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September 21, 2014 / 26 Elul, 5774
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Posts Tagged ‘travel’

TSA and Customs Issue Etrog Travel Advisories

Sunday, September 15th, 2013

WASHINGTON (JTA) — U.S. authorities released travel guidelines for Sukkot.

“TSA’s screening procedures do not prohibit the carrying of the four plants used during Sukkot – a palm branch, myrtle twigs, willow twigs, and a citron – in airports, through or security checkpoints, or on airplanes,” the Transportation Security Administration said in a statement, noting the dates of this year’s Sukkot holiday, from Sept. 18-25.

The TSA notice said, however, that all passengers undergo security screening at checkpoints.

In a separate statement, U.S. Customs and Border Protection also noted that the four species were allowed entry, but noted a number of restrictions subject to inspection.

“Travelers will be asked to open the container with the ethrog and unwrap it,” its advisory stated. “The agriculture specialist will inspect the ethrog. If either insect stings or pests are found, the ethrog will be prohibited from entering the United States. If neither is found, the traveler will be allowed to rewrap and re-box the ethrog for entry into the United States.”

Twigs of willow from Europe are banned, it continued, and any sign of pests or disease will mean confiscation of the product.
In a press statement noting the allowances, Rabbi Levi Shemtov, who directs American Friends of Lubavitch, also urged observant Jews to cooperate with airline staff and authorities, for instance when praying aboard aircraft.

“Particularly, one should let flight attendants know if they will be davening in flight BEFORE they begin, and understand the implications, as well as potential prosecution, for ignoring requests to sit down when requested, etc.,” said Shemtov, who consulted with Rabbi Abba Cohen, the director of the Washington office for Agudath Israel of America, in setting out the guidelines. “For example, flight attendants do not usually understand ‘nu,’ ‘uh,’ and hand signals, etc. especially when you are already in tallis and tefillin.”

Shemtov told JTA that religious Jews should appreciate the efforts of travel authorities to facilitate their travel.

“We in the Jewish community are fortunate to live with an unprecedented level of personal liberty,” he said. “I hope everyone will appreciate that cooperation with authorities that are so sympathetic to our traditions is the least we can do in return.”

El Al Reinstates Eilat Flights after Safety Concerns

Thursday, September 12th, 2013

El Al Airlines has reinstated flights to Eilat, after having cancelled its three daily daytime flights from Ben Gurion Airport on Tuesday because of concerns about the safety of new landing and takeoff designed to reduce the chances of a terrorist attack from Egypt.

The airline’s nighttime flights, whose routing had not been changed, were not cancelled. Other Israeli airlines that fly from Ben Gurion to Eilat have not cancelled their flights.

El Al said the new traffic patterns did not meet international aviation safety standards, but it reinstated the flights on Wednesday, after being given permission to use the old routes until a compromise is brokered.

Last month, Israeli authorities ordered the closure of Eilat’s airport based on a tip from Egyptian security services that a radical Muslim terrorist cell planned to launch mid-range missiles at the airport. In April, two long-range rockets fired from the Sinai Desert by an Islamist terrorist group hit Eilat.

El Al Catches ‘Luggage Handlers’ Who Stole Passengers’ Valuables

Sunday, September 1st, 2013

El Al video cameras have caught seven baggage handlers at JFK airport who stole passengers’ valuables, including cash, watches, computers and jewelry.

The ariline became suspicious when a number of passengers complained about missing items. El Al placed a video camera in April to monitor the thieves and discovered they did more than just handle luggage. The film caught them stuffing their clothes with thousands of dollars of goods, some of which were later found in their homes by investigators.

IDF Re-Opens Eilat Airport Departures after Scare Warning

Thursday, August 8th, 2013

The IDF allowed departing flights to take off from Eilat’s international airport Thursday night after ordering it closed for two hours, without any explanation other than to note “an evaluation of the situation.”

The temporary closure probably was connected to terrorist activity in the neighboring Sinai Peninsula, where Egyptian forces have arrested approximately 100 terrorists in the past several days.

Planes taking off from Eilat have been equipped with an anti-missile system since this past April in order to defend passengers against shoulder-launched anti-aircraft missiles that terrorists are known to possess.

Israel’s Ben Gurion Airport Building Its First Hotel

Tuesday, July 30th, 2013

Ben Gurion Airport finally will join most other major international airports by having a hotel for travelers.

The Israel Airports Authority has approved construction for a hotel on land adjacent to the airport’s Terminal 3, where almost all international passengers arrive.

The hotel will allow direct access to the passenger hall and terminal and will cater to businesspeople who arrive in Israel for short visits to participate in conferences or events, the Airport Authority said.

Saudi Arabia Airline’s ‘No Israelis Allowed’ Policy Violates Law

Wednesday, July 17th, 2013

Saudi Arabia Airline refuses to issue tickets in New York for Israelis, even if they are only stopping off in Saudi Arabia for a connecting flight, a policy that contradicts federal law.

The airline’s website asks travelers for their citizenship but does not have an option available for “Israel” although it does have options for other countries, even Antarctica, The New York Post reported.

Mayoral candidate Bill de Blasio was quick to jump on the report, and one of his staff called the airline, saying he was an Israeli trying to fly from JFK to India. The airline agent said he could not fly with Saudi Arabia Airlines.

United States law states, “[An] air carrier or foreign air carrier may not subject a person in air transportation to discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex or ancestry.”

“No city in the world has closer ties to Israel than we do, and yet Israeli citizens are being discriminated against right here at JFK. It’s not only illegal; it’s an affront to who we are,” said Blasio.

Yad Vashem Ranked a Top Museum by Travel Website

Sunday, July 14th, 2013

Yad Vashem, Israel’s Holocaust memorial and museum, was ranked fourth in the top 25 museums in the world by the travel website TripAdvisor.

Yad Vashem also was awarded the websites 2013 Certificate of Excellence award, given to sites that consistently receive outstanding traveler reviews. Approximately one million people visit Yad Vashem annually.

TripAdvisor is a popular travel website driven by reviews and comments of tourists and travelers. To qualify for a Certificate of Excellence, tourist sites must maintain an overall rating of four or higher out of a possible five, as reviewed by travelers on TripAdvisor. Yad Vashem is currently listed as first among 146 recommended sites to visit in Jerusalem.

Visitors who commented on the site applauded the “moving and informative displays,” the “incredible use of architecture, audio visual, photos, and actual items to recreate a time in history that should never happen again” calling it an “emotional, educational and inspiring experience” an “unbelievably moving experience” that is a “must-see” for any traveler to Israel.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/yad-vashem-ranked-a-top-museum-by-travel-website/2013/07/14/

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