Planet DMC

News and tidbits from the travel industry

Month: February 2022

Beneath the Great Wall of China lies the world’s deepest high-speed railway station

According to China’s state media, engineers used an electronic detonator to precisely time the explosives down to the millisecond. It was the first time the technology was used in China, and allowed workers to maintain a vibration velocity of below 0.2 centimeters per second. That means every explosion was precisely calculated to ensure the impact would be no stronger than a single footstep on the Great Wall.Maggie Hiufu Wong (CNN)

The hermit of Socotra Island

Marooned between Somalia and Yemen where the Arabian Sea and Indian Ocean meet, the Socotra archipelago is one of the most isolated continental fragments on Earth – a piece of Africa adrift at sea. The high proportion of endemic flora here have led some to label this Unesco World Heritage site the “Galapagos of the Indian Ocean”. More than one-third of Socotra’s 825 plant species and 90% of its reptile species don’t live anywhere else in the world, and gazing up at the islands’ surreal, umbrella-like dragon’s blood trees and down at thousands of bright blue and red freshwater crabs that scurry in the twilight, it can feel like you’re on another planet.Geri Moore (BBC)

The newest subscription service: flights. Would you do up to 24 roundtrips a year for a monthly rate?

Alaska Airlines announced Wednesday the launch of Flight Pass, a subscription service with two tiers to be redeemed for 6, 12 or 24 nonstop trips a year “to eligible destinations” in the Western U.S. Notably excluded: flights to and from Alaska’s home base in Seattle. Flight Pass subscribers can choose between two annual plans: the “Flight Pass” starting at $49 per month or “Flight Pass Pro” starting at $199. The difference between the two plans is the length of time required for booking. While the “Flight Pass” plan requires members to book at least 14 days in advance, the “Flight Pass Pro” allows for same-day booking (up to two hours before departure); both plans allow members to book 90 days in advance.Josh Rivera (USA Today)

TAP Air Portugal CEO Says Airline Passengers Will Wear Masks Forever

We have put into place so many additional protocols. I am absolutely convinced they will stay forever.Christine Ourmières-Widener (TAP Air Portugal)

For Skiers, a Winter of Discontent

In addition to maintaining employee numbers, ski areas must contend with burnout and the potential for sagging morale, especially this season. That’s why in mid-January, the Indy Pass launched a Love Your Lifty campaign, which encourages guests to show appreciation for any resort worker by posting a photo or story to social media. Weekly drawings award Indy Passes for next winter to posters and the employees they highlight.Cindy Hirschfeld (New York Times)

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