Flexible travelers can find budget-friendly summer vacations

Summer travel plans have been met with sky-high prices that may be out of reach for some. However, resourceful travelers who can embrace flexibility are finding ways to enjoy a vacation and stay within budget.

Chelsea Hampshaw was worried that the surge in summer travel to Europe would make her family’s annual trip to London unaffordable. Then she spotted a deal.

“I was searching. We just weren’t gonna be able to go this year, flights were so expensive and so sparse. And so as soon as this popped up, it was like ‘Oh, I guess we can make this happen this year,'” Hampshaw said.

While it required a seven-hour drive from South Carolina to Washington’s Dulles Airport, a flight on a lesser-known airline and arrival at an airport 30 miles outside London, the family of six managed to save around $6,000.

“Pretty big difference,” Hampshaw said.

Airlines are creating some new options to help make European trips more affordable for their passengers.

Norse Atlantic Airways, a Norwegian low-cost carrier, just announced service from Washington in May. The airline offers both premium and economy class, allowing travelers to choose the price point and level of comfort and amenities they prefer.

Its first flight to London’s Gatwick Airport sold out, said Norse Atlantic CEO Bjorn Larsen.

Earlier this year, JetBlue announced that direct flights from New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport to Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris would begin on June 29.

Overall, airfares to Europe are currently at a six-year high, averaging about $1,200 per person, according to Hopper, a travel website.

Hotel prices are also up, with a 37% increase compared to last year, especially in popular destinations like Rome and Madrid.

But despite the inflationary pressures affecting travel plans for many, AAA still anticipated a summer

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Man stopped with handgun at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport

Jan. 10—AVOCA — Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officers at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport on Monday prevented a man from New Milford from bringing his handgun onto his flight.

TSA said the .380 caliber gun, which was not loaded, was tucked into the man’s laptop bag and was detected when the bag entered the checkpoint X-ray machine.

When the gun was spotted, TSA officers notified the police. The man told officials that he did not realize that he had his gun with him because he thought he had lost the gun several months ago. He said that he forgot that he had placed it into his laptop bag.

“If you own a firearm, you need to know where it is at all times,” said Karen Keys-Turner, TSA’s Federal Security Director for the airport. “That’s a vital part about being a responsible gun owner. Even if someone has a permit to carry, they still are not permitted to bring a gun onto a flight. This man now faces a stiff financial civil penalty — a penalty that was recently increased to up to $15,000 for a weapons violation at an airport. I commend our officers for continuing their vigilance in helping to ensure that weapons are not carried through a security checkpoint.”

TSA reserves the right to issue a civil penalty of up to $15,000 to individuals who bring weapons with them to a checkpoint. Civil penalties for bringing a handgun into a checkpoint can stretch into thousands of dollars, depending on mitigating or aggravating circumstances. This applies to travelers with or without concealed gun carry permits because even though an individual may have a concealed carry permit, it does not allow for a firearm to be carried onto an airplane. If a traveler with a gun is a member of TSA PreCheck,

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On-Site TSA PreCheck enrollment initiative launches at Portland International Airport for ticketed travelers

Portland, OR, Jan. 31, 2023 — IDEMIA and Portland International Airport (PDX) announced today that IDEMIA’s new TSA PreCheck enrollment initiative for ticketed travelers is now live.

Ticketed travelers flying out of PDX can enroll in TSA PreCheck with no need for an appointment. It takes five minutes or less, and most travelers receive their Known Traveler Number (KTN) within three to five days. IDEMIA also provides traditional TSA PreCheck enrollments, by appointment, at more than 550 locations nationwide.

IDEMIA TSA PreCheck Enrollment Ambassadors are stationed just past the North Security Checkpoint, by Gate E2. They are in easy-to-spot uniforms with specially equipped carts to enrolltravelers in TSA PreCheck. This service is available to ticketed travelers only, and offered Monday through Friday from 5 a.m. to 1 p.m. local time. Travelers will need to bring a government issued photo ID and proof of citizenship (e.g., passport, birth certificate) or proof of lawful permanent residency. Since this enrollment is past the security checkpoint, it is only available to ticketed travelers on the day of departure.

TSA PreCheck enrollment is easier than ever and more people can take advantage of a smoother airport security screening process that lets them keep their shoes and belts on and leave their compliant liquids and laptops in their bags. Children 12 and younger may join a parent or guardian who has the TSA PreCheck indicator on their boarding pass in the dedicated lanes. In December, 91 percent of TSA PreCheck passengers waited less than five minutes in line.

“On-site TSA PreCheck enrollment at PDX is convenience at its best. Enroll in TSA PreCheck as you are waiting to board your flight, it’s as simple as that. In some cases, you may even be able to get your KTN number in time for your

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Keep those shoes on, a TSA PreCheck pop-up enrollment is coming to Albany airport

COLONIE — Air travelers know that security checkpoint lines are one of the more unpleasant parts of boarding a flight. And with fears of COVID still out there, the crowded conditions add a level of anxiety for some.

But next month, Capital Region fliers will be able to easily enroll in the federal Transportation Security Administration’s popular TSA PreCheck program at Albany International Airport from Aug. 8 to 12 at a temporary pop-up site inside the airport terminal.  

TSA PreCheck is more valuable than ever during the pandemic because it reduces touchpoints with other people.

The application process allows U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents to enroll directly in TSA PreCheck. It’s an expedited screening program that allows travelers to leave on their shoes, light outerwear and belt, keep their laptop in its case and their 3-1-1 compliant liquids/gels bag in a carry-on, in select TSA airport checkpoint screening lanes.

Hundreds of airports participate in TSA PreCheck nationwide and more than 80 airlines participate in the program. 

“Enrolling in TSA’s PreCheck program enables Albany travelers to receive expedited screening at our security checkpoint as well as a rapid and efficient screening experience at congested airports and major hubs when returning to the Capital Region,” said Philip Calderone, CEO of the Albany County Airport Authority.

Travelers may make an precheck“appointment online and complete the process in-person or show up as a walk-in from Monday, Aug. 8, to Friday, Aug. 12, from 9 a.m. to noon and 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. in the airport’s ground level near baggage claim.  

The application fee is $85 for a five-year enrollment in the program, according to the TSA website.

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