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Flights: What Christmas traditions will the major airlines be following this year? | Travel News | Travel

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Christmas is a time when many Britons choose to head abroad. But what can holidaymakers expect on their flights over the festive season?

These are the ways the major airlines are celebrating Christmas this year, from Ryanair to easyJet.

British Airways

BA passengers will be able to enjoy a Christmas on board. The airline will serve 66,000 Christmas dinners in total over the festive season. To be precise, 330,000 brussels sprouts will be prepped alongside 270,000 roast potatoes and 8250kgs of turkey.

A record number of mince pies will also be served, with nearly 100,000 of the festive treats given out to customers.

They will also offer up to 40 new Christmas films, TV show episodes and audio available, including popular favourites Elf and The Holiday.

Ryanair

Ryanair will not be offering flights on Christmas Day – the only day in the calendar when Ryanair does not fly.

The last flight on Christmas Eve will land at 5.55pm and they will resume on Boxing Day.

Virgin Atlantic

Virgin will be offering a full festive feast. “We always offer a full Christmas dinner onboard in all cabins,” an airline spokeswoman told Express.co.uk.

“Customers can tuck into roast turkey, potatoes, pigs in blankets and all the trimmings.”

The airline has also branched in the fashion sphere with their very own Christmas jumper.

“The jumper will be worn by all the cabin crew and airport teams over Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day. Even founder Sir Richard Branson will be sporting one all the way from the Caribbean!” said the spokeswoman.

EasyJet

EasyJet, like Ryanair, has no flights on Christmas Day and will not be celebrating the holiday.

A spokeswoman told Express.co.uk: “There isn’t anything special of note” over the festive season.

Emirates

Passengers travelling in Economy will be able to enjoy a festive menu – turkey roll with mashed potato, pan-fried Vienna Chicken Sausage, green peas, baby carrots and cranberry jus lié followed by milk chocolate mousse with cranberry compote topped with a reindeer chocolate button.

However, those in First and Business class will benefit from an even more superior feast – roasted turkey breast and apricot stuffing, roast potatoes with creamy brussels sprouts with turkey bacon and cranberry jus lié followed by festive sweets such as a chocolate Yule log garnished with meringue drops, chocolate stars and a Gingerbread Man or a Chocolate Mint dome decorated with snow fondant and a festive leaf served with crème anglaise.

Young flyers this festive season will also receive a chocolate lollipop featuring a reindeer with all children’s lunches and dinners.

No matter which airline or class holidaymakers are travelling this winter, passengers need to remember there are certain popular festive items they won’t be able to pack in their hand luggage.

For instance, brandy butter may start off solid but at the end of a flight it can turn into a liquid which means airlines count it as such, so again, it will have to be under 100ml to be able to fly with you. The same rule applies to camembert.

Christmas crackers are also a tricky item. Under heightened security measures, airlines such as Ryanair, Etihad, Emirates and Norwegian Airlines have all banned Christmas crackers. 

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Travel & Escape

American woman faces $2,800 parking bill after leaving car in Toronto during pandemic

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Parking in the city can be costly, but one American woman is learning just how bad it can be after being unable to retrieve her car for nearly a year.

Detroit resident Kim Richardson left her 2004 Honda Element at the Park2Sky lot by Pearson airport in March 2020 before flying out to Europe for a medical procedure. She originally planned to retrieve it within two weeks but partway through her trip, the Canada-US border got closed due to COVID-19 precautions.

Richardson’s return flight was rerouted to Detroit and she’s been unable to return to Toronto since.

What was originally a $100 bill has now inflated to $2,800 as the lot’s owner says he has a business to operate and is owed payment for 11 months of storage. However, Richardson believes she’s being extorted for an issue beyond her control.

Park2Sky personnel claim that several Americans who found themselves in similar predicaments have had their cars shipped home.

“I don’t understand, I don’t know what’s going on here. Business is down, I’m not making any money at all. People who leave their car are paid. She’s the only one that hasn’t paid,” said the owner to CBC News this week.

The stalemate is expected to last a while longer as travel restrictions remain in place and Ontario Provincial Police have said they won’t get involved in a civil matter.

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All systems are go for St. Lawrence Cruise Lines in 2021

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KINGSTON — Despite Canada’s newly extended cruise ship ban, Canadians still have a small-ship cruising alternative in 2021 with St. Lawrence Cruise Lines.

The small-ship operator, which sails on the St. Lawrence and Ottawa Rivers, has confirmed operations for 2021, with overnight cruises on both rivers from May 20 to Oct. 24. A variety of cruises ranging from four to seven nights will depart from Kingston, Ottawa and Quebec City, sailing exclusively in domestic waters with stops at select ports in Ontario and Quebec.

On Feb. 4, Canada’s Minister of Transport, Omar Alghabra announced that Canada’s cruise ship ban will be extended until Feb. 28, 2022. This measure, which effectively prohibits cruise vessels carrying more than 100 passengers from operating in Canadian waters, does not impact the small-ship operations of St. Lawrence Cruise Lines and its 32-stateroom CANADIAN EMPRESS.

“We are excited to offer travellers a small ship option for the 2021 season,” said President Jason Clark. “Our overnight cruises stay close to shore in Canadian waters and our COVID-19 Health and Safety program has been recognized for its high standards.”

This past December, the cruise line was awarded the Safe Travels Stamp by the Tourism Industry Association of Ontario (TIAO) for adherence to global standards of health and hygiene. The program includes a wide range of safety measures, including reduced passenger loads, masking, physical distancing and hospital-grade electrostatic disinfecting for both private staterooms and shared spaces. Plus, all staterooms have access to fresh air, climate controls and views of the river.

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Here’s How Canada’s ‘Screening Officers’ Will Check On Travellers During Quarantine

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The federal government is reminding all travellers in Canada that “Screening Officers” may pay them a visit post-arrival.

In a statement about the country’s latest travel restrictions, Transport Canada confirmed that newly-trained officials would be tasked with checking up on travellers during their two-week quarantine period.

The role of the Screening Officers will be to visit travellers’ quarantine locations to “establish contact, confirm identify and confirm that travellers are at the place of quarantine they identified upon entry into Canada.”

This is to make sure individuals are complying with Canada’s mandatory 14-day quarantine requirement.

The checks will be conducted across 35 Canadian cities, having already started in Montreal and Toronto back in January.

The officials will provide “compliance education” and will be able to issue verbal warnings, but stronger enforcement action will be referred to the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) and then law enforcement for follow-up checks. 

Failing to comply with the Quarantine Act or with Screening Officers’ instructions could result in fines of up to $750,000 or even jail time.

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