Travel Briefs

In Tokyo’s Haneda Airport in Japan, passengers with mobility issues can hop on automated electric wheelchairs. The WHILL Automated Mobility Service chairs can be found at stations after the security check and in gate areas.

WHILL chairs include instructions in English. A person sits in the chair and chooses a destination within the airport from a prompt on a cell phone-sized screen. The chair then drives itself without any need for airport staff or a travel partner to push it....


After the European Union recommended, on Aug. 30, that member states not allow entry to nonessential travelers from the US because of the increase in COVID-19 hospitalizations in the US, some EU countries strengthened entry requirements for, or began outright denying, US leisure travelers.

New requirements have typically included proof of a negative COVID-19 test taken before arrival and quarantining after arrival. Many countries were also denying entry to unvaccinated Americans...


On Sept. 7, the tour and river cruise company Tauck (Wilton, CT; 800/788-7885, began requiring tour members on all of its tours and cruises to be vaccinated for COVID-19.

For reasons of customer and employee safety, and under local laws, an increasing number of tour companies are requiring tour members be vaccinated. (See Oct. ’21, page 29, for names of some other companies requiring vaccines.)


On the short-term-rental website Fairbnb (, each property listed must conform to a set of ethical rules so rentals are not harmful to communities.

Each person renting out their house, apartment, etc., on Fairbnb must meet strict criteria, such as owning no more than two homes in their city and properly following local short-term-rental laws. Local representatives vet the owners and properties before any rental can be listed, and neighborhood residents and businesses can...


Private guides for birding tours can be booked through Birding Direct (

On the website, travelers will find many birding itineraries led by local guides around the world, or, if they don’t find a location or tour they like, they can send an inquiry describing the tour they would like to take somewhere and be put in contact with the appropriate guide. An account (free) is required to book through Birding Direct.

An expansion at the art museum Kunsthaus Zürich (Heimplatz 1, Zürich, Switzerland; phone +41 44 253 84 84, was scheduled to open Oct. 9, 2021. With the expansion, Kunsthaus Zürich will be the largest art museum in Switzerland, with 120,000 square feet of space, which now will include workshops, an event hall and an art garden.

The museum, with works from the 13th century to the present, is open 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Tues. & Fri.-Sun. and 10-8 Wed. & Thurs. The...


The world’s longest pedestrian suspension bridge, called 516 Arouca, opened in Arouca Geopark in northern Portugal on April 30. The 516-meter-long span (1,693 feet) is suspended between two concrete pillars 175 meters (574 feet) above the Paiva River and near the Aguieiras Waterfall. The bridge is not a rigid structure but sags in the middle.

To learn more about the bridge and geopark, visit


In central Sweden, visitors can take a 5-hour moose safari with Amazing Nature Scandinavia (Fagersta, Västmanland, Sweden; phone +46 70 230 68 70,

Tours begin in midday and last until late evening. Tour members will hike through a taiga forest tracking moose (called älg [pronounced like “elg”] in Swedish) before taking a minivan on backroads for moose-spotting. Other animals typically seen include fox, deer, owls and, rarely, wolves and lynxes...