WestJet’s Disney planes retiring. But stand by for a new Hello Kitty livery from Eva Air

West Jet will retire the Walt Disney “Frozen” and “Magic Plane” liveries

This week we’ve been poking around for cool airplane liveries and learned from Calgary-based WestJet that the carrier is getting ready to retire the Walt Disney World Resort livery on the popular “Frozen”-themed plane and on the “Magic Plane” that features Sorcerer Mickey on the tail.

According to a WestJet spokesperon, “later this year,” the airline will be repainting these planes to match the existing WestJet fleet.

Good news for Hello Kitty livery fans

If you’re a Hello Kitty fan, there’s some good news.

Tawain-based Eva Air, which currently operates four Hello Kitty-themed jets – Travel Fun, Celebration Flight, Joyful Dream and Shining Star – says it is “working hard to create designs for our next generation Hello Kitty Jets” and will share news about those new special liveries when they’re ready to go.

In the meantime, the carrier says it’s using the four current Hello Kitty jets on flights to Clark (in the Philippines), Bali and Sapporo but not on specific schedules. 

“We are using them just as we operate other aircraft in our fleet. A passenger on one of these routes could end up on an EVA Hello Kitty Jet or on another aircraft.”


TSA takes on Star Wars, pups and checkpoint firearms.

Today’s tidbits come from some of the social media notices shared by the folks at Transportation Security Administration (TSA).

First: On its @askTSA site, TSA is answering questions from Star Wars fans heading to a Disney park to visit the Galaxy’s Edge attraction.

People are curious about how TSA will deal wtih some of the out-of-this-world souvenirs, like “thermal detonator” coke bottle souvenirs.

TSA says don’t try putting these ‘thermal detonator’ soda bottle souvenirs in carry-on luggage. Athough they’re filled with soda, they look like something else.

And that’s why they say those items should be put in checked bags.

TSA also shared the winner of its National Dog Day Cutest K9 contest. Congrats to Alfie!

And, as it does most every week, TSA reported the number of firearms found in carry-on bags at airport checkpoints in the previous week.

Between August 19 and 25, TSA officers found 69 firearms in carry-on bags.

That tally is actually on the low end.

But, of the 69 firearms discovered in carry-on bags last week, 59 were loaded and 23 had a round chambered.

Happy Birthday, Finnair

Finnair comic

Cover photo of the limited edition, Finnair-themed Donald Duck comic book distributed November 1, 2013 Finnair long-haul flights.

Finnair turned 90 on November 1 and kicked off a year of celebrations by handing out copies of this Finnair-themed Donald Duck comic book to passengers. The airline also had Finnish graphic designer Erik Bruun design a special anniversary poster.


Looking forward to more stylish and fun anniversary items from Finnair.

Snow globes on airplanes? TSA says no…

Each week on msnbc.com’s Overhead Bin blog I get to answer a reader’s question. This week’s topic: snow globes on airplanes.

During a recent trip to Disneyland, Camille Kohler’s 5-year-old daughter searched for the one souvenir she would buy and bring home with her to Anchorage, Alaska. After three days of consideration, she decided on a small snow globe from the popular It’s a Small World ride.

For the flight home, Kohler put the snow globe in her carry-on bag. But the water-filled souvenir never made it past the security checkpoint at Los Angeles International Airport.

“To their credit, the TSA agents were trying to keep the confiscation on the down-low so my daughter wouldn’t see they were taking the snow globe,” said Kohler. “They even looked for a way to empty it. But at that point in the day, I didn’t even want to bring it to my girl’s attention, causing a potential melt-down at the security gates.”

Now Kohler wants to know: “Does the TSA have a rule specifically prohibiting snow globes?”

The answer is yes.

“Snow globes of any size are not permitted in carry-on baggage because there is no way for our officers to accurately determine the volume of liquid,” said Transportation Security Administration spokesperson Greg Soule.

If you do want to travel with a souvenir snow globe that, like Kohler’s daughter, you have carefully picked out, the TSA recommends that you put it in your checked luggage or ship it home. Another option is to shop for a souvenir snow globe at a post-security shop in the airport.

Wondering if your vacation souvenir will make it through the security checkpoint? The TSA has a tool on its website to help travelers like Kohler figure out what will and won’t fly. Overhead Bin plugged in “snow globes” and was sent to a “Check only” page that discusses liquids but does not specifically mention snow globes. A holiday-related section of the TSA website, however, does specifically state that snow globes are not permitted in carry-on bags.

And don’t worry too much about that lost It’s a Small World souvenir. Like all Disney movies, this tale has a storybook ending: “I’m happy to report that I was able to find a replacement snow globe on the Disney web site,” said Kohler.