to use the device...read more
Southwest schedule extended: Book now to save on flights through Aug. 14, 2023
If you have yet to book flights for next spring, now is an excellent time to snag Southwest flights.
Although some carriers allow you to book flights about 11 months in advance, Southwest extends its booking window in batches of only a few months at a time.
Previously, you could only book Southwest flights through the beginning of March. But this morning, Southwest extended its schedule through Aug. 14, 2023. This makes now an excellent time to snag a good deal on Southwest flights next summer.
Here’s what you need to know about maximizing Southwest’s most recent schedule extension...read more
The Four Weirdest Items That Will Get You Stopped at TSA This Holiday Season
IF you are travelling home for the holidays, you may want to double check what you put into your hand luggage.
There are a number of items that will get you stopped at airport security, many of which you may not realize.
Here are four items to make sure you put into your checked suitcase next time you fly this holiday season...read more