Week in travel: Bali resort bans smartphones from poolside

Embraer reveals a shark-painted plane, while the United Arab Emirates plan to connect with Mumbai by underwater train, and New Orleans airport lets passengers pet baby alligators before flying

A luxurious Balinese hotel has launched a new programme — a complete social media detox.

From 9 am till 5 pm every day, the Ayana Resort and Spa in the tropical paradise of the Island of the Gods has banned all smartphones from one of its pools.

 
 
 
 
 
View this post on Instagram
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Bali Bali Bali🦋

A post shared by @ rita.maksimchuk on

Instead of texting, posting on social media or simply lurking on the internet, the visitors are encouraged to swim, read books, or play a game of Jenga — or simply do nothing at all.

“The ethos of River Pool is to create a place of tranquillity, where our guests can truly relax and be ‘in the moment’,” the resort says.  

“To ensure River Pool remains a haven for guests, we limit the use of mobile phones, cameras, iPads, and any other electronic equipment.”

With the new policy, Instagram pictures such as the one posted above might become scarce.

New Orleans airport lets passengers pet baby alligators

We have seen various emotional support animals recently, including miniature horses, hamsters, and peacocks. But New Orleans airport has decided to up the ante.

In cooperation with the Audubon Nature Institute, Louis Armstrong international airport will provide its passenger with the option to ease their possible travel anxiety with baby alligators.

The airport has established the MSY Gator Selfie booth where the travellers can take a picture with the lizards and even touch them if they’re brave enough.

MSY spokeswoman Erin Burns has ensured that the lizards are not dangerous nor is the practice harmful to them.

“These baby alligators are probably between a year and three years old and can be anywhere from one to three feet long,” he said.

“These animals are used to being handled and they get regular breaks.”

Not only does the approach help passengers to relax a bit, the institute’s educational team also hosts display tables with artefacts and other items describing the life of other animals living alongside alligators in Louisiana’s wetlands.

Embraer paints new Profit Hunter aircraft with shark faces

Brazilian manufacturer Embraer has developed a real predator in the air. Its new E190-E2 aircraft, nicknamed the Profit Hunter, has been revealed with shark face painted over its nose.

 
 
 
 
 
View this post on Instagram
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Ordinary is something we never want to be. #Embraer #E190E2 #ProfitHunter #EmbraerStories Photo by @zuerichspotter

A post shared by Embraer (@embraer) on

The new plane can carry up to 150 passengers and features one significant element — it has no middle seats.

“Preserving passenger personal space is the goal,” Rodrigo Silva e Souza, vice president of marketing for Embraer Commercial Aviation, told CNN Travel.

He added that the seat setting, as well as larger windows and luggage bins, are supposed to give the plane a “wide-body cabin feel” and create an impression “of being on a larger aircraft”.

While the big white is now getting the spotlight on social media, it is not the first time the company has given its planes a wild paint job.

One of its larger aircraft, the E195-E2, has the face of an eagle emblazoned on it, as well as the face of a tiger.

UAE and Mumbai to connect via underwater train

A new 2,000-km underwater canal could connect two major Asian destinations soon.

The 2,000 km underwater train will connect UAE with Mumbai — Shutterstock Week in travel: Bali resort bans smartphones from poolside
The 2,000 km underwater train will connect UAE with Mumbai — Shutterstock

According to Dubai’s paper the Khaleej Times, the UAE-based National Advisor Bureau company has revealed plans to build a high-speed undersea network between Fujairah and Mumbai.

The company suggests a connection similar to the one that lies between London and Paris could help businesses from both cities.

“The project aims to boost bilateral trade. There will be export of oil to India from Fujairah port and import of excess water from Narmada River, north of Mumbai. In addition, other GCC partners can also improve export and import,” reported the Khaleej Times, quoting National Advisor Bureau MD and chief consultant Abdulla Alshehhi.

NAB would use floating trains, called Maglev, for the operation. The magnetic technology behind the system makes the trains ride at a great speed taking advantage of the lack of friction. The trains are common in Japan and also China.

Gatwick breaks passenger record in September

London‘s second largest airport has been experiencing great times. Over the six months before the end of September this year, Gatwick underwent a significant growth in passenger numbers.

London Gatwick is serving 46 million annual passengers — pio3 / Shutterstock Week in travel: Bali resort bans smartphones from poolside
London Gatwick is serving 46 million annual passengers — pio3 / Shutterstock

More than 26.5 million passengers passed through the airport over the time, a 100,000 more than over the same period in 2017. The growth pushes the annual number of passengers to 46 million.

The airport profits from its increase in long-haul flights grew by 21.3 per cent.

“The last six months have seen Gatwick continue to break new ground, while today the airport is serving 46 million annual passengers,” said Stewart Wingate, Gatwick’s CEO.

“Gatwick’s ever-growing global connectivity is set to further increase with China Eastern starting a new service to Shanghai in December and Norwegian to Rio in early 2019.

“In response to passenger demand for Gatwick’s global connectivity, we have published the airport’s draft master plan, setting out our vision for growth to the 2030s.

“We are now seeking feedback from the public, including our local neighbours and our airport partners on this draft master plan, as we seek to fulfil our role for the country, in the most sustainable way.”