Saturday, 29 March 2008

Terminal failure

The eagerly anticipated launch of Terminal five (T5) at London Heathrow couldn't have been worse. Flights to Manchester, Paris, Brussels, Newcastle and Edinburgh were among those cancelled. As the Leader in the Guardian of London observed, "it would be no bad thing if they never resumed. The world's most overworked airport has become a bloated catastrophe, a transit point for travellers who could be carried more efficiently and environmentally by other routes. The chaos of the last few days has been awful for passengers and fairly humiliating for Britain, but it might in the end do some good if it leads to a rethink of endless airport expansion in a country where transport policy appears to be dictated by the needs of Fortress Heathrow."

Tuesday, 25 March 2008

Hydrabad: first look

Rajiv Gandhi International Airport has finally opened for business. Flickr photographer Jason D Almeida has produced an exaustive set of images [via Jaunted] of the new airport some are dubbing "Shamshabad", due to its shambolic opening and poor transport connections.

The airport is so new that, the Telegraph of London reports, that yesterday an airline pilot took his passengers on a 1,200-mile detour after refusing to land at a new airport in the southern Indian city of Hyderabad, claiming he had never heard of it.

Tuesday, 11 March 2008

US airports increasingly do it doggy-style

According to USA Today
a growing number of 24-hour "pet hotels" are being built inside or near several north American airports.

Travelers can find "pet hotels" near the airports at Jacksonville, New Orleans and Portland, Ore. Pet hotel operators have plans to open facilities or are in discussions with Dallas/Fort Worth, Denver, Chicago O'Hare, Chicago Midway, Houston Bush Intercontinental, Houston Hobby and Minneapolis.

"Given that more people have pets, it's just a natural progression of services that airports should offer," Saq Nadeem, founder of Paradise 4 Paws told the newspaper. Paradise 4 Paws, which will open next month near Chicago O'Hare, will even operate a long-term, 22-spot parking lot on-site, so that its customers can take the shuttle directly to the airport. Daily rates for dog hotels can range widely — from $15 a night for a cage at the local veterinarian office to $70 for a large room with extra perks. The company has two locations within a mile of the airports at Jacksonville and New Orleans and plans to open at Houston Intercontinental and Houston Hobby.