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We were all excited about the new shopping and dining options as well as the new airport smell that recently arrived at Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, but it already looks like there’s something to complain about. In case you missed it the airport just cut the ribbon on a brandy new international terminal—Concourse F.
You’d think that airport officials would have focused plenty of attention and planning on the new terminal’s ability to process plenty of international arrivals and departures in a quick and efficient manner. After all, that’s what it’s there for. Well unfortunately that doesn’t seem to be the case, as there are already plenty of complaints about the new building's lack of efficiency for those passengers arriving from around the globe.
In what has to be one of the weirder press releases we've read in a long time, U-Haul is literally yelling at people regarding "the true meaning of Memorial Day." Quote-unquote: "Memorial Day IS NOT about getting an extra day off from work, having a picnic with family and friends, or taking advantage of all the many sales that will be offered." That ought to do the trick, because if there's anything we know about the Internet it's that capital letters are extra persuasive.
And yet somehow it seems as if holiday travelers haven't gotten the memo. U-Haul's caps aside, more Americans will be vacationing over this year's Memorial Day travel period than ever before. In 2011 the five-day periodThursday through Mondaysaw zero increase over 2010. One year later, with an economy that's kind of sort of improving, road trips are expected to be up to the tune of half a million more travelers.
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The modern airport is for so much more than simply leaving a flight. These days, they features everything from excellent eateries to spas, and even a library in Amsterdam's case. Well, the SkyTeam alliance is fully aware that their member airlines fly to some of the coolest airports in the world, and they wanted to show off a bit with a video series of famous names showing around their favorite hubs.
Granted, we've already featured the Pam Ann-takes-LHR video, but up until today's web searching, we didn't know there were more to the series. Enjoy!
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Smell that? That's the scent of brand new airport, as Atlanta's Airport opens the doors to their brand new Maynard H. Jackson International Terminal today. The building is 1.2 million square feet with 12 gates, and cost $1.4 billion to complete. Now that is finally completed, however, what can you expect as a traveler winging your way to or from far-away destinations?
Yummy, convenient food options. Pei Wei Asian Diner, The Varsity (classic American burgers and hot dogs), Ecco Kitchen, Jekyll Island Seafood Company, Lorena Garcia Tapas Bar, Maison Mathis, Sweet Auburn Market Café, The Pecan, and The original El Taco will fill out the terminal, and of course there will be a Starbucks. Notice no Sbarro for reheated, overpriced pizza slices! Progress!
(Hopefully) faster, easier security. There'll be two security checkpoints in the new terminal, with a total of 13 lanes. Of course those won't all be in use at the same time, but we have high hopes for an airport that's been designed after 9/11, after the introduction of mobile boarding passes and after years of new security rule after new security rule.
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The biggest airport news of the year here at home is probably the planned expansion of Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. Things are supposed to be ready to go around May 16, so if you’re heading through or to the airport anytime soon be sure to check out all the new airport goodies. We’re excited to see how the new terminal differs from all the others at the airport, and of course there’s a particular interest in all the new shops and restaurants.
Initially there should be like 20 shops and restaurants up and running, and after that there will be a trickle of new options here and there that just couldn’t get it together in time for the grand opening. As far as eats are concerned there’s a brand new airport outpost of the city’s iconic hamburger and hot dog palace known as The Varsity. It looks like they might even be selling their famous chili right at the counter, so you can bring some home as an airport souvenir. Just be ready to go with your order when they call out “what’ll ya have?”
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Despite the lack of a brand new Chick-fil-A, we’re still pretty excited to see what the brand new international terminal at Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport is all about. The hard hats are coming off slowly but surely, and workers are starting to clean up the construction debris in preparation for the terminal’s grand opening. However, before the new slice of the airport can start getting passengers and planes, the airport is asking for your help to get things ready.
On Wednesday, May 2, the airport is planning a trial run of the new facility and they need like 1,500 volunteers to help test things out. We’re not sure if you’re going to need to flush all the toilets at exactly the same time, but all we know is that we’re a little jealous that we’re too far from Atlanta to easily help out.
Volunteers will get a script and an itinerary, as airport officials want fake travelers to fully act out their role in and around the airport. They’re even asking that you bring a couple pieces of luggage, so that they can test out the baggage handling system. It sounds like they promise that they’ll returned things unharmed, but we’d probably bring the Samsonite instead of the Louis Vuitton just in case.
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Oh my god. Well if it wasn't obvious before, it is now: airline/airport flashmobs are the new black.
Latest on the travel flashmob trend is Delta, who just barely released a 5-minute dance, incorporating flight crew and operations peeps from ATL, JFK, DTW and TOC (Technical Operations Center).
It starts off corny, but stay with it. It gets...cornier, but omg do we want to hug everyone involved. See the full video:
There’s already plenty of awesome options for eats when you travel to—or through—Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, but now even more new restaurants on due to arrive. It’s all part of the latest and greatest addition to the airport, as ATL’s new international terminal is scheduled to debut later this year.
Airport officials haven’t specified where—or when—each new establishment will do its thing, but many of these will hold grand openings later this year, between the new terminal and other vacancies across the airport. In total the city council handed out like $3 billion in concession contracts; that should keep travelers satisfied and satiated for like the next ten years or so.
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Everyone has an opinion on Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, but lovers and haters can probably agree that the place’s newest terminal should be good for travelers.
The airport already has like 20 terminals—there’s actually six concourses off the main terminal—but they’re planning to add on one more after Terminal E. We’re still several months away, but the billion dollar project should be finished up by next spring. Flying through, we’ve noticed that things on the outside look pretty close to being done, so once the inside is loaded up with a Starbucks or two it should be ready to go.
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TSA has been a veritable mad scientist's laboratory of experiments lately, all aimeddepending on how cynical you areeither at improving security, getting the public to stop whining about intrusive security measures, or some combination of the two (hint: it's some combination of the two).
They're going out of their way not to pat down babies, they're launching Israeli-style security screenings, they're rolling out gingerbread man scanners, and now they're launching a new program to speed frequent fliers through security. Ambitious!
The new program, dubbed PreCheck, is in its pilot phase at ATL, MIA, DFW, and DTW. Selected frequent fliers who shared their information with TSA before they arrived at the airport are being offeredin exchangea line that allows them get through screening much more quickly. It's kind of "basic trade-off," as the Associated Press writeup so eloquently puts it.
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Does it make us bad people that we sort of don't care about this? A passenger broke down because TSA agents poked into her large hair. We don't think it's a case of racial profilingeven the ostensible victim seems to be complaining about the intrusive patdown itself, not its motivationand after that we just kind of can't get worked up. Plus Jaunted writers have gone through similar searches, and left the screening area decidedly untraumatized.
As the world’s busiest airport, ATL can be pretty stressful. And, on one of the tightest connections we’ve ever had, a couple of weeks ago, we were feeling that stress ourselves.
That was until we walked out onto concourse E and saw this small exhibit about Dr Martin Luther King Jr’s life, containing photographs and items including King’s radio, the robe he wore when accepting the Nobel Peace Prize and the suit he wore to meet Lyndon Johnson.
Sadly, because of our tight connection, we didn’t get to spend enough time looking at it, but from the airport’s website, it appears that it’s a long-term loan from the King Center, and part of ATL’s Airport Art Program. Other exhibits include an astronomy gallery and a 30ft dinosaur in the main terminal atrium. Because there’s nothing like getting your adrenalin pumping with thoughts of Jurassic Park before catching a flight, right?
Beat that, Amsterdam.