On the Ground: With LAX’s Tom Bradley International Terminal now open after major reconstruction, traffic around the terminal is much more organized. Inside the terminal, I was second in the business-class line for China Southern Airlines, and the friendly staff performed a quick check-in. I was disappointed the new SkyTeam VIP lounge inside the newer terminal had not yet opened; however, the original lounge offered lots of available club chairs, electrical outlets and finger foods for guests to enjoy. About 45 minutes before the flight, I explored the new impressive terminal and made my way to Gate 148.
Pre-Flight: Business- and first-class passengers were the first group to board. The Airbus A380’s business-class section was on the upper deck, and we were shown to the escalator inside the gate and greeted by the staff. My flight attendant helped me stow my heavy carry-on and whisked away my coat. I was offered a towel and beverage within minutes of being seated. As the aircraft holds so many passengers, the loading time takes about 45 minutes. I put on my slippers and began to explore the seat area I would be occupying for the next 14 hours.
In-Flight: Seats on the upper deck are in a 1-2-1 configuration. My window seat gave me my own private section, with a large tabletop to my left and two storage bins on my right, allowing me to keep my laptop, iPad, phone and magazines within reach. The multi-use electrical outlets were perfect for keeping my gadgets charged during the flight. With a 13-inch screen, the entertainment system offered a large selection of new Hollywood releases, classic movies, TV shows, music and a live map to chart our flight progress. As I have sensitive ears, I was impressed with the high-quality, noise-canceling headphones, comfortable enough to use the entire flight. The 180-degree lie-flat seat was also comfortable, with several positions to choose from, allowing space to spread out for sleep or the perfect angle for working on my laptop. The seats included a thin mattress, a warm cream-colored quilt and two pillows.
Just 30 minutes in the air, the crew served dinner. I opted for hot green tea at first, and from a smaller selection of wine, I tried the Chardonnay from France. The appetizers were a selection of fish, including a tasting of shrimp, crab and baked scallop. For dinner I chose the Maine lobster tail, which tasted delicious alongside the jasmine rice. I enjoyed an extra cup of tea before bed for good measure.
Getting ready for bed, I explored the amenity kit. The attractive mint-green bag held an assortment of Bvlgari products, including a great mini bottle of perfume, lotion, lip balm and, of course, the essentials like a toothbrush and cotton swabs. A green silk eye mask was a favorite, and I took it home.
The Experience: The entire staff aboard the A380 to Guangzhou was friendly and attentive, keeping a close eye on passengers to make sure we had extra water bottles, snacks and pillows before bedding down. As Guangzhou is a centrally located destination and a hub to China and Asia, China Southern offers a great way to get you there.
[item check=yes]Less than 10 minutes for check-in[/item]
[item check=yes]Friendly and helpful agents[/item]
[item check=yes]Priority tagged baggage[/item]
[item check=yes]Airport lounge[/item]
[item check=yes]Complimentary in-lounge food[/item]
[item check=yes]Priority boarding[/item]
[item check=yes]Helpful and courteous flight attendants[/item]
[item check=yes]Pre-flight beverage service[/item]
[item]Pre-flight newspapers and magazines[/item]
[item check=yes]Extensive on-demand entertainment[/item]
[item check=yes]Amenity kits[/item]
[item check=yes]Lie-flat seat/bed[/item]
[item check=yes]In-flight menu with three entrée choices[/item]
[item]Top-shelf wines and liquors[/item]
As harmful to the environment as air travel is, some airports are taking measures to become more environmentally conscious. One example is Chattanooga Metropolitan Airport in Chattanooga, Tennessee, where an adjacent solar farm powers certain airport operations.
United Airlines announces a number of new routes.
Ryanair will soon start its first round-trip Georgia flights. The flights, which start this November, will connect the capital Tbilisi (TBS) to Milan Bergamo (BGY) four times weekly and the western city of Kutaisi (KUT) to Bologna (BLQ) and Marseille (MRS), both twice weekly. Then, in April, Ryanair will add twice weekly flights between Tbilisi and Cologne (CGN).
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.
Attend one of the most acclaimed fall events, Autumn at the Arboretum, in Dallas. In its 14th year, the annual event is known as one of the best pumpkin festivals in the country, with its creative displays featuring more than 90,000 pumpkins, gourds and squash. The event takes place at Dallas Arboretum, Sept. 21 –Oct. 31. Alongside thousands of pumpkins, guests glimpse 150,000 autumn flowers across the 66-acre space.
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.