Travel Briefs

The first-ever commercial passenger flight between Israel and the United Arab Emirates, which was also the first flight to Israel from any of the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf (GCC) countries, occurred on Oct. 19 with an Emirates flight from Tel Aviv to Abu Dhabi.

The UAE signed an accord with Israel on Sept. 15 recognizing it as a country. Citizens of the two countries, along with Bahrain, which recognized Israel in an agreement also ratified on Sept. 15, now...


Delta Air Lines has added an interactive world map to its Fly Delta smartphone app, free on Apple and Android. The map gives up-to-date information on entry requirements in regard to COVID-19 for each country in the world.

The information includes what you need to take with you before boarding your flight and what procedures you can expect once you reach your destination. This can include COVID-19 testing, quarantining and more.

The US Department of Transportation made a ruling on Dec. 2 that the only service animals to be allowed on planes are dogs. It further ruled that “emotional support animals” are not a category of service animal, which they defined as “a dog that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of a person with a disability.”

Unusual emotional-support animals on planes, such as pigs, peacocks, ducks and others, have made news in the last few...


A new Thailand tourist visa was introduced on Nov. 23 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

To apply, a traveler needs to fill out a visa application form and a health declaration form, both available from Thai consulates (visit for a link to the consulate nearest you).

The traveler then must send in his paperwork along with his passport and two passport-sized photos as well as confirmation of accommodation at an approved hotel for at least 15 nights (at press...


Low-cost European airline easyJet ( will begin limiting access to their overhead luggage bins on Feb. 10. Starting on that date, only passengers paying for a more expensive ticket will be allowed bin space for their carry-on luggage. Passengers paying only the basic fare must place carry-ons underneath the seats in front of them.

Israel is creating “Green Zones” — areas that require a negative COVID-19 test result to enter — in tourist spots around the country.

The first areas designated Green Zones, created on Nov. 18, were two clusters of hotels along the Dead Sea and another in the resort area of Eilat on the Red Sea. To enter them, a visitor must prove he took a test within the previous 48 hours. Alternatively, rapid-response tests will be available at entry points. Testing is free...


For anyone interested in driving around the Australian island of Tasmania, the website Lap of Tasmania ( can help in planning an itinerary and booking lodging and a rental car. Travelers can choose a 7-, 10- or 14-day trip or a specialized trip (foodie, nature, luxury, etc.). Each trip guide includes suggestions for enhancing or extending certain sections.

“Dateless Departures” were introduced by Exodus Travels (Toronto, ON, Canada; 844/227-9087, on Dec. 3. Travelers who reserve a tour to a country are guaranteed a spot in the first Exodus tour group to go there once that country reopens its borders.

Dateless Departure purchasers also will benefit from virtual pre-trip briefings with tour leaders, health experts and local guides, and they will be joined by a professional photographer on the trip....