Tag: European UnionView All Tags
Airlines coming out of Indonesia don't exactly hold the best safety reputationseven the large national airline Garuda gets its bumps and scrapes in the headlines far too often, and you might remember that the European Union, which is a bit fussy about unsafe airlines, banned every single Indonesian airline in the middle of 2007.
Things are looking a little bit better than they have in the past. The EU has just lifted the bans on four of the airlines (including Garuda) and that's inspired the Indonesian government to throw a bit more money and attention at airline safety.
The Indonesian transport minister says his goal is to get all Indonesian airlines off the blacklist by the end of the year, and he's had this smart idea about recruiting more aircraft inspectors and aviation safety managers. Hopefully this means it won't be long until we can get more cheap flights to island paradise Bali and even expect to get there and back safely.
· Indonesia Aviation to Improve Safety Image [Business Traveller]
· Bali Boosts Its Airport But Skips New Shops [Jaunted]
· EU Blacklists Siem Reap Airways And Others [Jaunted]
Sweden Travel / Hertz / European Union / Cars / Rental Cars / Volvo / → All Tags
If you’re planning an official state visit to Sweden anytime soon, you’ll be happy to know you will be riding in style. At the beginning of the month, Sweden took over the presidency of the European Union, and one of their first acts was to name Volvo as the official vehicle of the EU.
Hello, efficiency: Volvo will coordinate everything through its marketing company, and will pass on the administration hassles for Hertz to deal with. And these cars transporting heads of state won’t be the typical boxy Volvo grocery-getter wagons either. They’re all part of the car company’s DRIVe program and offer low emissions and fuel consumption.
Now, instead of gas-guzzlers, the EU will be street-styling in flexible fuel vehicles that run on diesel and bioethanol. If you are sadly not a world leader headed to Sweden anytime soon, then of course you may instead go to your local Volvo dealer and pretend to be such. Or just catch a free ride during the UN climate change conference this winter in Copenhagen; Volvo will be strutting their green stuff there as well.
Related Stories: [Photo of a Volvo Helping Out a SAS plane: kjd]
· Volvo to be European Union's Official Car Starting July 1st [Automotive.com]
· IKEA Furniture Not For Sale in Stockholm Art Gallery [Jaunted]
· Sweden Travel coverage [Jaunted]
[Photo of a Volvo Helping Out a SAS plane: kjd]
Airlines / Low Cost Carriers / LCCs / Websites / RyanAir / Europe Travel / European Union / → All Tags
We've noticed recently that many of the European budget airlines are being well behaved about truth in advertising, showing the full costs for flights including previously hidden taxes and charges. But apparently the European Commission doesn't see it this way, according to its recent weekend of website trawling.
Authorities studied 400 websites for European airlines and found that half of them broke EU law in some way--not including taxes and charges in the prices, advertising "free" flights that weren't really free or attaching compulsory insurance to a plane ticket.
Austrians can hold their heads high, as none of the 20 Austrian airline websites were found to be misleading; at the other end of the scale, the Belgians are probably embarrassed that 46 out of the 48 Belgian websites studied broke the rules.
But while budget airlines were under fire for these kinds of customer betrayals, RyanAir thinks that the big guys should be targeted too: for example, the EC should check all those fuel surcharges we have to pay on regular airlines like British Airways or KLM. Seems like one way or the other, everybody's trying to rip us off.
European Union / Sex / YouTube / Movies / → All Tags
We've been wondering for a while what the European Union is really doing to help people like us globe-wanderers and now, thanks to their own promotional efforts, we know. The EU is not around for political stability, its cultural wonders, or to provide fast inter-country transport. It's there for sex.
Okay, not exactly sex: but films featuring sex. The European Commission itself has released a YouTube video featuring clips of soft-core porn, er, cinematic depictions of lovemaking from European movies. The EU is happily promoting both its financial support of these films and the idea of one Europe: "let's come together," they say. If this doesn't cause a rise in travel to The Continent, nothing will.
Who would've thought that joining the European Union would be such a boon for Romanian witches? Earlier we were worried that they'd all be losing money as they splashed out on English lessons, trying to prepare for what they thought would be a huge wave of English-speaking clients. While we're not sure if Tony Blair or Angela Merkel are rushing to Romania for some witchly assistance, it is apparently true that Romanian businesspeople are frantically making appointments.
Witchcraft is recognized as a "real profession" in Romania, and the local witches say that in response to EU entry,
They have adjusted their services as entrepreneurs turn to potions and spells to get the money they want.
These services include, just to name a couple, splashing application forms for EU funding with special potions and helping gay men (now protected under EU law) get more feminine features. As one witch said:
You cannot pretend you are a real witch if you cannot help a businessman get the European Union funds he wants.
European Union / Politics / Croatia / France / → All Tags
Croatians cannot be happy right now. Despite the fact that the Dalmatian Coast is on everyone's list as one of the top places to visit (well, for this past summer anyway), their accession to the European Union is more in doubt than ever before. Bummer.
After agreeing today to admit Romania and Bulgaria under rather harsh terms--certainly the stiffest for any new member states in the EU--the French PM, Domenique de Villepin asked "How far can we go without rendering the E.U. inefficient?". That's not good for the Croats (or Serbs, Turks, Montenegrins and Albanians), who were hoping to join the EU in 2009. Maybe if they promise to act with more of a French attitude, they'll be admitted? We say, toss those burek and start baking some baguettes.
[Image via Miguel Pereira/Flickr]
· Europe Set to Endorse Romania and Bulgaria [NYT]