The U.S. State Department issued a worldwide travel warning after President Obama announced Sunday night that American forces killed terrorist leader Osama bin Laden. It says there is an increased risk for anti-American violence and is encouraging anyone who is traveling abroad to sign up for the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program.
The free program provides travelers with current information about the country they’re visiting, including warnings about long-term conditions that make a country dangerous and alerts about short-term conditions that pose risks to Americans traveling overseas. The information you provide about your trip when you enroll also will allow the State Department to better assist you in case of an emergency. To learn more about the type of assistance you can receive, see What the State Department Can and Can’t Do in a Crisis.
While the U.S. State Department warn travelers of the “enhanced potential for anti-American violence”, this doesn’t mean you’ll see stricter security at the airport. The Department of Homeland Security remains at a heightened state of vigilance, but does not intend to issue an alert at this time.
Here’s some more travel news you can use:
- American Airlines is readying pay-per view video rentals that, rather than being shown on an in-seat monitor, will be streamed over WiFi to your iPad, iPhone or other gadget during the flight. The new system – which will be managed by Aircell, which already operates in-flight WiFi on select AA aircraft – will allow the airline to offer significantly more content than is currently available for in-flight entertainment, including movies and TV shows. Pricing hasn’t been announced yet, but AA says such a service could cost $3 to $5 for a movie and $1 to $3 to view a TV episode.
- The Fareologists at Bing Travel today issued their forecast for the 2011 summer travel season, predicting airfare and hotel costs will continue to swell. Compared with last year, airfare is expected to be up 15 percent, with tickets averaging $561, up from $485 last summer. Summer hotel costs will rise by more than 7 percent, with average costs at $242, versus $227 last year.
- If you’re traveling this summer, don’t expect to have better luck finding discounted hotel rooms. Demand for hotel rooms has been growing over the last year and will be 2.5% higher this summer than last summer, according to Smith Travel Research, a hospitality consulting firm in Tennessee. The growing demand will push room rates to an average of $103 per night this summer, up 4.1% from last summer, according to Smith Travel’s latest forecast. This is just another reason why you should be subscribed to our deals newsletter. It’s usually stacked with hotel deals.