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Archive by Category "News from around the World"


WASHINGTON, Jan 17 (Reuters) – The chief executives of major U.S. passenger and cargo carriers on Monday warned of an impending “catastrophic” aviation crisis in less than 36 hours, when AT&T (T.N) and Verizon (VZ.N) are set to deploy new 5G service.The airlines warned the new C-Band 5G service set to begin on Wednesday could render a significant number of widebody aircraft unusable, “could potentially strand tens of thousands of Americans overseas” and cause “chaos” for U.S. flights….However, the FAA said it “will continue to ensure that the traveling public is safe as wireless companies deploy 5G. The FAA continues to work with the aviation industry and wireless companies to try to limit 5G-related flight delays and cancellations.”The other government agencies did not comment.

For details, please click on the link:…/exclusive-major-us-airline…/,%22completely%20avoidable%20economic%20calamity%22.
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AIR FRANCE – KLM Air France-KLM hikes fares for sustainable flights:As from the beginning of 2022, French regulations will require the incorporation of an average of 1% Sustainable Aviation Fuel on flights departing from France. A “Sustainable Aviation Fuel” contribution will be included in the price of each ticket from 10 January, from €1 to €4 in the Economy cabin and from €1.50 to €12 in the Business cabin, depending on the distance.

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AIR FRANCE Flight using used COOKING OIL

Air France #AF342 A350-900 is partially using used cooking oil as fuel from Paris to Montreal.
At 3:40 p.m. today (18 May 2021), Air France Flight 342 took off from Paris-Charles de Gaulle airport’s Terminal 2E for Montreal with its tanks filled for the first time with sustainable aviation fuel produced in Total’s French plants.

Sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) is a blend of conventional aviation fuel (JET-A1) and biojet fuel made from waste and residue sourced from the circular economy (animal fat, used cooking oil, etc.).

The biofuel used for this flight was made from waste and residue sourced from the circular economy. Total produced the SAF from used cooking oil at its La Mède biorefinery in southern France and at its Oudalle factory near Le Havre, without using any virgin plant-based oil.

For more details:…/ 

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from the States to Latin America; from Europe to Asia…

RUSSIA: Spice Up Your Champagne. Write a wish down on a piece of paper, burn it, and add the ashes on your Champagne. Cheers!

GREECE: Hang an onion on the front door of homes as a symbol of rebirth in the New Year.

GERMANY & AUSTRIA: Offer lucky charms to bring good fortune e.g. pigs, mushrooms, clovers, chimney sweeps. They could be bought at a Christmas market or edible made out of marzipan.

BELGIUM: Walloon and Flemish farmers rise early on January 1st to wish a “Happy New Year” to all the cows, horses, pigs, chickens and other farm animals. That way, they’ll have a good farming year.

SPAIN: Eat 12 grapes – one at each stroke of the clock at midnight on New Year’s Eve. Each grape represents good luck for one (1) month of the coming year. Madrid and Barcelona, people gather in main squares to eat their grapes together and pass around bottles of cava.

DENMARK: Throw old plates and glasses against the doors to banish bad spirits. Also, stand on chairs and jump off at midnight to “leap” into January in hopes of good luck.

FINLAND: Cast molten tin into a container of water thus interpreting the shape of the metal after it hardens. E.g. heart/ring is wedding; ship is travel; pig is food.

IRELAND: Christmas bread banging to chase bad spirits out of the house.

SCOTLAND: New Year’s Eve celebration of Hogmanay, … Scots also hold bonfire ceremonies where people parade while swinging giant fireballs on poles, symbolizing the sun to purify the coming year.

USA: Singing “Auld Lang Syne” to greet the New Year, and eating black-eyed peas for good luck. (Song:

BRAZIL: In Brazil, everyone wears white for good luck and peace. In Latin America (e.g. Brazil, Ecuador, Bolivia, Venezuela): wear special underwear on New Year’s Eve. i.e. red color for love; yellow for money.

PANAMA: Burn effigies (muñecos) of well-known people such as television characters and political figures in Panama.

CUBA: toss buckets of water out the door to signify renewal.

PUERTO RICO: Dump a bucket of water out the window drives away evil spirits; and sprinkle sugar outside houses to invite the good luck in.

COLOMBIA: In hopes of a travel-filled new year, residents of Colombia carry empty suitcases around the block.

TURKEY: pomegranates are symbols of abundance. Smash it on your doorstep e.g. the more pieces there are and farther they spread, the more prosperous you will be. And for a little extra luck, sprinkle salt to bring peace.

PHILIPPINES: Round Shapes like coins to symbolize prosperity in the coming year. Many also wear Polka Dots for luck.

SINGAPORE: decorates its Singapore River with the wishing spheres containing the hopes and dreams of new year revellers.

JAPAN: It’s traditional to eat “Toshikoshi Soba,” a dish with long, buckwheat noodles which symbolize longevity and resilience.

Other Traditions:

MAKE A RESOLUTION: This tradition dates back 4,000 years ago. Historians believe Babylonians — one of the first cultures to celebrate the changing of the year — made promises to pay debts or return borrowed objects.

MAKE A FISH DISH: Fish is considered another good New Year’s entrée, since fish only swim in one direction — forward, like the movement of time.

OPEN THE DOORS AND WINDOWS to let the old year out, and the new year in unimpeded.

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Egypt: Grand opening for Luxor’s “Avenue of the Sphinxes”

Egypt officially opened a road lined with hundreds of 3,000-year-old sphinx statues in an evening ceremony at Karnak Temple featuring Pharaonic chariots and hundreds of performers in Luxor on November 25, 2021.

The nearly 3km (1.86 miles) ancient road, which took decades to excavate, will help improve access between the temples of Karnak and Luxor.It’s taken decades to excavate ancient walkway, which is nearly 3km long and connects two of the city’s greatest temples.The ceremony incorporated elements of the ancient festival which travelled the route each year. It also included music inspired by stories written on the walls of the temples in hieroglyphics. Egypt hopes the event will boost its ailing tourism sector, battered by political turmoil and the pandemic.


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Monuments historiques et spectacles vivantsLe président du Comité des Jeux olympiques, Tony Estanguet parle d’un “projet participatif ouvert avec des valeurs humaines très fortes”. Six kilomètres de croisière entre monuments historiques et spectacles vivants. Le projet et beau reste à régler des problèmes de sécurité un véritable défi face à tant d’affluence espérée.…/paris-2024-les-jeux…

Plus de 600 000 spectateurs sont attendus pour célébrer les Jeux dans la capitale française en 2024. Le comité d’organisation des Jeux Olympiques 2024 a présenté lundi les grandes lignes de la cérémonie d’ouverture des JO de Paris. Comme prévu, celle-ci se déroulera sur la Seine entre le pont d’Austerlitz et le pont d’Iéna. Ce sont les athlètes qui, aux alentours de 20 heures le 26 juillet 2024, donneront le coup d’envoi de la cérémonie en défilant sur la Seine.

Plus de 160 barges seront louées pour transporter sur 6 km les 10 500 athlètes et membres de délégation pour la première cérémonie de l’histoire des Jeux (hors celle des Jeux Olympiques de la Jeunesse à Buenos Aires en 2018) à se dérouler en dehors d’un stade. 600 000 spectateurs sont attendus tout au long du parcours pour acclamer les athlètes et les spectacles qui seront proposés sur des bateaux ou certains ponts tout au long du parcours.

Arrivée des athlètes place du Trocadéro

Des gradins seront installés sur les quais bas et d’autres ponts dont l’accès sera payant. Le spectacle sera en revanche gratuit pour les spectateurs qui auront pris place sur les quais hauts. Quatre-vingt écrans géants sonorisés seront répartis tout au long du parcours pour une cérémonie appelée à durer 3h30′.

La partie spectacle aura lieu à des endroits fixes du parcours ou sur de bateaux qui descendront le fleuve.

L’arrivée des athlètes se fera place du Trocadéro où sera installée la tribune officielle qui doit accueillir 120 chefs d’État ou de gouvernement.

Le lieu et le cérémonial d’allumage de la flamme n’ont pas encore été déterminés.

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Airport plans massive 76% fee increase. “Hiking charges will not help. It will not attract demand – it will have the opposite effect. If the rise in landing charges goes ahead, I know IAG will not be alone in reconsidering our airlines’ use of Heathrow.” The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) plans to allow the airport to lift the normal cap on the airport’s average charge per passenger by up to 76%.


Policy up for review in January. Hoping the aviation industry will ‘bounce back’ in the coming months, he told industry leaders the testing policy will be reviewed in early January. “We’re going to review the policy. We’ll be looking to see what we can do at that stage,” he said at the Airlines 2021 conference. The government has reportedly formulated a Covid exit plan to end self-isolation and testing by next spring. Dubbed Operation Rampdown, it is part of an extensive review of the current ‘test, trace and isolate’ policy by the Health Security Agency. The 160-page leaked dossier looks at scrapping self-isolation and ass testing as Covid will be ‘endemic’ for years, health experts say. These protocols will be rolled back by next April, according to a government source.



Still £132 million worth of unused vouchers


Governments must coordinate their responses. Travel industry groups across Europe are urging member states to align and coordinate in their responses to the current Covid situation sweeping across Europe. A broad group of travel and tourism stakeholders called on governments to better coordinate and their heath and travel policy responses to avoid re-imposing restrictions. It cites the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), which states that in the current situation, travel restrictions are ineffective in reducing virus transmission, hospitalisations, or deaths. They claim limiting border crossings would indeed not carry any public health benefit.

Up to 900,000 jobs could be lost across the EU’s tourism sector this year if travel restrictions are re-imposed this winter, citing WTTC data. It says European tourism cannot function with ‘inconsistent and constantly changing national approaches.’

Coordination is the only solution to protect the sector from the effects of prolonged uncertainty in Europe.”

The lobby groups are calling for a number of measures including move towards an individual risk-based approach, rather than the current country-to-country approach. Member states should urgently adopt a common and fully aligned approach on the eligibility as well as timing of booster doses.

The groups, made up of Airlines for Europe, CLIA,  WTTC, European Travel Commission and others, also want national governments to support the full digitalisation of the verification process by providing a simple ‘okay to travel’ message as part of the online check-in process.

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Partial lockdown in the Netherlands is set to last three weeks. Restaurants, bars and essential shops must by 8 pm and non-essential stores and other services by 6 pm. A second night of protests took place in The Hague at the weekend. There were protests in Belgium with police firing tear gas and water cannon at crowds, while an estimated 40,000 people took to the streets of Vienna to protest.


A nationwide partial lockdown commences in Austria on Monday. Austria upped the ante and has imposed a full national Covid-19 lockdown starting on Monday. It comes days after the government decided to lockdown only the unvaccinated. It is extended to a full national lockdown for up to 20 days. Additionally, everyone must get vaccinated by 1 February 2022, Chancellor Alexander Schallenberg said. Austria has record infections and one of the lowest vaccination rates in Western Europe. People are asked to work from home, and on-essential stores will close.


CHRISTMAS MARKETS SCRAPPED IN GERMANY . German states Bavaria and Saxony are cancelling all Christmas markets due to of surging Covid infections. “The situation is very, very serious and difficult,” Bavaria Premier Markus Soder said. Restrictions will amount to a ‘de facto lockdown ‘for unvaccinated people. He also called for mandatory vaccinations. The state of Saxony also announced public restrictions to start Monday the closure of Christmas markets. It includes one of Germany’s largest festive markets in Dresden. Link:


Thousands protested in Zagreb, Croatia over the mandatory use of Covid passports to enter public buildings. Violent protests in Milan and Rome saw clashes with police for the same reason. other demonstrations occurred in Switzerland, Northern Ireland and even the French Caribbean territory of Guadeloupe.

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Taste of Paris Sep. 2021

ASTE OF PARIS 2021.50 Chefs, Various Culinary Creations at Max. 12 Euro.A four day festival where you can sample some of the most delicious food in Paris in taster sized portions, served by the chefs themselves at their pop-up restaurants. Whether Michelin-starred, trend setters or future young talents, Taste of Paris warmly welcomes today’s most sought-after chefs to bring you a gourmet experience to remember.


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Alitalia Final Call

Following Alitalia’s cease of operations on October 15, Italia Trasporto Aereo (ITA) will replace the state-owned airline and will start flying from that date. As reported by Reuters, Italy reached a deal with the European Commission after months of haggling over the fate of the failing airline. ITA was originally intended to begin operations as soon as April 2021.

A key portion of the negotiation was focused on ensuring ITA was independent of Alitalia, so that it was not liable for paying back billions of euros the old carrier had received in state aid. The new airline said in a statement it will aim to raise initial capital of roughly $826 million in order to buy assets from the old company and begin operating.

Another result of the negotiations is that ITA will inherit only part of Alitalia’s flight slots, which are a major asset and proved a major sticking point in the talks. Specifically, the airline will receive 85 percent of the Alitalia slots at Milan Linate Airport and 43 percent at Rome–Fiumicino International Airport.

ITA will initially operate a fleet of 52 aircraft, seven of which are wide-body and used for longer-haul routes. The number is expected to increase to 105 aircraft (including 23 wide-body) by 2025. Eighty-one of these aircraft will be new generation, having replaced the older technology.

At the start of operations, the airline will serve 45 destinations with 61 routes, which will rise to 74 destinations and 89 routes in 2025. In the winter 2021 season, ITA will operate routes to New York (from Rome and Milan), Tokyo, Boston and Miami (all three from Rome). In summer 2022, the company plans to launch new flights to Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, São Paulo and Buenos Aires. Short and medium-haul flights will include those to Paris, London, Athens, Madrid, Amsterdam, Brussels, Frankfurt and Geneva, along with Tel Aviv, Cairo, Tunis and Algiers.

Of the 11,000 Alitalia staff, between 2,750 and 2,950 will be employed in the ITA’s aviation unit this year, rising to 5,550-5,700 by 2025.

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