World Travel Watch: G20 Alert in Seoul, Volcano in Indonesia and More
World Travel Watch: Larry Habegger rounds up global travel news
11.03.10 | 3:14 PM ET
World Travel Watch is a weekly report designed to help you make informed judgments about travel. Conditions can change overnight, so always make your own inquiries before you leave home. The U.S. State Department and embassies or consulates are good places to start.
Australia: Hiking Solo in the Outback Requires Planning, Preparation
The death of a German tourist who apparently got lost on a solo hike in the Northern Territory’s Kakadu National Park serves as a reminder always to carry ample water to remain hydrated when hiking in intense heat. He was walking the popular seven-mile Barrk Sandstone Walk without water when he evidently became disoriented and was found dead by a search party the next morning off the trail only two miles from a parking lot. Officials suspected dehydration played a role in his death.
France: Airline Employees to Strike Over Tax on Perks
Strikes against pension reform have been common across France for several weeks now, but an unrelated strike by airline employees is planned for Nov. 5-8. The unions representing airline staff are protesting new legislation that will require airline personnel to pay taxes on discounted plane tickets and other perks provided by companies other than their employer. The unions represent 25 percent of flight attendants at Air France and the strike could disrupt flights on the airline.
Honduras: Crime at Tegucigalpa Basilica Prompts U.S. Embassy Restrictions
The U.S. Embassy in Tegucigalpa now restricts access for U.S. diplomats and their families to Tegucigalpa’s Basilica of Suyapa, authorizing them to visit the popular tourist site only as part of an organized tour that provides armed security for the group. The church is in a high crime area and has been the site of many armed robberies. Built in honor of the patron saint of Honduras and all of Central America, the basilica is Honduras’ most important church.
Indonesia: Mount Merapi Eruptions Disrupt Air Traffic
Malaysian and Singaporian airlines canceled several flights to Yogyakarta and Solo on the island of Java Nov. 2 because of new eruptions from Mount Merapi. Runways were covered with ash and visibility was poor but the airports remained open. The volcano has erupted at least 10 times since its first explosion Oct. 26, and scientists now believe the mountain will continue a series of eruptions possibly for weeks rather than experiencing a cataclysmic blast.
South Korea: G20 Demonstrations to Disrupt Travel in Seoul
In an alert that will expire Nov. 13, the U.S. State Department advised visitors who are not directly involved with the G20 Summit in Seoul Nov. 11-12 to avoid host sites during the Summit, including the Coex Center in Samseong-dong, Gangnam-gu, in south Seoul. Large demonstrations are expected to disrupt travel and have the potential to become violent. U.S. officials also advised visitors to avoid large gatherings or areas where there is a large police presence.