Not Your Average Travel Stories: Week of Aug. 26

This week: Save money, find deals, see specials! Oh, and there’s that Hello Kitty plane, too.

Labor Day deals: Yes, you can get away this holiday weekend, even at the last minute – and save money. See all the specials on the Deals Blog.

Black hole: Did the UPS pilots who died in the Aug. 14 crash just before landing experience a hazardous ‘black hole effect’? Experts aren’t sure but it certainly sounds creepy.

Unexpected landing: If you don’t know anything about Pocatello, Idaho, here’s all you need to know: When a United plane made an emergency landing there this week (everyone was okay), airport employees immediately jumped in to take care of the passengers. Some brewed coffee while others ran out to buy a whole bunch of muffins and sandwiches so the travelers wouldn’t go hungry.

Pilots that might want to consider China (see below): NBC reports that some regional airline pilots make less than $20 an hour, and, they’re only paid for ‘time in the air’. If our math is correct, some make just under $25K a year and that’s before taxes are taken out.

Genius idea: According to those smart guys at Wired, Alaska Airlines is testing a better, faster way to board an airplane: They’re having people board from both the front and back doors. Two doors! Twice as many people! Well, maybe but sure sounds like a genius idea to us.

Good news, Nutmeggers: According to a report, the number of seats on flights between Los Angeles and Hartford, Connecticut (“The Nutmeg State”) rose by 9,000%. But we already told you about the West Coast’s raging fare war.

Hello, Kitty: You know those really cool Hello Kitty planes flown by EVA Air? You can see one at Los Angeles International Sept. 18. How do we know? We read it on a site called Hello Kitty Hell.

Oh, my: According to the Associated Press, “A former South Korean law enforcement officer has been sentenced to prison for trying to smuggle nearly 40,000 phony erectile dysfunction pills into the U.S.”

Pilots, here’s how to get rich: All you have to do, says the Wall Street Journal, is move to China and they will double your pay. However, they also say the workload is worse.

Emergency landings: First, a Delta plane heading to Atlanta has to land in Montgomery after pilot notices a “scent of smoke.” But nothing bad happened. Then, an American flight to Charlotte diverted to Little Rock when an engine went out. Again, nothing bad, but this is the last thing American needs now.

Fly with a celebrity: How did we miss this press release? “KLM launched ‘Be My Guest’ in 2012 [which] allows passengers to enter a virtual chat room and talk to famous celebrities.” However, we would be remiss if we did not point out that these are famous Dutch celebrities including “Armin van Buuren, Wubbo Ockels, Hella Jongerius, and Jeroen Krabbé.” [We must also point out that flying with American celebrities is not always a good thing]

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Published: August 26, 2013