Frequent-flyer cashes in miles for space trip

by Jon Surmacz on September 29, 2006

Frequent-flyer cashes in miles for space trip — The closest that Alan Watts came to experiencing outer space was on a theme park ride — now the British businessman has traded his multitude of frequent-flyer miles for a real journey 75 miles (120 kilometers) above Earth, he said Thursday. (AP)

‘Idiot’ barb gets passenger detained — A Wisconsin man who wrote “Kip Hawley is an Idiot” on a plastic bag containing toiletries said he was detained at an airport security checkpoint for about 25 minutes before authorities concluded the statement was not a threat. (CNN)

EU warns of chaos if no air data deal with U.S. — Transatlantic air travel could be thrown into chaos if European and U.S. officials fail on Friday to replace a deal on sharing passenger data that is set to expire, the European Commission said. (Reuters)

Travelers to Africa, Asia returning with new virus — Travelers to parts of Africa and Asia are returning with a new mosquito-borne virus and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warned on Thursday it could become entrenched in new areas. (Reuters)

Capsule, space tourist return to Earth — The capsule carrying the world’s first female space tourist touched down Friday on the Kazakh steppe after a bone-jarring journey from the international space station. (AP)

New Thailand airport opens despite coup — Thousands of departing and arriving passengers christened Bangkok’s new international airport as it officially opened Thursday with all commercial airlines transferring operations to the sleek new hub. (AP)

Carry-on rules not too sobering for wineries — Six weeks after travelers were restricted from carrying wine aboard airplanes, some wineries report they’ve been able to maintain tasting room sales by offering new shipping and stowage options. (AP)

$40,000 to make like Hef for a night — The club isn’t the most extravagant Playboy venture in Vegas. That distinction belongs to the Hugh Hefner Sky Villa. Even in a city known for over-the-top luxury, the 9,000-square-foot pad may be beyond the pale. (AP)

Carrie Charney, Christopher Elliott, John Frenaye, Charles Leocha, Marge Purnell, Valerie Schneider, Mary Staley, Stephanus Surjaputra, Richard Wong.

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