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“Chaos” Predicted at Airports and Richard Branson Christens a Scarlet Lady

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Rene’s Points For Better Travel, a division of Chatterbox Entertainment, Inc. has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Rene’s Points For Better Travel and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers. Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.


Real ID problems could get very, well, real at airports. And Richard Branson named a Virgin Voyages’ first ship today.

Here are the quick scoops:

Airports Might Get (More?) Chaotic

The Airports Council International-North America warns that unless the government postpones the Real ID deadline of October 1, “we’re going to have a real crisis on our hands” and “that thousands of passengers could be denied boarding and left stranded.”

If you can’t get a Real ID-compliant identification card or driver license, you can also use:

  • Passport
  • Passport card
  • Military ID
  • Global Entry card

The Global Entry card option might be difficult for residents of a certain state, though, because —

New Yorkers Are Being Denied Global Entry Applications

We learned a few weeks ago that the DHS indefinitely suspended Global Entry applications and renewals for New York state residents.

The effects have been swift.

Conde Nast Traveler reports “roughly 80,000 New Yorkers who had been conditionally approved for Global Entry or had applications pending will be automatically rejected because of the state’s suspension from the program.”

New York residents currently enrolled in the program, though, are safe — until their memberships expire.

(H/T Larry K.)

Virgin Voyages Scarlet Lady ship
Photo courtesy of Virgin Voyages

Richard Branson Names Virgin Voyages Ship “the Scarlet Lady”

Virgin Voyages’ first ship officially got its name today: Richard Branson dubbed her the Scarlet Lady.

The 2270-passenger ocean liner will carry passengers in April. The Scarlet Lady features “superyacht-inspired cabin design redefines your view of staterooms.” Check out this Rock Star Suite:

Massive Suite on Virgin Voyages
Photo courtesy of Virgin Voyages

I assume that Virgin Redheads will be served on these cruises. Too bad René is done cruising this year!

Airline Captain Answers Questions About Contagious Diseases

Curious how airlines are trained to handle something like coronavirus? Airline captain John Cox has some answers.

The Leaning Tower of — Dallas?

Move over, Pisa. There’s another famous leaning tower — at least, for a few more days.

— Chris

Featured image courtesy of ©iStock.com/obertcicchetti

Rene’s Points For Better Travel, a division of Chatterbox Entertainment, Inc. has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Rene’s Points For Better Travel and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers. Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.


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3 Comments

  1. New York can easily fix their Real ID problem just like they broke it. Besides the only Real ID route that isn’t open to them is the Trusted Traveler, Nexxus / GE system (which is New York’s own fault). They can get a state driver’s license that is Real ID compliant (Sure they will have to produce a birth certificate and proof of residence which is the whole point) but then again you have to produce a lot of documents for GE as well. They can use a passport, passport card and those don’t even have to be a US passport. There are also other documents you can provide to get a compliant ID. The airport council may be accurate but it will only be the passenger’s fault for not knowing. They have to set a deadline at some point and there will always be people who don’t know to get a compliant ID just like there are people that don’t know how to go through security lines at the airport. Think about it this way. Do you really want someone to be a “Trusted Traveler” with reduced security screening if they can be fully checked out to be “trusted”?

  2. HuntingtonGuy Reply

    Locking NY residents out of Trusted Traveler programs is inconvenient and unnecessary, it is also a self inflicted wound. NYS government routinely does things that have disparate impact on law abiding citizens. I’ve already been notified that my GE will not renew and I am disappointed that my upcoming travel will require I allocate additional time, but I absolutely understand why the problem exists.
    Without getting into a political argument I’d hope the airlines and traveler advocates would be making their voices heard on the issue before the problem gets even worse.

  3. Chris, what say we use your forum to promote reasoned calm through the dreaded deadline, rather than repeating chaos predictions for post-10/01/20 travelers? To that end, I would argue the ACI-NA’s quotes you selected are baseless and overly dramatic.

    My logic? First let’s stipulate this deadline will only affect domestic flights, in that a passport is required and verified at the gate for most* international flights. (*Delta is testing/using facial recognition, rather than passport checks, for boarding some international flights out of Atlanta, taking the assumption you are carrying your passport…the obvious problem of Delta’s assumption will present itself at the other end sooner or later, [evil grin] mwa-ha-ha-ha.)

    First point of potential denied boarding or stranding would be ticketing and/or boarding pass. Sure, without a proper ID, you might be unable to buy a ticket or get a boarding pass at the ticket counter, but since you can both purchase a ticket and check-in online, and then subsequently get (print) your boarding pass without going to the ticket counter, this point is effectively a non-issue.

    Second chance of stranding or denied boarding is the security checkpoint. From the TSA website (link: http://www.tsa.gov/travel/security-screening/identification ), showing up at the checkpoint to clear security with a boarding pass but without ID *will* result in additional screening. However, this will not necessary disallow you from entering the sterile area to catch your flight — failing the security screening is a possibility for anyone, and we are all subject to additional screening and associated delays at the checkpoint, TTP/REAL-ID or no, so this point is essentially a non-issue relative to their quote.

    Last point in the sequence, boarding. At least in the US, there are no routine ID checks at the gate for boarding domestic flights, so the final point is also a non-issue.

    Maybe I’m looking at their quotes with too critical of an eye, so let’s follow the logic a step further, to give ACI-NA all benefit of the doubt. Yes, it is true that by being late to the gate, denied boarding is a possibility — a virtual certainty if the door/flight has already closed — yet this is nothing new; it will continue after the deadline passes, and without regard of their ID or lack of, unless… Could it be the ACI-NA is tipping us off that airlines, starting October 1, 2020, will begin 100% passenger ID checks at domestic gates, and deny boarding to anyone without REAL-ID??? If that’s what the quote is about, Chris, you just scooped all the other bloggers with this story! Otherwise, ACI-NA’s ‘denied and stranded’ crisis claims sound like a huge pile of public relations [edited for mixed company].

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