Road to airport repaved
A steep decline in air travel due to COVID-19 gave the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport an opportunity. Glumack Drive, the quarter-mile roadway guiding motorists to the airport’s Terminal 1, as well as parking and the InterContinental Hotel, is getting a badly needed overhaul. With fewer travelers flying these days, the Metropolitan Airports Commission decided to repave the thoroughfare. The $3.5 million project was made possible due to the availability of federal funds related to the reduction in passenger traffic caused by the pandemic. The new four-lane road will be concrete with a life span of up to 40 years. The project dovetails with the $26 million resurfacing of Hwy. 5 on the edge of the airport’s property.
Delta drops more rules, fees
Delta Air Lines has announced another batch of customer-friendly rule changes regarding award tickets and ticket changes. SkyMiles award tickets have become more flexible. Previously there was a 72-hour cutoff for changing or canceling a SkyMiles ticket, but now you can change or cancel most domestic award tickets right up to your departure time. Delta added that it has ended change and redeposit fees for most domestic award tickets. Also, a month after permanently eliminating change fees on most paid tickets, Delta clarified that if you switch to a cheaper flight, you’ll receive a future travel credit. The exception to all of the above changes, of course, is travel booked in the Basic Economy class. Delta had already waived change fees on any travel purchased between March 1 and Dec. 31, 2020, or departing through March 31, 2021.
Simon Peter Groebner
Cruises banned until Oct. 31
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s cruise ban will expire Oct. 31 — over the objections of the CDC’s director, according to a report by the news outlet Axios. According to Axios, CDC Director Robert Redfield wanted to push the ban on cruises to February but was overruled during a meeting Tuesday with Vice President Mike Pence at the White House. The current no-sail order was set to expire Sept. 30 without an extension. Cruising in U.S. waters has been banned since March due to the COVID-19 pandemic. According to a Miami Herald investigation, more than 3,800 cases of COVID-19 and 110 deaths have been linked to 86 oceangoing ships, or one-third of the global cruise fleet. The cruise companies have published plans they say will prevent much of the passenger and crew deaths, hospitalizations and stranded ships the industry experienced in the fall and summer, but the CDC has not yet allowed them to resume passenger operations.
A $400 million renovation
Even as hotels confront the reality of a pandemic that has stifled tourism, San Diego’s most iconic property, the Hotel del Coronado, is not slowing its yearslong, $400 million renovation. The latest phase of the project to make its debut encompasses an expansive rooftop bar and restaurant overlooking the hotel pool and beachfront, an updated pool area, and a complete redo of its 97 cabana guest rooms, some of which directly face the ocean. The ongoing renovation is billed as the most costly upgrade since the hotel opened in 1888, and a significant portion of it is expected to be completed by April. Among those are renovations of the 368-room Victorian building and the 214-room ocean tower, which is expected to be finished by Memorial Day.
San Diego Union-Tribune