Travel Newsstand for Oct. 5-12, 2017
HOME    E-MAIL JOE    PRINT    2017 COLUMNS     ARCHIVES     SEARCH    LOG OUT
Read all about it: Pick your poison (and your health facility) at Dallas/ Fort Worth. LA by way of Goose Bay: the Tale of Air France Flight 66. When the airlines had city ticket offices. The horror rains down from a hotel-room window in Las Vegas. Rick Steves gets pickpocketed. How Politico tracked Tom Price's flights and took him down. And more.

Pick Your Poison (and Your Health Facility) at DFW
If you're going to be sick on the road, try to do it at Dallas/Fort Worth Airport, the sprawling facility that's larger than the island of Manhattan. An "urgent care" center and pharmacy opened this week in Terminal D. It's located opposite Gate D24 upstairs from the Cool River restaurant. Code 3, the medical outfit that runs the Terminal D center, is also planning to open a free-standing "emergency room" on the grounds of DFW at Southgate Plaza. It's a sophisticated 1-2 punch concocted by Dr. Carrie de Moor, Code 3's chief executive officer.

And therein lies an interesting--and potentially costly--tale of medical terminology. As NBC News reported earlier this year, there is a substantial difference between an "urgent care" center and a free-standing facility that may or may not be clearly marked as an "emergency room." Urgent care centers, as you probably know, are walk-in facilities staffed by doctors and/or nurses and other medical professionals and they specialize in immediate treatment of minor ailments at reasonable prices. A free-standing "emergency room," however, is just that: a hospital-style emergency room and trauma center without longer-stay accommodations and other typical hospital infrastructure attached. The other difference: The free-standing emergency rooms charge hospital prices that can run into thousands of dollars even for minor treatments. "Itís more expensive to order a filet mignon than a hamburger," Dr. de Moor of Code 3 is quoted as saying in the NBC News story. "Itís two completely different types of care." So be careful when choosing which of Dr. de Moor's DFW fast-care centers to visit.

When Horror Rained Down From a Hotel-Room Window
The horror in Las Vegas this week--59 dead and nearly 500 injured--was only made worse for business travelers because the death rained down from a hotel room. It's hard to see those blown-out windows on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort and not think of the times we have stayed there or passed by on the way to some conference or other. The Daily Mail of London got its hands on photos of how Stephen Paddock converted his suite into a sniper's nest. The Las Vegas Review-Journal reports other Las Vegas properties now wanding guest luggage to try to avoid a repeat of Paddock's murderous attack. The New York Times has decided that hotels are not secure enough, a not-particularly-new insight that I covered years ago in a different context. Meanwhile, the Associated Press explains why hoteliers don't like thinking about security. And Gary Leff's View from the Wing blog covers one ludicrous overreaction in the lodging industry. The video, by the way, is from The Washington Post.

LA By Way of Goose Bay: The Tale of Air France Flight 66
An Air France Airbus A380 flying as AF66 from Paris/CDG to LAX on September 30 lost its Number 4 engine at 37,000 feet above Greenland. A passenger got in-flight video of the uncontained engine failure. After mayday was declared, the captain diverted to Goose Bay, Canada, and a savvy YouTuber posted the cockpit's conversation with the Goose Bay tower (see left). One passenger on the flight posted her tale and an AvGeek Web site caught up with her and secured even more detail. Since Goose Bay couldn't easily accommodate the jumbo aircraft, passengers were required to remain aboard the double-decked plane for many hours as Air France arranged for two alternate flights. But the really annoying stuff came later. Regulatory agencies from several countries got into an unseemly debate over who would investigate the accident. It was eventually decided that France's BEA would lead the inquiry.

Tight Connections ...
      High Price Tom Price didn't make it to the weekend as Secretary of Health and Human Services after the fusillade of stories about his abuse of charter and military aircraft. Now Politico.com, which did the heavy lifting on Price's flying profligacy, explains how it got the goods on the former Cabinet member.
      The Way We Were Barbara Peterson at Conde Nast Traveler remembers the days when airlines maintained lavish ticket offices on high streets of the world's most important destinations.
      The Guru's Glitch Rick Steves has made a career as a travel guru. But that doesn't mean he is immune to little travel annoyances. Like this summer, when he was the victim of a pickpocket in Paris. -- Joe Brancatelli


This column is Copyright © 2017 by Joe Brancatelli. JoeSentMe.com is Copyright © 2017 by Joe Brancatelli. All rights reserved. All of the opinions and material in this column are the sole property and responsibility of Joe Brancatelli. This material may not be reproduced in any form without his express written permission.