When Qualified, PreCheck Speeds Fliers Thru Security

With year-end super-busy holiday air traffic and jammed check-in lines, senior flyers should consider this new go-to-the-head-of-the-line gimmick. Called the TSA PreCheck system, and costing $100, it now permits some pre-security approved airline passengers to get to their aircraft more quickly.

After their status is confirmed, the privileged few are allowed to keep shoes, belt and coats on. They may also carry laptop computers and eligible personal liquids and gels in carry-ons. The only negative could be enduring the dirty looks and curses of the poor peasants who must wait in the long security lines as the special boarders sail past them.

If eligible passengers have kids under 12 with them, all can go through PreCheck. To keep up with the constantly changing status of PreCheck, when booking new flights, always review requirements with your favorite hometown or online travel agency. It may also be expedient to call the airline directly at least 24 hours before your departure to make sure your lofty status is on record.

For more information about PreCheck, go to www.tsa.gov/tsa-precheck

5 Uniquely Different International Hotel Options PDF Print E-mail

Looking for something different, consider spending travel nights in strange and exotic places. Instead the traditional hotel and motel rooms, try snoozing surrounded by ice, high up a tree, in a grounded jet or locked in a former political prison.

Latvia: Karosta Prison is in Liepaja. When built in 1900, the prison and naval port base were in Imperial Russia. Then, from the 1920s it was operated by the Soviet Union until 1990. The imposing structure on the Baltic coast gives guests a taste of imprisonment.

Before going to luxury hotel rooms, they experience dank cells that are sparsely equipped with bunks or floor mattresses. Adding to the prison atmosphere, hotel employees are dressed in vintage Russian military uniforms. Arriving guests are marched to their cells.

California: The Beverly Hills Hotel, Then and Now PDF Print E-mail

Thoughts of my first visit to the 104-year-old Beverly Hills Hotel (9641 Sunset Boulevard, Beverly Hills CA) go back more than six decades. Following two years of active duty after being recalled by the Navy during the Korean War, your travel4seniors.com editor settled in Los Angeles in 1953.

Reporting at a local newspaper then didn't go much beyond paying rent and other basics, but did have benefits. One was covering events at the Beverly Hills Hotel. It had been the site of many elegant events since its opening in 1912 at the corner of Sunset Boulevard and Beverly Drive. Famed movie stars of that era and the present have slept there in its luxurious suites and dined at its elegant eateries.

Los Angeles CA: Enjoy A Great Golf Getaway PDF Print E-mail

Guest senior editor Jason W., Santa Monica CA: The days of my exotic golf travel adventures to Hawaii, Scotland, Australia and other faraway links are over. Now, I prefer to take weekend golf getaways in the Los Angeles area.

In my sunset years, sometimes I enjoy the combination of a luxury hotel, fine dining and a weekend of golf. Here are suggestions for great Los Angeles golf escapes:

Old Photo Guy Into Smartphones & Selfies PDF Print E-mail

Tremendous changes in photography over the past 20 years, advances your travel4seniors.com editor could only imagine back in the days when I lugged around heavy camera equipment. For decades before retirement, as ad manager for a major insurance company, I led a photo crew

We shot stills and videos for ads, news releases, magazine articles, conferences and other field assignments. We used 35mm Nikons and 16mm cameras. They were relatively small and lightweight, but required carrying a bag full of extras, including flash units, extra lenses and many rolls of film.

Bavaria, Germany: Neuschwanstein Castle PDF Print E-mail

Guest Senior Correspondent Phil K., Pittsburgh PA: When conjuring the image of a children’s imaginary castle, something similar to the Neuschwanstein image appears. The 19th century marvel may actually be the inspiration for Disney's Cinderella theme park castles.

We visited the castle and were amazed by both the traditional design and location, perched high atop a mountain. It's a great example of a king, having fantastic vision and resources to fulfill his dream.


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