The incident occurred days after the airline doubled down on its mask policy.


​A passenger refusing to wear a face mask was kicked off an American Airlines flight on Wednesday, according to reports, days after the carrier pledged to strictly enforce its face-covering policy more strictly.

The passenger, Brandon Straka, had boarded a flight from New York’s LaGuardia Airport heading to Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport and declined to put on a face covering.

“Prior to the departure from the gate of American Airlines flight 1263 from New York’s LaGuardia to Dallas/Fort Worth, Brandon Straka declined to wear a face covering," a spokesperson from American told Travel + Leisure on Thursday. "After he refused to comply with the instructions provided by the flight crew, our team members asked him to deplane. He deplaned and the flight departed the gate four minutes late at 12:34 p.m. ET"


​Straka, a conservative media personality, also took to Twitter and Periscope to recount his experience. A New York Times reporter who happened to be on the flight also posted audio of the encounter.

“Mr. Straka stated to our airport team members that he would comply with our policies, and was rebooked on a later flight," we're told. "Our team is reviewing this incident, and we have reached out to Mr. Straka to get more information.”


​On May 11, American Airlines updated its policy to require all customers to wear a face covering while onboard. On Monday, the airline doubled down on their policy and said in a statement, in collaboration with Airlines for America, it “may also deny future travel for customers who refuse to wear a face covering.”

However, the airline noted that children or those "with a disability or medical reason for why they cannot wear a face covering," are exempt from doing so.

Straka told CNN, that he finds it difficult to wear a mask but declined to comment to the network on whether he had an actual medical condition.

Earlier this week, United Airlines would temporarily ban passengers from flying if they refuse to wear a mask on board, placing them on an internal travel restriction list.

More than 1,200 flights to and from the city have been canceled and rail services have been suspended until at least July 9.


A second wave of coronavirus outbreaks has struck Beijing, prompting the city to raise security alerts to their second-highest level.

At least 27 of Beijing’s neighborhoods have been placed on lockdown and residents cannot leave the city, The BBC reported on Wednesday. More than 1,200 flights to and from the city have been canceled and rail services have been suspended until at least July 9.

After more than 50 consecutive days of no new coronavirus cases, Beijing officials reported a cluster of 87 new cases over the weekend, 46 of which were asymptomatic. Over the past week, there have been at least 137 new cases in the city, according to The Associated Press.

The outbreak is believed to have originated from Xinfadi, Beijing’s largest produce and seafood market. The market is shut down and its surrounding neighborhoods have been placed on high alert. At least 100 people are under quarantine.

Face masks are required when in an enclosed public space and everyone must submit to a thermal temperature check before entering a business. Schools and sports matches have been suspended. Swimming pools and gyms are closed. But roads, factories, and businesses have remained open. Employees are encouraged to work from home when possible.

Advertisement

hyatt, marriott to mandaTe facemasks indoors

The map includes information including current border policy and any documentation or testing that could be required upon arrival.


​There’s now an easy way to peruse your vacation options as the world begins recovering from the coronavirus pandemic.

The International Air Transport Association (IATA), an authoritative trade association for airlines around the world, has created an interactive 
Travel Regulations Map powered by Timatic solutions that allow both airlines and travelers to quickly see current COVID-19 travel restrictions for each country around the world.

On the map, countries are color-coded based on their current travel restrictions (which will be continually updated by IATA) and are sorted into four categories: totally restrictive, partially restrictive, not restricted or under review.

When users click on a country, they’ll find information about current border policy, including if quarantine periods are necessary, exemptions, and any documentation or testing that could be required upon arrival. The Travel Regulations Map sources its information from airlines and government agencies and is likely to have accurate border information before your travel agent or advisor.


​While the map is a handy tool, travelers shouldn’t use it as a final or single resource. IATA reminds users that while they strive for the utmost accuracy, regulations around COVID-19 are constantly evolving — and each country is making their own ever-changing rules. Be sure to visit official government websites for the most accurate and up-to-date information before booking travel.

As the European Union open borders this month, travelers will likely begin to move again. But there is no uniform guideline or process for moving around the world. Countries like Greece, Austria and Italy all have different reopening dates, different rules and different timelines for welcoming back visitors.

No matter where or when you decide to travel, the situation will be very different on the road and in the skies this summer. Check out the ways experts are predicting travel will change this summer — and beyond.

You Might Not Be Able to Visit Australia Until 2021

Advertisement

Belgium Giving All Residents Free Train Trips to Boost Travel

Florida Woman Causes Flight to Divert After Faking a Medical Problem

Tourism Australia told T+L that welcoming international visitors "will likely be further down the track."


​Australia is unlikely to reopen its international borders until 2021.

In a press conference Wednesday, Australian Trade Minister Simon Birmingham said that keeping borders closed to international travelers until next year "is more likely the case,” the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) reported.

Birmingham did not confirm 2021 for a reopening date, but rather reiterated that “in terms of open tourist-related travel in or out of Australia, that remains quite some distance off,” and acknowledge that an opening date next year, "is more likely the case."

Since Australia closed its borders on March 20, international travel has been at a standstill. At the moment, only Australian citizens, residents, and immediate family can visit the country and they must self-impose a 14-day quarantine at a designated facility like a hotel after landing, according to Tourism Australia.

“From Tourism Australia’s perspective attracting international travelers will form a critical part of the tourism restart and recovery in Australia, but will likely be further down the track,” Tourism Australia’s Managing Director, Phillipa Harrison, said in a statement provided to Travel + Leisure. “We just don’t know when international restrictions will start to be lifted, nor how the process of restoring international travel will play out. But we will be ready to go back when the time is right.”Australia currently has nearly 7,4000 cases of coronavirus and 102 people have died. per Johns Hopkins University data. An overseas travel ban remains in effect for Australians, meaning they cannot leave the country, but the government is coordinating “travel bubbles” which could allow Australians to visit other low-risk destinations like New Zealand.

Man Removed From American Airlines Flight for Not Wearing a Mask

travel usa, travel news, US Travel Magazine travel articles

Carnival Corp. will accelerate a plan to remove cruise ships from its fleets as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

The company said in its Q2 earnings release that ships it had intended to sell in the coming years will be taken out of service in the 2020 fiscal year. There are plans in place to dispose of six ships that are expected to be removed from the fleet within 90 days, with more to come, Carnival Corp. said. 

The company revealed no specifics. The oldest ships for the company’s largest brand, Carnival Cruise Line, are the eight Fantasy-class vessels that were built in the 1990s. 

Removing ships from the fleet is part of Carnival Corp.’s capacity-optimization strategy for its return to operations. When it gets the OK to sail again, ships will be deployed in a phased manner based on specific ships and brands, from “a select number of easily accessible homeports.”

Carnival Corp. is also expecting delays in new ship deliveries.


​As far as bookings, Carnival Corp. has introduced a number of incentives and flexibility to increase traveler confidence. 

As of May 31, about half of guests whose original sailings were canceled have asked for cash refunds, Carnival Corp. said. 

Even with “substantially reduced marketing and selling spend,” Carnival Corp. is seeing demand for new bookings for 2021. In the second half of April through May, around two-thirds of 2021 bookings were new, with the remaining coming from guests using future cruise credits.

Also as of May 31, Carnival had $2.6 billion in deposits on the books. Of that, $121 million was for third-quarter sailings, and $353 million was for fourth-quarter sailings.

“The company expects any decline in the customer deposits balance in the second half of 2020, all of which is expected to occur in the third quarter, to be significantly less than the decline in the second quarter of 2020,” Carnival Corp. said.

Qantas won’t restart international flights until fall

Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement

U.S. Border Closure With Canada and Mexico Extended to July

More than 1,200 flights to and from the city have been canceled and rail services have been suspended until at least July 9.


A second wave of coronavirus outbreaks has struck Beijing, prompting the city to raise security alerts to their second-highest level.

At least 27 of Beijing’s neighborhoods have been placed on lockdown and residents cannot leave the city, The BBC reported on Wednesday. More than 1,200 flights to and from the city have been canceled and rail services have been suspended until at least July 9.

After more than 50 consecutive days of no new coronavirus cases, Beijing officials reported a cluster of 87 new cases over the weekend, 46 of which were asymptomatic. Over the past week, there have been at least 137 new cases in the city, according to The Associated Press.

The outbreak is believed to have originated from Xinfadi, Beijing’s largest produce and seafood market. The market is shut down and its surrounding neighborhoods have been placed on high alert. At least 100 people are under quarantine.

Face masks are required when in an enclosed public space and everyone must submit to a thermal temperature check before entering a business. Schools and sports matches have been suspended. Swimming pools and gyms are closed. But roads, factories, and businesses have remained open. Employees are encouraged to work from home when possible.


​China’s new policy towards new coronavirus cases is “zero tolerance.” As soon as a city reports new cases, the area is quickly locked down and millions can become trapped, according to Financial Times. When small virus outbreaks were reported last month in northeast China, the areas were also quickly placed under strict lockdown.

"There is no way Beijing becomes Wuhan 2.0,” Hu Xijin, the editor-in-chief of state-controlled Global Times, tweeted earlier this week. “The world will see China's powerful capacity in controlling the epidemic, including (the) government's strong leadership, respect to science, public's willingness to cooperate and nationwide coordination of control measures. We will win again.”

Wuhan, the center of the outbreak, lifted its strict lockdown in early April after 76 days. About 84,000 people — around 1 percent — of China’s population have reported confirmed cases of coronavirus, according to Johns Hopkins University.

Carnival Corp. reducing fleets

TRAVEL AFTER THE CORONA VIRUS...

Without a Covid-19 vaccine or widespread testing, 22% of frequent American travelers don’t expect to fly domestically until after summer 2021, according to an ICF survey.

For international travel, that number jumps 41%.

ICF conducted the survey between May 18 and May 20. The survey defined “frequent travelers” as individuals who reported traveling out of state at least a few times per year prior to the outbreak of Covid-19.

It found that 42% of frequent travelers do expect to fly domestically this year and 24% expect to fly internationally. 

ICF said that people ages 18 to 34 are much more willing to travel internationally this summer than the general population, while individuals ages 50 and above are more hesitant than the general population to avoid any sort of travel through next summer.

Advertisement

Qantas doesn’t plan to resume international flights (besides New Zealand) until late October, according to reports. 

Australia, though, is considering a so-called “travel bubble” with New Zealand. Both countries have low numbers of new daily Covid-19 cases. Australia is typically recording less than 20 new cases per day, while New Zealand has seen no new cases most days this month. 

Earlier this month, Qantas said it would begin scaling up domestic Australia service. Capacity by the end of June will reach of 15% of pre-Covid-19 levels compared with 5% at the start of the month.

A Florida woman, uncomfortable in her seat on an American Airlines flight, faked a medical condition in the hopes of getting a bigger, better seat.

Now she has much bigger problems.

Believing her story that she had trouble breathing, the pilot declared an emergency and turned the plane back to where it took off at Pensacola International Airport, where the woman later admitted it was a hoax.


The flight was heading for Miami and took off at 5:43 a.m. on Friday, an airline spokesman told Newsweek. Less than 45 minutes later, the plane landed back at Pensacola after the unidentified woman said she was having trouble breathing.

When the plane arrived, the woman fessed up. A Pensacola Police spokesman, Mike Wood, told Newsweek the woman’s physical stature was on the “large” side and she was not comfortable in her seat. She faked the medical problem hoping to be moved to another seat or even another plane once it arrived back in Pensacola.


​Once back on the ground, she initially refused to get off the plane until she was convinced by the pilot and police to disembark.

No charges have been filed but the woman is being held at a mental health facility pending further evaluation.

According to American Airlines, “All passengers deplaned normally at the gate through the main boarding door and onto the jet bridge. The passenger was subsequently removed by law enforcement and medical personnel, and the flight took off again at 7.41 a.m."

This Map Will Show Where You Can and Can't Travel Due to Coronavirus

ADVERTISEMENT

The U.S. has extended its border closures with Canada and Mexico to July, according to the Department of Homeland Security.

The land border closure, which restricts non-essential travel between the U.S. and its neighbors to the north and south, will be extended until July 21, Chad Wolf, the acting U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security, confirmed in a statement on Tuesday, specifying the date of the extension on Twitter.

“Based on the success of the existing restrictions and the emergence of additional global COVID-19 hotspots, the Department will continue to limit non-essential travel at our land ports of entry with Canada and Mexico,” Wolf said. “This extension protects Americans while keeping essential trade and travel flowing as we reopen the American economy.”

The restrictions were first announced on March 18 and later extended in April and May, The Associated Press reported.

The border closure prevents non-essential crossings, but allows certain people to cross, including Americans coming back to the U.S. and Canadians returning to Canada, the wire service reported. It also does not restrict essential trade, DHS noted.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said in a speech the extension was “an important decision that will keep people in both of our countries safe as we continue fighting COVID-19.”


​The U.S. has recorded more than 2.1 million confirmed cases of COVID-19, according to Johns Hopkins University., the most of any country in the world. Mexico has recorded more than 159,000 confirmed cases while Canada has recorded over 101,000.

Closing the border with the U.S. isn’t the only mitigation measure Canada has implemented. The country has also banned medium and large-sized cruise ships in its ports until at least the end of October in an effort to prevent the further spread of the virus.

Several areas in Mexico, on the other hand, have started looking ahead with plans to welcome tourists back to the beaches and towns. Puerto Vallarta, Cancun, and Los Cabos have all implemented tourism-related reopening plans.


ADVERTISEMENT

Many frequent flyers won’t be back for a while

Flights to Beijing Are Canceled, Lockdown Is Renewed As Coronavirus Cases Spike

The government is encouraging people to take a domestic trip to boost the travel economy.


​When lockdown measures end, domestic trips will be essential to boosting the travel industry again.

As Belgium slowly reopens after three months in quarantine due to the coronavirus pandemic, the government is now offering free 10-trip rail passes to all residents in the country, according to Lonely Planet.

The government decided to provide these rail passes in an effort to stimulate the economy and encourage domestic tourism. After spending most of spring indoors, a lot of people are looking for ways to safely travel during the summer months.

The passes will be valid from July to December of this year and can be used anywhere in Belgium. Other countries have implemented similar incentives to help people travel again, including Japan and New Zealand, according to Lonely Planet. 


​Among the many ways the government intends to support its people in the coming months, employers will also have the opportunity to issue a tax-deductible €300 (about $337 USD) voucher to their employees to be used in restaurants, bars, cultural attractions, and other businesses, the Brussels Times reported.

ustravelonline.net