Free Stuff

Travel Tidbits: mariachi, dirndls & free cheeseburgers

Some fun Friday travel tidbits for you today…

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First – Sunday, September 18 is National Cheeseburger Day and Delta Air Lines will be celebrating with Shake Shack and giving customers flying Delta One on select flights from JFK to LAX a complimentary ShackBurger.

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But wait, there are more cheeseburgers: all customers flying from JFK to LAX on Sept. 18 will receive a voucher for a complimentary ShackBurger at the LA West Hollywood Shake Shack.

Not up for cheeseburgers? How about some mariachi music at the airport?

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Mariachi music welcomed travelers to McCarran International Airport last year at this time as well. Photo: Mark Damon/Las Vegas News Bureau.

McCarran International Airport is kicking off the busy Mexican Independence Day holiday weekend by welcoming passengers to Las Vegas with a special performance in the Terminal 3 international arrivals lobby on Friday morning by Mariachi Oro Del Rancho – a 19-member student band from Rancho High School.

Mexico is an important market for McCarran: from Thursday through Sunday, 41 commercial flights fly directly from Mexico to McCarran International Airport, including ten charter flights added specifically for this holiday weekend.

 

And Lufthansa is celebrating Oktoberfest season..

Trachten 2016, Trachtencrew

Keep an eye out for Lufthansa crew members dressed in special anniversary in traditional attire at many  passenger service stations in Munich and on some flights, including Munich to Shanghai September 20, Munich to Denver October 2 and Munich to Boston October 3 and, at the end of the Munich Oktoberfest, to European destinations  Belgrade, Birmingham, Cluj, Nice, Olbia and Sylt.

This is a Lufthansa tradition and over the past ten years the carrier has had different fashion houses design the yellow, blue and white dirndls.

This year’s costume is once again designed and tailored by the Angermaier fashion house, based in Munich.

 

(Dirndl descriptions: Outside and in the center: current anniversary costume. Other costumes from left: Traditional blue print dirndl from 2006, costume from 2009, dirndl from 2012 and the traditional dirndl from the 50s (2015 costume). Courtesy: Lufthansa/Stefan König)

Free museums this weekend

When I’m not in an airport, I’m checking out museums – especially on the first weekend of each month when the Museums on Us program gives Bank of America cardholders free access to more than 150 museums and cultural institutions around the country.

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Ivory telescope from the Alder Plantarium

If I could zip around the country, I’d use my bank card to gain free access this weekend to the Alder Planetarium in Chicago (general admission: $12), to see the telescope collection and the temporary exhibition that explores the post-Pluto question: What is a Planet?.

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I’d also head to American Visionary Art Museum in Baltimore to see the Big Hope Show – which is closing soon – and to Morristown, New Jersey to see the Toothpick World exhibition and the fortune -tellers, gambling machines and other early coin-operated entertainment machines at the Morris Museum.

1_Intro_assorted machines_courtesy Morris Museum

Freebies to gather while traveling

National Ice Cream Day is over, and so is National Milk Chocolate Day.

But that doesn’t mean you can’t cash in some great freebies while you travel.

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Coming right up on Thursday, August 4, 2016 is National Chocolate Chip Cookie Day (who knew, right?) and to celebrate DoubleTree by Hilton will be giving a chocolate chip and walnut cookie to anyone who walks into one of the brands more than 460 hotels worldwide.

Usually those cookies are only given to guests at check-in.

On National Chocolate Chip Cookie Day, DoubleTree by Hilton will also be handing out free cookies with Amtrak at New York’s Penn Station and at Chicago’s Union Station.

At the train stations, cookies will be handed out in pairs: you can eat one and give one to a friend, coworker or stranger. Or just keep both cookies to yourself.

Tip: In each station, the first 25 people who mention “Nice Travels” to a DoubleTree team member will receive a full tin of cookies from the brand’s new Traveler Tin Collection, which is a set of seven commemorative cookie tins celebrating California, Chicago, Florida, New York, Texas, The Carolinas, Canada and other destinations around the world.

(You can buy the tins or try to win one – or some other prize – in an Instagram contest.)

Don’t care for chocolate chip cookies? Don’t worry – there’s another freebie-packed “holiday” for you just up the alley:

Saturday, August 13th is National Bowling Day and Bowlmor AMF centers are around the country will be offering free bowling from 10am-12pm at any of the 300 bowling centers operated by Bowlmor AMF, including AMF, Brunswick Zone, Brunswick Zone XL, Brunswick’s, Bowlmor and Bowlero locations.

 

 

 

 

Free meals for military at airports

Armed Forces

Between Memorial Day and Independence Day 2016, active and retired military personnel traveling through many of the nation’s airports may show a military ID when or ordering or at check-out and receive a free meal (an entree, salad, or appetizer and a non-alcoholic beverage), courtesy of the Treat of Troops program of airport retail and restaurant operator Paradies Lagardère.

Here’s the list of airport restaurants participating in this program:

Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport – Sweet Auburn Market

Asheville Regional Airport – Blue Ridge Tavern

Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport – Say Si Bon!, Washington Pour Bar, U Street Pub, Wow Bao and Magic Pan

Denver International Airport – Say Si Bon!, Magic Pan, Big Bowl and The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf

Long Beach Airport – Long Beach Marché, The Boathouse and 4th Street Vine

Northwest Arkansas Regional Airport – Jammin’ Java, Coastal Roast, Say Si Bon!, Smokewood American Grill and Core Brewing Co.

International Women’s Day at MIA Airport

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Today, in honor of International Women’s Day (March 8), Miami International Airport is joining up with the Association of Floral Importers of Florida (AFIF) to hand out 25,000 complimentary flower bouquets to passengers.

Starting at 10 a.m., a variety of airport personnel, along with volunteers from the AFIF, American Airlines, the Miami-Dade Police Department and the Transportation Security Administration will be greeting passengers at airport entrances with roses, daisies, carnations and spray chrysanthemums, and a postcard with information about the meaning of the day and a reminder that MIA is the gateway for more than 90 percent of all the flower imports to the United States.

Definitely the Airport Amenity of the day!