Difference between revisions of "Travel news"
Revision as of 12:32, 3 November 2005
For more general news see Wikinews
Unrest in Indonesia
10 October 2005
In Indonesia, a 126% fuel price on October 1st has caused rapid increases in transportation and goods prices across the archipelago. Violent protest demonstrations have, however, so far been notably absent.
29 September 2005
In Indonesia, a fuel price increase scheduled for October 1st has sparked hoarding, shortages and numerous public demonstrations. Public transportation has also been disrupted.
Fuel shortages currently affect the entire country, including Bali. Strategic points in large cities such as Jakarta and Surabaya have heavy police and security presence. Steer clear of demonstrations, as they have the potential to turn violent and police may also use heavy-handed methods to clear them. However, a repeat of the 1997 mayhem that led to the downfall of Suharno's regime is unlikely, as the Indonesian economy is generally considered to be in better shape.
Hong Kong Disneyland opens
12 September 2005
Hong Kong's Disneyland, the first in China, has opened to the public. Tickets start from HK$295, but have been sold out for the first days. The park is located on the island of Lantau, a 20-minute train ride from the city center or airport.
Spring is in the air
19 July 2005
China's first low-cost carrier, Spring Airlines, has completed its maiden flight between Shanghai and Yantai. Prices start from Y200, a quarter of rivals' fares, and a revolution in Chinese flight pricing seems set to follow. 800-820-6222
Explosions in the London Underground
5 August 2005
Full service is now running on all lines.
18 July 2005
Transport in London is slowly returning to normal after the bombings, but the entire Circle Line and sections of some other lines remain closed. Bus services operate to replace most closed sections. Up-to-date information for line closings and network status is available on the Transport for London site.
7 July 2005
Four nearly simultaneous explosions rocked central London's transport network at the height of the morning commuter rush hour in what appears to have been a well-planned terrorist attack, presumably made to coincide with the G8 Summit at the Gleneagles Resort in Perthshire, Scotland. A group connected to al-Qaida have claimed responsibility for the atrocities.
Thirty-seven people have been killed and hundreds more have been injured, several critically .
Transportation systems throughout London were shut down or disabled in reponse to the incidents. The Underground is closed for the day, and may remain closed longer. Rail service in and out of London is interrupted, and the bus service is also disabled in the Central Zone 1. By evening, many - though not all - services were beginning to return to relative normality.
British Transport Police have a number for calls from family concerned about victims: +44 20 8358 0101. People outside the UK should contact their local British embassy or consulate.
Currency revaluation in Romania
1 July 2005
Historic Paris department store closed "for reasons of safety"
28 June 2005' The historic Samaritaine department store, occupying the same building in the 1st arrondissement of Paris since 1901 closed today "for reasons of safety" according to an announcement by LVMH Paris, the company which owns the store. The store will be closed for at least 6 year for study and renovation.
Some activists have raised the suspicion that the company plans to replace the store with a hotel; LVMH denies this, and has significantly promised "no layoffs at all" will result from the closing.
Civil unrest in Bolivia
10 June 2005
8 June 2005
The Bolivian capital La Paz has been crippled by protests against the government, including a transport strike, food shortages and a blockade of the road to the international airport. Most flights have been cancelled and travellers are advised to steer clear.
Further information: US State Department travel advisory for Bolivia
Cheap flights in India
24 May 2005
Wynn Las Vegas opens
28 April 2005
Wynn Las Vegas, at $2.7 billion the most expensive resort ever built, has opened in Las Vegas. The casino-resort features a private golf course, an artificial mountain with a 5-story waterfall and a million-gallon water tank for the nightly show. Needless to say, there's also over 100,000 square feet of casino space. Room rates start at $250.
Egypt to re-open tombs of Thutmose III, Merenptah
16 April 2005
Egyptian Minister of Culture Farouq Hosni announced he will today re-open the tombs of Thutmose III and Merneptah in the Valley of the Kings after their 6 month closure for restoration.
Zahi Hawwas, Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities (SCA), said the tombs of Ramesses III and Ramesses VI, meanwhile, will be closed for regular rejuvenation work.
Acela Express suspended
27 April 2005
The service suspension is now expected to continue until "sometime in summer". 
15 April 2005
Amtrak's Acela Express service between Washington, New York and Boston has been suspended until further notice while cracks in brake rotors are investigated. Additional Regional and Metroliner services are running instead. Services are planned to resume on April 23 at the earliest.
Expo 2005 opens
25 March 2005
Aichi Expo 2005, held near Nagoya, Japan, has opened. The $3-billion 121-country extravaganza with the theme "Nature's Wisdom", featuring robots, frozen mammoths and much more, will run until September 25. Tickets cost ¥4500 per day at the door and 15 million visitors are expected.
Chubu International Airport opens
17 February 2005
Chubu International Airport, Japan's third major international gateway, has opened near Nagoya. Also known as Centrair, the 24-hour airport is on an artificial island 30 minutes south from the center of town and opens on time to serve Expo 2005, kicking off in March. The new airport replaces the existing Nagoya airport and also takes over its IATA code NGO.
Tropical cyclone strikes Cook Islands
6 February 2005
Cook Islands emergency center officials expressed relief today that damage from Tropical Cylone Meena, a category 5 storm, was less severe than anticipated after the eye of the storm bypassed the main island of Rarotonga. Over the previous 2 days, as the storm made its way through the island group, flights to and from both Rarotonga and the outlying islands had been suspended, planes put under cover or flown out of the area and tourist resorts evacuated in the face of forecasts of 270 km/h wind gusts and 10 metre storm surges. Although flights resumed only 15 hours after the storm passed to the east, there was significant local flooding caused by 15 m high waves. Iconic store Trader Jacks was inundated by the sea as were other parts of Avarua town and northern Rarotonga coast. Although the cleanup is expected to take several weeks, damage was nowhere near as severe as that caused by Cyclone Heta to Niue in January 2004.
State of emergency declared in Nepal
On Feb 1st 2005, King Gyanendra of Nepal dismissed the government and declared a state of emergency. Kathmandu airport is open and internet and phone lines are operating as usual (after a temporary suspension). There has been no violence in the capital, but the future remains uncertain. Foreign tourists are not a target in this internal dispute, and have continuously been welcomed by all sides. However, the situation could deteriorate, and so it is recommended to check news reports and government travel advisories before traveling to the kingdom. If you do decide to travel in Nepal and wish to avoid possible trouble spots, the Everest (Khumbu) region is no doubt the place least likely to be effected.
Egypt announces price rises for tourist entry to monuments
21 January 2005
Reports from Egypt reveal that the Egyptian Supreme Council of Antiquities has raised all ticket prices for tourist admission to the country's vast array of ancient and medieval monuments. Above-inflation price hikes, effective immediately, range between 40% to 175%, with the average increase standing around 75% - the largest increase was applied to the Valley of the Kings, with tickets allowing entry to three tombs each leaping from LE (Egyptian Pounds) 20 to LE 55 (175%).
The list below (not exhaustive) displays both the previous prices and the increased prices for Egypt's primary monuments and sites, arranged from north to south:
Dendera (12) 20
Esna (8) 15
Edfu (20) 35
Kom Ombo (10) 20
Abu Simbel (30) 50
Turkey introduces new currency
1 January 2005
Turkey has introduced the New Turkish lira [code TRY]  as a replacement currency for the old Turkish lira - the new currency is marked YTL (Yeni Türk Lirası) is equivalent to 1 million of the old, allowing quoted prices to be slashed by six zeros "x,000,000" or six decimal places. The hugely inflated figures were the result of escalating inflation in the Turkish economy during the 1980s and 1990s, and were the basis for any number of tourist scams - not least the handing back of short change, owing to tourists' carelessness and / or confusion over the zeros. The old currency will be valid until the end of the year (2005), allowing frequent travellers opportunity to exchange old notes.
Conversion rates on 1 January 2005:
Giza Pyramid of Khafre re-opens to the public
1 January 2005
As of the New Year, the Egyptian Supreme Council of Antiquities has announced that the Pyramid of Khafre (Chephren), the second largest pyramid on the Giza plateau, has now re-opened to the public on a permanent basis after nearly two years of renovation and conservation. Under the system of rotation, the smallest Giza pyramid, that of Menkaure, will now close to the public for a similar program of cleaning and conservation.
Earthquake and tsunami devastates south-east and south Asia
28 December 2004
Travellers are now being warned to revise their travel plans to the affected areas, not merely on account of the devastation and danger of aftershocks, but also on account of threat of disease from contaminated water and unrecovered bodies.
27 December 2004
Although hampered by distance, isolation and poor communications, reports are coming in that tell of potentially hundreds (if not thousands) of tourist deaths in the areas, alongside the horrific toll the waves have taken on local inhabitants.
26 December 2004
An extremely powerful, undersea earthquake of magnitude 9.0  off the north coast of the Indonesian island of Sumatra created a devastating tsunami (tidal wave) that has wrought devastation along the coasts of countries neighbouring the north Indian Ocean and the Bay of Bengal - these include Thailand, Sri Lanka, India and the Maldives.