Europe Not This Week – Part 2

December 22, 2009 on 10:30 pm | In Europe travel, ThereArePlaces.com, country travel information, personal travel, things travelers need to know, travel, travel news, travel restrictions, travel warnings | Comments Off

Well, its been travel hell in Europe this week and its does not look like the situation will markedly improve until next week at the earliest. Seems like it’s a Dickens’ Christmas for travelers on the continent and in the UK – “Bah, Humbug!”

If you have a choice, delay travel to Europe until after Christmas. If you do not have a choice, be prepared for delays, lines and the usual travel problems that pop-up when the weather “breaks” transportation systems.

There was some good news as the Eurostar is, once again, running the Channel Tunnel, although the backlog of passengers is so large that the company is not accepting new reservations until after Christmas. Here are three stories on the weather troubles from the BBC, Wall Street Journal, and Deutshce Welle.

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New Wrinkle In China Travel

June 22, 2009 on 10:47 am | In China travel, Health and travel, Influenza outbreak, Swine flu outbreak, things travelers need to know, travel restrictions | Comments Off

Today, the U.S. State Department posted an announcement about new procedures that have been initiated in China to deal with the outbreak of the H1N1 Influenza. Since these procedures may involve random testing and quarantine of travelers for up to seven days, we thought you might be interested in this “official” information.

“June 19, 2009

The Department of State alerts U.S. citizens to the quarantine measures imposed by the Government of China in response to the 2009-H1N1 pandemic that may affect travel to China. This Travel Alert expires on September 30, 2009.

Current quarantine measures in China include placing arriving passengers who exhibit fever or flu-like symptoms into seven-day quarantine. Although the proportion of arriving Americans being quarantined remains low, the random nature of the selection process increases the uncertainty surrounding travel to China. The selection process focuses on those sitting in close proximity to another traveler exhibiting fever or flu-like symptoms or on those displaying an elevated temperature if arriving from an area where outbreaks of 2009-H1N1 have occurred. We have reports of passengers arriving from areas where outbreaks have occurred (including the U.S. and Mexico) being placed in precautionary quarantine simply because they registered slightly elevated temperatures.

In some instances, children have been separated from their parents because either the parent or the child tested positive for 2009-H1N1 and was placed in quarantine for treatment. This situation presents the possibility of Chinese medical personnel administering medications to minors without first having consulted their parents.

The Department of State has received reports about unsuitable quarantine conditions, including the unavailability of suitable drinking water and food, unsanitary conditions, and the inability to communicate with others.

Travelers to China are reminded that all foreign travelers, including U.S. citizens, are obliged to follow local procedures regarding quarantines and any other public health-related measures. The U.S. Embassy will be unable to influence the duration of stay in quarantine for affected travelers. The Chinese government will not compensate people for lost travel expenses. Travelers to China are urged to consider purchasing travel insurance to protect against losses in the event they are quarantined.

For more information on U.S. Government policy during a pandemic, and for travel safety information, please see the State Department’s “Pandemic/Avian Influenza” and “Remain in Country” fact sheets on www.travel.state.gov. Further information about 2009-H1N1 Influenza, including steps you can take to stay healthy, can be found at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control website at http://www.cdc.gov/h1n1flu/, the U.S. Government pandemic influenza website at http://www.pandemicflu.gov, and the World Health Organization website at http://www.who.int/csr/disease/swineflu/en/index.html. ”

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Some Areas Of Tibet Closed Until The End Of March

February 12, 2009 on 8:49 am | In China travel, travel news, travel restrictions | Comments Off

Although weather makes winter travel  in Tibet difficult anyway, portions of Tibet are being closed by the Chinese government ahead of the 50th Anniversary of the Tibetan Uprising.  Several areas of the country are never available for tourism, but a number that were open recently have been closed to avoid any of the problems that occured last year on the anniversary date.  See this article from Yahoo and the Associated Press for more information.

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Flying with Spare Batteries – New U.S. Rules

January 1, 2008 on 11:45 am | In country travel information, personal travel, travel, travel news, travel restrictions | Comments Off

Well, for those of you who fly within the United States and carry spare, lithium batteries for your cell-phone, camcorder, camera, or laptop, the world of travel will  get a little more difficult today (January 1, 2008).  The U.S. Department of Transportation has issued a complicated set of new rules governing the transport spare batteries while flying.

We have added an article to our website that outlines what you need to know and tips to get you into compliance with the new requirements.  You can find it in our articles on travel planning here

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