On the Ground: I flew Aer Lingus round trip between Boston and Dublin, and after swift check-ins in both airports, I headed for the Aer Lingus lounges. Both have a similar décor, with the highlight being an Irish wall of fame. Boston’s lounge is small, somewhat spartan, but adequate, with restrooms located outside and down the hall. Dublin’s lounge sprawls over two floors, with an open balcony, restrooms and shower rooms. Boston’s lounge has no windows; Dublin’s has floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the gates and tarmac. Both feature a stone wall listing famous Irish events, but it’s far more dramatic in Dublin, where it soars two stories and doubles as a waterfall. Both have free WiFi, desk areas with outlets and lighting, and conversational seating arrangements; Dublin also has a quiet area, a TV area, and a second coffee bar upstairs. A small selection of self-serve, mostly packaged foods — including sandwiches, sweets and cheeses as well as coffee, tea, wines and alcohol — are available in each lounge. Dublin’s selection was more extensive and also included a hot soup. Reading material was limited to Cara, the Aer Lingus magazine, and Irish newspapers.
Pre-Flight: On both flights, attendants offered a choice of sparkling wine, orange juice or water, served in custom Waterford crystal glasses, upon boarding. Irish newspapers were available in a rack at the front of the cabin.
In-Flight: Aer Lingus flies Airbus A330s on its trans- Atlantic flights. From Boston to Dublin, dinner began with hot and cold canapés and progressed to a salad, a selection of warm breads and a choice of four entrées, all served on custom Wedgewood china. My pan-roasted Pacific cod was excellent; I wish more restaurant chefs would serve fish this moist and flavorful. Two red wines and three white wines were offered. For dessert, I opted for the fruit and cheese plate over the chocolate whiskey lava cake. After the meal was cleared, I activated the seat’s massage setting and then snuggled under a comforter and slept for a few hours on the angled-flat seat (58-inch pitch). I awoke in time for the continental breakfast.
On the return flight, lunch service began with canapés and again was followed by an appetizer, salad, choice of entrée and dessert. Although the selections on the cheese plate, served afterward, didn’t match those listed on the menu, I liked the choices. After lunch, attendants handed out comforters for those who desired to sleep. I debated watching a movie, but none appealed so I worked instead. My only disappointment was that the electric outlet at my seat didn’t work despite trying different adapters, including ones provided by the attendants. About an hour before landing, we were served an open-faced roast beef sandwich and a choice of warm scones, accompanied by jam and Devon cream, along with coffee or tea. It was a comforting last taste of Ireland.
The Experience: Business class on both flights was nowhere near full, and I easily could have changed seats if I’d desired. The seat next to me remained empty on both flights. Overall, a comfortable experience accented with better-than-expected food. Both flights departed on time and arrived early, always a plus.
- Less than 10 minutes for check-in
- Friendly and helpful agents
- Priority tagged bags
- Airport lounge
- Complimentary in-lounge food
- Priority boarding
- Helpful and courteous flight attendants
- Pre-flight beverage service
- Pre-flight newspapers and magazines
- Extensive on-demand menu
- Self-serve in-flight pantry
- Amenity kits
- Lie-flat seat/bed
- Mattress and comforter
- In-flight menu with three entrée choices
- Top-shelf wines and liquors
United Airlines announces a number of new routes.
WalletHub compared the 100 largest U.S. cities across 24 key metrics to determine the best destinations for an upcoming Oktoberfest celebration. The brand’s study found the estimated cost for an American to attend Oktoberfest in Munich, Germany, is $5,000. Munich boasts a $1.43 billion annual economic impact on Munich. During Oktoberfest, nearly 2 million gallons of beer are consumed and more than 510,000 whole roast chickens eaten.
Qantas will start using a Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner on its Sydney–Santiago route starting in late June 2020.
Welcome to Rhodes, a medieval treasure beautifully preserved throughout the centuries. Rhodes is the capital of the Dodecanese, an island ideal not only for those who want to relax, but also for those looking for an action-packed holiday! With its bright green hills, rich green valleys and uninterrupted line of golden beaches, Rhodes is truly a blessed place. “The sun island” has more sunshiny days and milder temperatures throughout the year than any other location in Greece. It is, after all, one of the country’s easternmost places and among the first to welcome summer on its impressive beaches. Add in the excellent facilities for tourism, the island’s special blend of cosmopolitan and traditional, and numerous cultural and archaeological sites, the most important being the Medieval (Old) Town, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and you’ve got the perfect holiday destination. While on Rhodes, don’t miss a daytrip to nearby Sými. An island of sponge divers and seamen, Sými used to have 30,000 inhabitants before the Second World War and was the richest island in the Dodecanese, despite its small size. Today, Sými attracts many visitors thanks to its beautifully preserved Neo-Classical buildings and the famous Archangel Michael monastery at Panormitis.
On Location Experiences makes it easy for travelers to head to London or Mexico City for upcoming NFL games. Tottenham Hotspur Stadium hosts the Chicago Bears and Oakland Raiders Oct. 6, and the Carolina Panthers and Tampa Bay Buccaneers Oct. 13; Wembley Stadium hosts the Cincinnati Bengals and Los Angeles Rams Oct. 27, and the Houston Texans and Jacksonville Jaguars Nov. 3; and Estadio Azteca hosts the Kansas City Chiefs and Los Angeles Chargers Nov. 18.
TAP Air Portugal is adding 15 new weekly flights from the United States and Canada by summer 2020, a new record for the carrier of 71 weekly flights between North America and Portugal.
Hotel brands all over the world have pushed for sustainability. For many, it began with reducing single-use plastics, like straws. InterContinental recently announced the end of in-room miniature toiletries.