Americans ‘to Travel More despite Woes’

WASHINGTON ~ Americans will increase their foreign travel this year despite a soft economy and weak dollar, a survey showed.

The survey conducted by Global Insight for the American Automobile Association suggests 25.1 million Americans will be traveling internationally this summer, an increase of 2.6 percent over last year.

The report includes all travel outside of the United States, including Canada and Mexico. Spending is likely to increase for travel as well, although some of that is accounted by a weaker dollar, the report found. It predicted spending will rise 5.7 percent to US$30.7 billion while traveling internationally during the months of June, July and August.

EU Drops Maximum Carry-On Limit

BRUSSELS ~ The European Commission dropped plans this week to limit the size of carry-on bags allowed on airplanes after finding the measure would be too much of a burden for passengers.

As a result, the size of carry on bags allowed on planes will continue to be set by airlines and EU countries will have the right to impose stricter limits if they see fit.

“We must seek to balance security with passenger convenience,” said EU Transport Commissioner Jacques Barrot. “In this case it is clear that the inconvenience of additional limits would outweigh the advance in security.”

Sheikh Bans Booze at Cairo Hyatt

CAIRO ~ A luxury Cairo hotel has stopped the sale of alcoholic drinks on the orders of its Saudi Arabian owner, who is a practicing Muslim, the assistant manager said.

Owner Sheikh Abdel Aziz Ibrahim bin Ibrahim visited the five-star Grand Hyatt Cairo on Saturday and ordered all alcohol stocks be destroyed and banned its sale to conform with Islamic law, which forbids alcohol consumption.

A tourist official who spoke on condition of anonymity said the hotel could be stripped of three stars if it continued to not serve alcohol, as three-, four- and five-star hotels were obliged to serve alcoholic drinks.

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