These are the best hotels in the U.S. and Europe, according to a new ranking

The U.S. News & World Report released its 13th annual ranking of the best hotels for travelers this week. The rankings, published Tuesday, are based on three factors: the number of awards received from the travel industry, a hotel’s star rating, and guest reviews from the travel website Tripadvisor. More weight was given to recipients of “highly selective” awards, as well as those with more traveler reviews, according to the press release. That makes it harder for new hotels to break into the upper ranks of the annual list. The…

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Singapore drops pre-departure requirements for travelers, further eases mask rules

People gather outside the ArtScience Museum at Marina Bay Sands in Singapore on January 17, 2023. (Photo by Roslan RAHMAN / AFP) (Photo by ROSLAN RAHMAN/AFP via Getty Images) Roslan Rahman | Afp | Getty Images SINGAPORE — Singapore is set to allow non-fully vaccinated travelers to enter the country without a negative pre-departure test from next week, health authorities announced Thursday. The country is set to remove mask-wearing on public transport from Monday, as it seeks to exit the “acute phase” of the pandemic, said the Ministry of Health.…

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Southwest plans to tell Senate it’s confident in its schedule after holiday meltdown

A Southwest Airlines passenger jet lands at Chicago Midway International Airport in Chicago, Illinois, on December 28, 2022. Kamil Krzaczynski | AFP | Getty Images Southwest Airlines plans to apologize before a Senate panel on Thursday over the carrier’s December meltdown that stranded hundreds of thousands of travelers around Christmas. “In hindsight, we did not have enough winter operational resilience,” Chief Operating Officer Andrew Watterson said in written testimony, which was reviewed by CNBC, ahead of Senate Commerce Committee hearing. Southwest canceled more than 16,700 flights between Dec. 21 and…

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Delta raises employee pay 5%, second increase in a year

Nurphoto | Nurphoto | Getty Images Delta Air Lines is raising employee pay 5%, the second time its lifted staff pay in less than a year as a sharp rebound in travel boosts the carrier’s profits and the U.S. labor market remains tight. Delta raised employee pay 4% in May, the first increases since before the pandemic. “Considering the depths of losses we suffered during the pandemic, including a $1 billion first quarter loss just last year, this is truly a remarkable achievement,” CEO Ed Bastian wrote in a staff…

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The next ‘White Lotus’ is expected to be filmed in one of these locations in Asia

When the HBO black comedy “The White Lotus” premiered in the summer of 2021, it took viewers to Hawaii’s sunny Maui. It was a perfectly timed pandemic escape full of intrigue, satire, sex and bloodshed. The second season featured a mostly new cast — save for Jennifer Coolidge and her character’s quietly sinister husband, played by Jon Gries — and a new location, Taormina, on the rugged southern Italian island of Sicily.  Both seasons put the spotlight on so-called “screen tourism” — the growing tendency of travelers to flock to…

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FAA proposes more than $1 million fine on United Airlines over preflight safety checks

United Airlines Boeing wide body 777-200 aircraft as seen during take off and flying phase, passing in front of the air traffic control tower while the plane is departing from Amsterdam Schiphol Airport AMS towards Houston IAH in the United States of America as flight UA21.  Nicolas Economou | Nurphoto | Getty Images The Federal Aviation Administration said Monday that it is proposing a more than $1.1 million penalty against United Airlines for allegedly failing to perform required fire-system safety checks on its Boeing 777s. United didn’t immediately comment. The…

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Southwest faces Senate hearing next week following holiday meltdown

John and Lori Ingoldsby, who drove to Denver after the first leg of their flight on Southwest Airlines was canceled, wait for a flight to finish their trip at Denver International Airport on December 28, 2022 in Denver, Colorado. Michael Ciaglo | Getty Images Southwest Airlines‘ chief operating officer, Andrew Watterson, will face questions from a Senate panel next Thursday about the carrier’s holiday meltdown that stranded hundreds of thousands of travelers. Southwest said the hearing date overlapped with “a previous commitment” for CEO Bob Jordan. Jordan, who has been…

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Hong Kong will give away half a million plane tickets. Here’s who can get them first

Hong Kong’s new global promotional campaign will “kickstart” the city’s reopening to international travelers, the Hong Kong Tourism Board told CNBC’s “Squawk Box Asia” on Friday.  As part of the “Hello Hong Kong” campaign, which was launched on Thursday, 500,000 air tickets will be given away over the next six months, starting in March. The tickets will be given out through three Hong Kong’s carriers — Cathay Pacific, HK Express and Hong Kong Airlines.  The free tickets are part of the HK$2 billion ($255 milion) relief package that the government…

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A travel insider explains how people who hate cruising — can learn to enjoy it

Canadian Tammy Cecco wasn’t a fan of cruising. “The thought of being on a ship with thousands of other people and not being able to get off,” she said, “was something that I wanted to avoid.” That didn’t change when Cecco, a travel magazine publisher, boarded a surprise cruise booked by her husband to renew their vows in front of family and friends. “When I got on … I thought ‘Oh my god, what am I doing here?’” she said. “I’m not the type of person who likes to be…

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Luxury stocks rally from China reopening, but world’s largest luxury market may choose to shop ‘in-house’ 

A salesperson showing the limited edition launched by Emporio Armani to welcome the Year of the Tiger at a duty-free store in Haikou, south China’s Hainan Province, January 15, 2022. Zhou Huimin | Xinhua News Agency | Getty Images Stocks of many luxury fashion houses reliant on Chinese consumers rallied on China’s reopening, but those customers may not necessarily be buying the goods overseas. In the past, trips abroad often included personal luxury purchases for affluent Chinese consumers looking to take advantage of currency and tax benefits. Shares of LVMH…

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