Classified in: Tourism and vacations, Transportation

In support of U.S. Travel Association’s “National Plan for Vacation Day”

RENO, Nev., Jan. 31, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — In celebration of National Plan for Vacation Day (NPVD), Reno Tahoe, Reno-Tahoe International Airport (RNO) and the Reno+Sparks Chamber of Commerce are working to raise awareness of the benefits of travel and inspire Americans to start planning their next adventure for 2023.

“Travel is an integral element of the human experience,” said Reno Tahoe President and CEO Charles Harris. “Travel is known to increase mental and physical health; it creates art; it builds a sense of understanding between cultures; it supports infrastructure; and it creates industry that allows the economic well-being of countless individuals, families and destinations around the world.”

According to the U.S. Travel Association, “National Plan for Vacation Day is a day to encourage Americans to plan their vacation days for the whole year, at the start of the year, and inspire them to use those days to explore the USA.”

Recent findings from Travel Nevada and Tourism Economics estimate that 43.2 million travelers generated an economic impact of $62.5 billion in 2021, resulting in $4.4 billion in tax revenue, and sustaining 355,000 jobs throughout the state of Nevada. Illustrating the economic importance of travel, a bipartisan bill backed by Nevada Senator Jacky Rosen was approved by congress in December 2022. The Omnibus Travel and Tourism Act created a new position for an Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Travel and Tourism, who will be responsible for the first-ever national strategy for travel and tourism, as well as enhancing tourism in the U.S. on a national and international level.

“As Chair of the Senate’s Tourism Subcommittee, one of my top priorities has been to strengthen Nevada’s tourism, travel, and

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Southwest to add new nonstop, daily flights between Sunport and Long Beach this fall

A Southwest Airlines plane at the Albuquerque International Sunport in December. The airline will add a new daily, nonstop flight to Long Beach in September. (Chancey Bush/Journal)

The Albuquerque International Sunport on Monday announced Southwest Airlines will soon add daily, nonstop flights to and from Long Beach Airport in southern California and Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport.

The nonstop flights are expected to get off the ground starting Sept. 5.

“We’ve already had a great start to 2023 and with the addition of this new and expanded service, it’s only getting better,” Sunport Director of Aviation Richard McCurley said in a statement. “The Long Beach route will mark the third destination in the greater Los Angeles area served by the Sunport, which gives our customers more options.”

Southwest – which has the largest market share at the Sunport at nearly 45% – began offering daily, nonstop flights between the Albuquerque airport and the Hollywood Burbank Airport in January 2022. That move came as New Mexico continued to see increases in direct spending in the local film industry. The Sunport’s airlines also offer nonstop flights to LAX, Oakland International Airport and San Francisco International Airport.

Nonstop flights to BWI from the Sunport aren’t currently active, but starting in April will be offered by Southwest once on Saturday and in July twice on the weekend, Sunport Business Development Manager Daniel Jiron told the Journal. By September, the nonstop flights to BWI will increase to daily.

“Baltimore/Washington was a route highly impacted by COVID, but we are looking forward to the resumption of daily service in September,” Jiron said.

The daily Albuquerque to Long Beach flight from Southwest will depart at 12:30 p.m. MST and will arrive in Long Beach at 1:25 p.m. PST, according

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Is Clear Worth the Cost?

Are you thinking about getting a Clear membership? The private biometric screen company lets paying members bypass part of the security line at some stadiums and the Transportation Security Administration checkpoint for identification at airports, which can often be the longest part of the line. If you’re a frequent traveler, using Clear can save a lot of time at the airport.

But is Clear worth the price? Or better yet, is it worth enrolling if you can get it for free? We break it down so you can decide for yourself.

The short version: Is Clear worth the cost?

If you travel a lot and want the convenience of skipping the line to reach the suitcase and body scanner, then Clear could be worth it. Although it costs $189 per year, you can reduce the price or even get it for free if you have certain credit cards.

How much does Clear cost?

The standard price for an annual Clear membership is $189. Unlike government programs such as TSA PreCheck and Global Entry that offer several years of membership with a single fee, Clear’s fee is annual.

On the surface, $189 is a huge price to pay for a little convenience. Thankfully, there are several ways to knock that price down to more reasonable territory (see below).

Note: Clear is available only to U.S. citizens and legal permanent residents age 18 and older with valid government ID.

What are the benefits of Clear membership?

Clear uses biometric data (fingerprints and eye scans) instead of traditional ID documents, like driver’s licenses or passports, to verify traveler identification. This lets you skip the TSA PreCheck line, which can sometimes be even longer than the regular line at the airport.

There are two parts of an airport security line:

  1. Getting your ID and

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TSA confiscated more than 6,500 guns from passengers last year

The Transportation Security Administration seized more than 6,500 guns from airplane passengers in 2022, a new record for the agency.

TSA agents confiscated 6,542 guns — 88% of which were loaded — in 2022, a 10% increase from the previous high of 5,972 firearms in 2021. By comparison, there were 1,123 confiscated guns in 2010.

Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (448) and Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (385) topped the lists with other airports in Texas, Florida, Arizona, Tennessee and Colorado rounding out the top 10.

Guns were confiscated at 262 airports in total, the agency said.

In response to the rising number of confiscations, the TSA has changed various policies, including raising the maximum civil penalty for a firearms violation to nearly $15,000 and revoking passenger’s PreCheck status for five years if they are caught with a firearm at a security checkpoint.

The agency also usually refers violators to local law enforcement.

“I am incredibly proud of our dedicated TSA employees who perform the critical task of securing our nation’s transportation systems each day,” said TSA Administrator David Pekoske. “We had a very successful year that ended with the enactment of the FY 2023 Omnibus Appropriations Bill, which included funding to bring TSA employee compensation to a level commensurate with other federal employees, in addition to funding to expand collective bargaining rights for our non-supervisory screening workforce.”

The TSA screened about 2 million passengers a day in 2022.

Passengers traveling with firearms are firearms” data-ylk=”slk:advised;elm:context_link;itc:0″ class=”link “advised to carefully read the agency’s guidelines.

“Firearms carried in checked bags must be unloaded, packed in a locked hard-sided container, and declared to the airline at check-in. Check with your airline to see if they allow firearms in checked bags,” the TSA website reads.

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Copa Airlines To Launch Flights To Austin

Copa Airlines announced on Monday that it will begin new flights from Panama City to the capitol of Texas this summer. The new route becomes the 16th US destination for the flag carrier of Panama. The news comes after the carrier announced new service to Baltimore last month.

The new flights also mark the first time Copa has flown to Austin since it started operations more than 70 years ago. The airline said the service would connect Texas with the rest of the continent through the Hub of the Americas in Panama City.


austin“Hello, Austin!

The Star Alliance Airline confirmed that flights to Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS) from Tocumen International Airport would commence on July 6th, 2023. Flights will operate four times weekly on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays, departing Panama at 9:18 and arriving at AUS at 14:04. The return flight will operate on the same days, departing AUS at 15:34 and arriving back in Panama at 20:16.

Copa Airlines’ Vice President of Global Sales and Distribution Christophe Didier said the carrier is excited to offer more connectivity to its passengers.

“We continue strengthening our network of destinations in the U.S. and incorporating this new route represents a window of opportunities to increase commerce, tourism, and cultural and educational exchanges between the state capital of Texas, Panama and our entire region. We’re pleased to offer greater connectivity to our passengers and contribute to the growth of tourism and commerce in Panama and the countries we serve.”

The Live Music Capital of the World

WalletHub recognized the city of Austin in 2019 as the second-best destination for summer travel. In the past few decades, the cosmopolitan and sophisticated city has been known as the Live Music Capital of the World for becoming renowned

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68 guns stopped at Indianapolis airport in 2022

INDIANAPOLIS — Transportation Security Administration (TSA) agents caught nearly 70 handguns at the Indianapolis International Airport in 2022.

TSA announced its officers stopped 68 handguns at security checkpoints at the Indianapolis airport last year, a decrease from the 74 handguns found in 2021.

The federal agency shared 2022 numbers for all of Indiana’s major airports.

Airport 2022 2021
Indianapolis International Airport (IND) 68 74
Evansville Regional Airport (EVV) 10 6
Fort Wayne International Airport (FWA) 8 12
South Bend International Airport (SBN) 11 5
TSA agents detect handgun in passenger’s carry-on bag at Indianapolis International Airport. (TSA)

TSA officers stopped 6,542 firearms nationwide among 262 airports. That’s an increase from the 5,972 firearms caught last year. According to TSA, 88% of the guns were loaded.

The penalty for bringing a weapon to the airport is as high as $14,950. Passengers caught with firearms also get their TSA PreCheck® eligibility revoked for at least five years.

“Bringing a firearm to the checkpoint is an expensive, dangerous mistake that far too many people are making,” Indiana TSA Federal Security Director Aaron Batt said. “Our TSA officers are doing a fantastic job preventing weapons from making their way onboard aircraft, but the responsibility falls to passengers to pack smart and keep prohibited items out of their baggage.”

You can pack a weapon in checked baggage as long as it is in a locked case separate from ammunition and declared when checking in.

For more details on TSA’s firearm rules, you can go to its website.

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TSA finds demilitarized anti-tank rifle in checked luggage at San Antonio airport

TSA agents in Texas found an undeclared anti-tank rifle stowed in checked luggage – but the owner has escaped charges after proving he demilitarized the piece.  

The 84MM Carl-Gustaf M4 recoilless rifle was deconstructed and packed in its hard-shell case when discovered during the baggage screening process in San Antonio on Monday.

The owner, who has not been publicly identified, was tracked down by airport security, and explained to them that the weapon he was carting across state borders was in fact just an exhibit item for the SHOT show in Las Vegas, Nevada. 

He was able to provide company paperwork that showed the rifle was made unusable – or demilitarized – which was later also confirmed by a TSA explosives expert. 

The anti-tank rifle was discovered by TSA agents at San Antonio International Airport in Texas

The anti-tank rifle was discovered by TSA agents at San Antonio International Airport in Texas

In a tweet posted by the agency's account, an image of the weapon, snug in its packing case, was shared, along with instructions on how to legally travel with firearms

In a tweet posted by the agency’s account, an image of the weapon, snug in its packing case, was shared, along with instructions on how to legally travel with firearms 

Still, TSA officers decided the potentially deadly weapon would not be allowed on the aircraft. A family member of the unidentified owner came to retrieve the rifle, and he was allowed to rebook his departing flight. 

The San Antonio Police Department told that no charges are pending in the case at this time. 

Transportation Security Administration rules for transporting firearms

  • Declare each firearm each time you present it for transport as checked baggage
  • Firearms must be unloaded and locked in a hard-sided container and transported as checked baggage only 
  • Replica firearms, including firearm replicas that are toys, may be transported in checked baggage only
  • When traveling, comply with the laws concerning possession of firearms as they vary by local, state and international governments
  • Firearm parts, including magazines, clips, bolts and firing pins,
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TSA confiscated record number of guns from airline passengers in 2022

Transportation Security Administration officers confiscated more than 6,542 firearms from airport passengers in 2022 — the highest number recorded since the agency’s inception. Of those guns taken at airport security checkpoints, 88% were loaded, the agency announced Tuesday.  

The confiscations by TSA mark a nearly 10% increase over the 5,972 firearms seized in 2021, which was also a record. 

The agency announced in December that it was raising the maximum civil penalty for a firearms violation from $13,910 to $14,950. 

map showing the airports with the most firearm discoveries in 2022
Airports with the most firearm discoveries, 2022

CBS News

These were the airports with the largest number of guns confiscated last year.

  1. Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport: 448
  2. Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport: 385
  3. George Bush Intercontinental Airport, Houston: 298
  4. Nashville International Airport: 213
  5. Sky Harbor International Airport, Phoenix: 196
  6. Orlando International Airport: 162
  7. Denver International Airport: 156
  8. Austin-Bergstrom International Airport: 150
  9. Fort Lauderdale Airport 134
  10. Tampa International Airport: 131  

According to TSA policy, individuals toting either loaded firearms — or unloaded firearms with accessible ammunition — may face fines starting at $3,000, plus a criminal referral to law enforcement. Those with “aggravating circumstances,” including a history of carrying loaded weapons into security checkpoints, could be forced to shell out the maximum fine. 

TSA will grant civil penalty action only after completing an investigation. If passengers violate state laws, TSA refers cases to local authorities. 

TSA is also revoking PreCheck eligibility for at least five years for any passenger caught with a firearm, and it routinely conducts “enhanced screening” for those passengers to ensure no other threats are present.

Passengers who wish to transport firearms are instructed to follow proper packing guidance for firearms in checked baggage, and declare them to their airline at check-in. 

“I am incredibly proud of our dedicated TSA employees who perform the critical task of securing

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TSA’s Record Year for Firearm Detections Saw Multiple Accomplishments

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) remained vigilant to myriad threats in 2022 and reached a new record in firearm interceptions by Transportation Security Officers (TSOs) at checkpoints. Altogether, TSOs stopped 6,542 firearms at airport checkpoints last year and 88% were loaded. TSA is increasing penalties and extending the loss of TSA PreCheck eligibility for up to five years to help ensure 2023 does not surpass 2022’s record. 

The five U.S. airports with the most TSA firearm discoveries include Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, which topped the list with 448 firearm finds. Dallas Fort Worth International Airport came in second with 385 followed by Houston’s George Bush Intercontinental Airport with 298; Nashville International Airport with 213 and Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport with 196. Orlando International Airport; Denver International Airport; Austin-Bergstrom International Airport; Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport and Tampa International Airport round out the Top 10. 

Some airports saw a lower total than 2021, indicating that the message not to bring guns to the checkpoint may be getting through, at least in some areas. For example, TSOs in Chicago stopped 85 handguns at Chicago O’Hare International Airport security checkpoints in 2022, and 38 at Chicago Midway International Airport, a decrease for both airports from 2021. Elsewhere, TSOs stopped 21 handguns at Milwaukee Mitchell International Airport security checkpoints in 2022, a decrease from the 23 guns caught in 2021. TSOs at Kentucky airports discovered a total of 116 firearms in travelers’ carry-on luggage in 2022, a slight decrease from the 2021 total of 119. North Carolina airports discovered a total of 250 firearms in travelers’ carry-on luggage in 2022, down slightly from the total of 254 found in 2021. Despite the statewide decrease in firearms, Charlotte Douglas International and Asheville Regional airports both saw all-time highs for firearm detections at their security checkpoints

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flydubai expands its network in Africa to 11 destinations with the launch of flights to Mogadishu

flydubai, the Dubai-based airline, announced today the launch of a daily service to Mogadishu Aden Adde International Airport (MGQ) from 09 March 2023. The carrier will double the frequency of flights from 01 June 2023, making it the first carrier to connect Somalia directly with Dubai and the United Arab Emirates.

Hamad Obaidalla, Chief Commercial Officer at flydubai, said: “we continue to look for opportunities to grow our network in East Africa and open up underserved markets. This region has seen significant economic growth and development in recent years, our direct flights will further stimulate the economy and help create free flows of travel and trade.”

With the start of flights to Mogadishu from 09 March 2023, flydubai expands its network in Africa to 11 destinations, providing passengers from the UAE and the region with more convenient options for travel. This includes Addis Ababa, Alexandria, Asmara, Dar es Salaam, Djibouti, Entebbe, Hargeisa, Khartoum, Juba and Zanzibar.

Sudhir Sreedharan, Senior Vice President of Commercial Operations (UAE, GCC, Africa and the Indian Subcontinent) at flydubai, said: “flydubai will offer convenient and reliable travel services between both countries. This route will be operated by our fleet of Boeing 737 MAX aircraft, offering customers the comfort of our Business Class cabin or a more customised experience in Economy Class. We are looking forward to doubling our frequency to Somalia from 01 June 2023 and further connecting the market to Dubai and beyond.”

Somalia is a country with a unique cultural heritage and a strategic location at the Horn of Africa, where the Indian Ocean meets the Gulf of Aden. Somalia is home to some of the longest and most beautiful coastlines in Africa, which has made it an important centre for maritime trade and fishing.

Flight details

Flights will operate daily between Terminal 2,

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