Travel News: May 31 – June 6

Here is a round-up of this week’s travel news – from a crackdown on drunks, non-reclining seats, and a teddy bear called “Ben Flyin”, to auction seat upgrades and lost luggage. Enjoy!

Extended Jurisdiction for Unruly Mid-Flight Behavior Could be on the Way

Following a spike in unruly behavior onboard flights, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) is encouraging governments to extend jurisdiction to include destination countries and airports so that authorities have a better chance of convicting perpetrators. Until now, jurisdiction has been limited to the country of the aircraft’s registration.

Monarch Airlines Abolishes Reclining Seats

Speaking of unruly behavior, Monarch Airlines conducted a survey last year that revealed reclining seats were one of the most common causes of mid-flight anger. The result? Come this summer the airline will be introducing new lightweight seats with more legroom and no option to recline.

Want and Upgrade? Try bidding on your Seat

Cathay Pacific is the latest airline to consider implementing an online auction system that allows booked passengers to bid to upgrade their seat.

United Airlines “Ben Flyin” Teddy Bear to Help Happy Hearts Foundation

United Airlines has introduced the seventh limited-edition bear in its Adventure Bear program. Under the program, United customers can purchase the “Ben Flying’ teddy online by making a $20 or more contribution through July 31. The proceeds go to Happy Hearts Fund – a non-profit foundation dedicated to rebuilding schools after natural disasters.

Things Are Looking Up With Latest Lost Luggage Stats

SITA, an aviation communications and technology company that tracks baggage performance each year, says that the number of  bags mishandled last year was half the rate of those in 2007. According to Scott McCartney of the Wall Street Journal, the improvement is tied to how airlines are now charging fees for checked bags. The new revenue means more money for new equipment, as well as higher expectations from customers. Updates

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