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 The Tactical Traveler for 2002

joe Year-End Briefing for Business Travelers
The TSA wants you to leave checked bags unlocked; Detroit/Metro finally gets its new hotel; bankrupt United charges you to stay loyal; American and Continental ditch the $100 standby fee, but Delta stands fast; US Airways allows online award bookings; expect delays at Phoenix Airport in January; and much more.

December 12 Briefing for Business Travelers
Delta slashes SkyMiles elite benefits; British unions lift their holiday strike threat at London airports; hotels are changing brand names and chain flags with startling rapidity; American raises checked-baggage fees; United drops the $100 standby fee and says it will revive its West Coast Shuttle; and much more.

December 5 Briefing for Business Travelers
Delta names its new low-fare carrier "Song"; weather as airline dispatchers see it; American sells elite frequent-flyer status; the TSA is phasing out at-the-gate boarding passes; a tip for winter flying; a San Francisco jury sanctions airline discrimination; and much more.

Special United Briefing for Business Travelers
When to book United--and when to book away; the government's stinging criticism of United's management; Dow Jones pulls United from the Transportation Average; thoughts on the turmoil at the United-led Star Alliance; the best places to keep up with breaking news; and much more.

November 21 Briefing for Business Travelers
Shopping in Europe's Christmas markets; MileDonor.com helps you give back miles for a good cause; how--and where--to give the gift of travel; how to turn points and miles into presents; links to more stories on holiday travel strategies; and much more.

November 14 Briefing for Business Travelers
Beware confusion over hotel holiday rates; British airports face a series of one-day strikes in the next 45 days; Hilton Garden Inn adds free high-speed Internet access; frequent-travel plans drop bankrupt MCI as a partner; the Homeland Security bill means less security for air travelers; and much more.

November 7 Briefing for Business Travelers
National Airlines craps out in Vegas; the TSA expands federal security screening to 300 airports; Air Canada launches a three-hour regional-jet flight to Atlanta; HBO says you can't watch The Sopranos in bars on the road; and much more.

October 31 Briefing for Business Travelers
Unfair fares on code-share carriers; AirTran continues to expand; international airlines add flights while U.S. majors contract; Canada warns some of its nationals about travel to the United States; and much more.

October 24 Briefing for Business Travelers
The TSA will make the November 19 screening deadline--sort of; the airlines begin slashing frequent-flyer benefits; Midwest Express reduces food service; the "fat-flyer" update; and much more.

October 17 Briefing for Business Travelers
The airlines fly into the Twilight Zone; Laptop Lane lives again; Priority Pass adds 27 Continental clubs; Amtrak drops its service guarantee; the TSA moves into New Orleans, Orange County, Milwaukee and San Diego; CNN International launches a monthly business-travel program; and much more.

October 10 Briefing for Business Travelers
The miserable economics of buying or transferring miles; America West bucks the big boys on use-it-or-lose-it tickets; USA Today launches a daily travel newsletter; Four Seasons opens a tiny hotel in Tokyo and a Hilton Garden Inn opens in the Napa Valley; Delta is charging for booze in international coach; Hertz says there is no such thing as free miles; hotel bedtime stories by phone; and much more.

October 3 Briefing for Business Travelers
The silver lining in the US Airways-United code-share deal; the AirTrain at New York/Kennedy Airport suffers a fatal crash; Key West gets back on flight maps; Expedia.com drops Northwest flights; Hawaii's airlines get an antitrust exemption; two carriers expand their use-it-or-lose-it rules to international flights; airline cutbacks don't affect their lobbying costs or political contributions; and much more.

September 26 Briefing for Business Travelers
Hotels.com's Big Lie ad campaign; there probably won't be a Hooters Airlines; how air traffic has fallen since 9/11; the Transportation Security Administration begins testing "trusted traveler" technology and starts eliminating random gate checks; Aloha Airlines launches Cook Island service; and much more.

September 20 Briefing for Business Travelers
Aer Lingus tries a new way to sell cheap fares; prices are rising on the Heathrow Express; major carriers shift international routes; hotel chains settle a class-action suit on energy surcharges; Northwest is leaving the US Airways frequent-flyer program; Magellan's opens a retail store; and much more.

September 12 Briefing for Business Travelers
U.S. carriers renege on security requirements; Detroit/Metro changes parking fees; US Airways backs off its draconian elite-status rules; United matches the use-it-or-lose-it rules; the TSA now says it will launch a "trusted traveler" program; and much more.

September 5 Briefing for Business Travelers
Most major carriers partially match US Airways' use-it-or-lose-it rule; Spirit adds an upgraded coach class; airlines give executive bonuses while demanding rank-and-file givebacks; United raises upgrade prices; carriers slash thousands of flights on September 11; the FAA imposes special 9/11 air-travel rules at New York and Washington airports; and much more.

August 23 Briefing for Business Travelers
Continental, Northwest and Delta plan a massive code-share alliance; Midwest Express expands in Kansas City; American and United back away from an O'Hare expansion; Alaska plans more transcontinental flying; and much more.

August 15 Briefing for Business Travelers
Flight cuts could cause travel chaos this fall; Amtrak stops Acela Express service; US Airways' historical idiocies; hotel workers in three cities may strike; Delta now charges $40 for a third checked bag; and much more.

August 8 Briefing for Business Travelers
British Airways shifts more U.S. flights to Heathrow; AirTran jumps into Kansas City; Zip launches its Web site in Canada; a one-stop source for Italian museum reservations; Amtrak may slash high-speed Acela service; and more.

August 1 Briefing for Business Travelers
The strike clock ticks at Midwest Express; ten airports now have federal screeners; Vanguard Airlines folds; how the major carriers lie about flight delays; Budget Rent-a-Car files for bankruptcy; and much more.

July 25 Briefing for Business Travelers
The Bush Administration begins backtracking on airport-security deadlines; United and US Airways try for a code-share deal; in-flight passenger vigilantism rears its ugly head again; costs soar for U.S. travelers in Europe; Japan Airlines introduces a new business-class seat; and much more.

July 18 Briefing for Business Travelers
Midway Airlines and US Airways team up to screw you; Sports Express offers fast, convenient luggage shipping; the government again delays your right to control your cellphone number; two more European carriers cut fares; and much more.

July 11 Briefing for Business Travelers
International airlines begin enforcing their carry-on weight limits; Toronto/Pearson is now a "dead zone" for cell phones; National Airlines slashes business fares; New York's LaGuardia Airport is once again the nation's most-delayed airport; and much more.

June 27 Briefing for Business Travelers
The TSA bans open containers of liquids at checkpoints and changes the airport-club access rule; ATA simplifies its fares; Frontier will add at-seat live television service; Amtrak imposes a two-bag carry-on limit; American raises the fee for paper tickets to $20; and much more.

June 20 Briefing for Business Travelers
Europe's fares are changing and the restructuring will eventually cross the ocean; federal screeners take over at two more airports; JetBlue rolls out its first frequent-flyer program; Southwest implements a controversial "fat flyer" policy; United is closing city ticket offices; and much more.

June 13 Briefing for Business Travelers
Airlines warp the meaning of a "direct" flight; the surging euro raises the price of travel in Europe; major airline traffic plummets in May; hotels keep switching brand affiliations; and much more.

June 6 Briefing for Business Travelers
Beware long delays at O'Hare this summer; another discount carrier launches in Canada; Frontier simplifies its standby policies; Regus offers free membership in its worldwide business-center network; a new survey explodes the myths about business travel; and much more.

May 30 Briefing for Business Travelers
Don't buy tickets this weekend since Continental is trying another price hike; JetBlue fills out its Long Beach schedule; Podunk finds a home on the Web; Jetsgo launches next month in Canada; another voice decries the bad prices at Hotels.com; a pilot strike grounds Aer Lingus; and much more.

May 23 Briefing for Business Travelers
The "free" future of hotel high-speed Internet access; airports rush to connect terminals to mass transportation; a new Web service allows you to access your desktop PC from anywhere in the world; you can now get to your airport club even if you're not traveling; Northwest's chief executive has an astonishing view of what major airlines do well; and much more.

May 16 Briefing for Business Travelers
Alternate airlines continue to expand low-fare service; Montreal gives up on Mirabel Airport; St. Regis will assume management of The Lanesborough in London; Lufthansa is trying all-business-class service on its Newark-Dusseldorf route; Argentina's financial crisis means a change in travel patterns; and much more.

May 9 Briefing for Business Travelers
Beware of "national" cellphone plans that aren't; Southwest jumps into the transcon market; Northwest continues to stumble in Detroit; an online survey is tracking the opinion of business travelers; Ritz-Carlton's Florida empire hits some snags; and much more.

May 2 Briefing for Business Travelers
Airlines offer premium-class deals; close-in airport parking returns; ATA launches Charlotte flights and US Airways retaliates; Amex raises Platinum Card fees; Air Canada launches, uh, Zip; and much more.

April 25 Briefing for Business Travelers
The new Swiss carrier is dumping summer seats; AirTran simplifies fares in Atlanta and Delta reacts; Argenbright ain't dead yet; Dulles scraps a replacement of its Midfield Terminal; and much more.

April 18 Briefing for Business Travelers
Never buy airline tickets on the weekend; Hawaiian adds more mainland service; the premium you pay to fly from a hub; Acela overtakes the airline shuttles; Continental upgrades its business class; and much more.

April 11 Briefing for Business Travelers
Airlines use 2001 losses to claim tax refunds; Aloha adds mainland flights to Hawaii; more Cyber options open at U.S. airports; a new lounge and hotel at Tokyo/Narita; the Middle East drops off the route map; and much more.

April 4 Briefing for Business Travelers
Travel-agent fees soar; low-fare carriers add routes; airports continue to suffer security-related upheavals; how to find hotels with high-speed access; airlines load up on overseas flights; United continues its financial follies; and much more.

March 21 Briefing for Business Travelers
Mainline airlines engage in childish fare wars; Southwest will launch two Chicago-California routes; Hertz expands its Prestige Collection; American and Continental link E-tix; and much more.

March 14 Briefing for Business Travelers
Airlines raise fares, directly and indirectly; AirTran flies into Wichita and undercuts United by $500 a flight; hotels improve their frequency programs; DCA is returning to normal; and much more.

March 7 Briefing for Business Travelers
European airlines fill the Africa gap; alternate carriers continue their growth; American and United now accept each other's E-tix; Ansett goes under Down Under; and much more.

February 28 Briefing for Business Travelers
Northwest's new terminal gets a barely passing grade; the Feds split the baby on elite security lines; hotel chains offer creative promotions; Frontier's market cap now rivals United's value; and much more.

February 22 Briefing for Business Travelers
The twice-delayed Midfield Terminal at Detroit/Metro airport is finally scheduled to open on Sunday, February 24. Although the $1.2-billion, 97-gate facility is almost totally dedicated to Northwest flights, the opening of a new terminal at any airline's major hub has a ripple effect on travelers nationwide. I recently toured parts of the facility with the crew of Michigan Radio's Todd Mundt Show. Here's my extremely preliminary report.

February 14 Briefing for Business Travelers
United faces a strike on February 20; the baggage glitch at Northwest's new Detroit terminal; JetBlue and AirTran grow; American Airlines and British Airways give up on code-sharing; and much more.

February 8 Briefing for Business Travelers
Travel prices head up--and down; avoid Salt Lake Airport during the Olympics; American declares war on JetBlue; Canada gets more international flights; Diners Club taxes frequent-flyer mileage transfers; and much more.

January 31 Briefing for Business Travelers
Hotel high-speed Internet access is disrupted; more clubs join Priority Pass; Swissair's successor premiers on the Web; Amtrak faces extinction; airlines launch more international routes; Air Canada cuts frequent-flyer perks; and much more.

January 23 Briefing for Business Travelers
Why airlines are rushing food back on flights; Southwest expands in Chicago; the meaningless removal of blackout dates on restricted awards; major changes for overseas flights and luxury hotels; and much more.

January 16 Briefing for Business Travelers
LAX hikes parking and car-rental fees; alternate carriers grow; a hotel reopens near Ground Zero; Amtrak restores Boston-Portland service; the media gets burned by former El Al officials; and much more.

Copyright 1993-2004 by Joe Brancatelli. All rights reserved.