Miami International Airport

Miami Int’l Airport and the Miami Hound Machine

The ‘Miami Hound Machine’ – a team of therapy dogs – is coming to Miami International Airport.

Miami International Airport’s new therapy dog program, charmingly called the Miami Hound Machine, is making its debut today.

The team’s five volunteer K-9 Ambassadors – Abbey, Belle, Dash, Donovan and Pico – and their owners will be on site today with airport officials for a press conference. The pups will then go to work inside Concourse D, visting with passengers and being cute.

Members of the Miami Hound Machine are all certified therapy dogs from the Alliance of Therapy Dogs and will be on duty in the MIA terminals during peak travel periods.

Therapy dogs at airports are a growing trend. So are the types of animals on the therapy dog teams – San Francisco International Airport’s Wag Brigade has a pig (Lulu); Denver International Airport’s CATS program (Canine Airport Therapy Sqaud) has a cat named Xeli, and Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG) often has a small herd of miniature horses stop by.

Have you encountered a member of an animal therapy team at an airport? Thumbs up or down?

Happy 90th Birthday, Miami Int’l Airport

Miami International Airport is celebrating it 90th birthday.

To honor the 90th anniversary of Miami International, the airport opened an art exhibit titled MIA: A Hub for History, featuring airport memorabilia from the last nine decades.

Developed in partnership with the History Miami Museum and the Wolfson Archives,  the exhibit features vintage photographs, posters, uniforms and videos of celebrity MIA arrivals from the airport’s first flight on 15 September 1928 up to the present.

Here are some tweets from the day.

Travel Tidbits: new pre-check airline + fresh art at Miami Int’l Airport

Just in time for summer, we learn that the latest airline to join TSA’s pre-check program is British Airways, bringing to 53 the number of airlines participating in the program.

And Miami International Airport has some new, high-flying art:

The new work is called ‘Ando Volando’ (I’m Flying) and is by Miami-based artist Emilio Adán Martínez. Look for it in the Concourse E satellite. The new kite-like artwork has a companion display, ‘Andan Volando’ (They are flying), located inside Concourse D.

Both installations are constructed with paper, string and Australian pine branches and are meant to resemble kites and boats and suggest the idea of flight.

Fresh airport art to look for on your next trip

Here are some of fresh art exhibits to look for at some airports around the country:

Addoley Dzegede’s “Here and Elsewhere,” a 12 ft.-wide silkscreened work of pigment on cloth, is on view at St. Louis Lambert International Airport in Terminal 2 between gates E10 and E12 through the end of October, 2018.

The airport currently has 29 equally intriguing works of art on view throughout the terminals, courtesy of the Lambert Art and Culture Program.

Christian Scott, North Beach Bandshell, Miami Beach, 2016.

A new exhibition at Miami International Airport on view through October, 2018, celebrates the 30th anniversary of The Rhythm Foundation, the award-winning local non-profit organization that showcases international artists in South Florida. Front Row to the World is an exhibition of 15 concert photographs near Gate D31 by Peruvian-born and Miami Beach-based photographer Luis Olazabal. 

Atomic Haystack by Isamu Noguchi. Courtesy SFO Museum

And at San Francisco International Airport, the SFO Museum has two installations exploring the relationship of Isamu Noguchi’s paper and bamboo Akari lanters with his steel and bronze plate sculpture. Look for these pieces pre-security in the SFO International Terminal Main Hall Departures Lobby through January 6, 2019

 

Travel Tidbits for air travelers

 Brazilian restaurant for Miami International Airport

A popular chain restaurant from Brazil – Viena – has opened on the top (seventh) floor of the pre-security MIA Hotel at Miami International Airport.

The restaurant, which replaces the “Top of the Port” restaurant that was in that spot for many years, has a menu featuring Brazilian and European dishes, including salt cod fritters (Bolinho de Bacalau), Pão de Queijo (Brazilian cheese bread) and the Caipirinha, Brazil’s national cocktail.

In addition to great views, this new restaurant has free Wi-Fi, happy hour, large-screen TVS and electronic charging stations.

Foodie Week at Philadelphia International Airport

 March 12-18 is Foodie Week at Philadelphia International Airport (PHL) with seven restaurants in Concourse B offering special entrees at a discount – $12 – throughout the week

  • Baba Bar: Harissa Chicken Sandwich
  • Boule Café: French Onion Grilled Cheese
  • Cibo Bistro and Wine Bar: Shrimp Calabrese
  • Germantown Biergarten: Cheddar Brat Platter
  • Love Grille: Cheesesteak Hoagie
  • Mezzogiorno: Short Rib and Tomato Pizza
  • Noobar: Spicy Chicken Fried Rice

United Airlines passengers can buy a place in line

United Airlines now allows standard economy passengers to purchase Priority Boarding, allowing them to board in group 2.

The cost is $9 per segment and, according to United, the number of passes sold will be “closely controlled based on flight, date, time of day and day-of-week restrictions.”

For those who already have TSA Precheck and really want to move up in the boarding process, this is a less expensive add-on than Premier Access, which offers priority boarding benefits along with other benefit such as access to premier check-in lines and security lanes. Prices for this add-on start at $15 per segment.

Keep in mind: the new Priority Pass option, like Premier Access, is non-refundable and is not available to you if you’ve purchased a Basic Economy ticket.

SXSW bring extra music to Austin-Bergstrom International Airport  

The SXSW mash-up of conferences and festivals is underway in Austin and the airport in the Live Music Capital of the World is doing its part to make sure everyone gets their fill of music.

In addition to the usual 21 live music events it offers each week, Austin Bergstrom International Airport is adding six extra performances during peak SXSW travel days – March 12, 13 and 19.

Of the extra performances, bands will play at the airport’s Asleep at the Wheel State at Ray Benson’s Roadhouse near Gate 10, while extra solo acts will perform at Annie’s and Waterloo. See the full schedule here.

Post Office plus at Paris Charles de Gaulle and Orly airports

The Parisian postal service – La Poste – has opened enhanced post offices at both Paris-Orly and Paris-Charles de Gaulle airports, In addition to 24-hour postal machines, these post offices will have gift shops, terminals where customers can make photo postcards, rentable work spaces, and other services, including a key drop.

Your face is your boarding pass

Passengers flying with British Airways from Orlando International Airport (MCO) to London Gatwick can now opt to use their face as their boarding pass, thanks to SITA’s biometric boarding technology, which scans a person’s face and matches it up with the data U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has on that passenger in their files.

The process is already being used with certain JetBlue flights at Boston Logan International Airport and British Airways flights at Los Angeles International Airport.

Going biometric isn’t a requirement to board the flights testing the new technology, but last year’s SITA’s passenger IT survey showed that 57% of passengers would use biometrics instead of a boarding pass. SITA reports that real world rates are even higher than that: nearly 100% of passengers are opting to use the biometric boarding during the trials.