Travel Tidbits: Where to go, what to know, stuff to buy

Early in the week, the inbox is full of tantalizing travel tidbits, news from destinations on our “want” list and fun events in far-off cities that tempt us to jump in the car or get on a plane.

Here’s a sampling:

JetBlue & Spirit: not gonna happen

JetBlue announced on Monday that it reached an agreement with Spirit Airlines to terminate their proposed merger agreement.

That’s a win for travelers, says’s travel expert Katy Nastro. “Even if consumers don’t fly on low-cost carriers like Spirit, they help to keep fares lower by putting pressure on the legacy carriers. Cheap flight lovers across the board can breathe a bit easier knowing competition is here to stay,” she said.

Want to live and work in space? Here’s what it may be like

(Courtesy of the Museum of Flight)

Wondering what it might be like to live, work, or vacation in space?

Seattle’s Museum of Flight is putting together an exhibit that will offer on clues.

Home Beyond Earth opens June 8 and will be and will focus on space stations past, present, and future with more than fifty artifacts, models, space-flown objects, and uniforms.

Kimpton hotels will loan you accessories.

Now that checked bag prices are up, you may be trying to lighten your load and commit to traveling only with a carry-on bag.

We’ll all for that.

And so is Kimpton.

For guests who have left key fashion accessories at home, the hotel brand now has a collection of items available for loan. At participating properties, the Forgot It? We’ve Got It! Anthropologie Accessories Collection includes bags, sunglasses, belts, necklaces, and other items guests may borrow and, if they like them, buy.

Space News You Can Use

Neil Armstrong’s Space Suit. Courtesy Smithsonian National Air & Space Museum

Determined to take a trip to space? We are.

Like us, you may not be able to join SNL’s Pete Davidson and the other civilians getting ready to fly on Blue Origin’s upcoming NS-20 flight on March 23.

But you can send your name into space.

Artemis I will launch later this year and will be the first uncrewed flight test of the Space Launch System rocket and the Orion spacecraft. On this trip, the spacecraft will orbit the moon, but not land on it. However, NASA is willing to take anyone – well, anyone’s name – along for the ride.

On a flash drive.

You can sign up to get your ‘boarding pass’ here.

Here’s what you get when you sign up. Note that the boarding pass includes the mileage that will be earned: a whopping 1, 300, 000 miles.

Space Toys Land at St. Louis Lambert Int’l Airport

Calling all Space Cadets: a new exhibit at St. Louis Lambert International Airport (STL) features vintage space-inspired toys on loan from the Space Museum in Bonne Terre, Missouri. Here’s a sampling of what you’ll see if you stop by STL Terminal 1, plus a fun video from ‘Living St. Louis’ all about the museum and its creator.

All images courtesy STL Airport.

You can go to space too! For free. Or with a donation.

That was pretty darn exciting to see Virgin Galactic take Richard Branson on a trip to space.

Want to take that trip too? An estimated 600 people are ahead of you, having put down $250,000 for tickets over the years Virgin Galactic has been working out the technology. Many others have deposits banked for when more tickets go on sale.

However, those of us short on discretionary space travel cash but big on the idea of a trip to space have another shot at being shot into space.

Virgin Galactic and fundraising company Omaze are running sweepstakes with a grand prize of two seats on a future commercial spaceflight.

You can enter for free. But you get additional entires, plus a chance to help make spaceflight more accessible for everyone, by making a donation of as little as $2 to Space for Humanity.

Here’s what they’re promising:

You and your guest will board a Virgin Galactic spaceship where you’ll take off smoothly, just like an airplane, and watch as the colors outside your window change from blue to indigo to midnight black…

Hovering above Earth, nothing can prepare you for the breathtaking views of our bright planet and surrounding galaxy. Or hearing “you are now free to float about the cabin.” 

Cameras throughout the cabin will record every moment in HD. With 17 circular windows for viewing, every seat is a window seat. And there’s even a mirror to watch yourself floating through space. 

Following a smooth glide descent, you’ll return back to Earth safely, but forever transformed. You’re an astronaut now.

Sound like something you’d like to do someday?

Here’s the link to enter the Virgin Galactic sweepstake for a flight to space. Start thinking about who you’d take along.

(Photos above courtesy Virgin Galactic)

Stuck at The Airport: Mars edition

NASA’s Perseverance Mars rover is set to touch down on the Red Planet on Thursday, February 18th.

Earthlings are pretty darn excited.

At Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), the famous LAX pylons are glowing red in anticipation of the landing.

Many other sites and landmarks around the world, including Cleveland’s historic Terminal Tower, are also glowing red in anticipation of the landing.

Krispy Kreme is celebrating the landing too with a special Mars doughnut. This chocolate cream-filled doughnut is dipped in caramel icing with a red planet swirl and sprinkled with chocolate cookie crumbs. The limited-edition doughnut is available in shops and online for one day only – Thursday, February 18.

And of course, you’ll want to tune in to watch NASA’s live coverage of the Perseverance Rover Landing, starting at 11:15 am PST and 2:15 EST.