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Zoom Airlines Suspends Operations

Zoom Airlines, a Canada-based low-cost carrier, abruptly shut down and began bankruptcy proceedings yesterday, leaving passengers from Vancouver to London stranded.

According to an article on, Zoom said the rising costs of fuel and a weakened economy over the past year forced it to ground its planes.

On their website, Hugh and John Boyle, the founders of Zoom, direct their travelers to other airlines for re-accommodation and made this statement: “We deeply regret the fact that we have been forced to suspend all Zoom operations. It is a tragic day for our passengers and more than 600 staff.”

Maybe You Didn’t Have to Take a Staycation After All

It was the buzzword of the travel industry this summer. You may call it a “staycation” but I call it a “nocation.” And if you think about the premise behind what a staycation really is — staying home and doing nothing — you’ll realize that it really just means not going on vacation. From here on out I will no longer call this phenomenon as a staycation — I prefer to call it what it is. A nocation!

An article in today’s New York Times details the staycation of one man whose cancelled trip to Jamaica forced him into a nocation. He stayed in bed, mostly, and watched Judge Judy. His back started to hurt from being in bed so much. People — this is insanity. Nocations will eventually lead to bedsores if we’re not careful!

The irony of all this nocation talk is that maybe you didn’t need to take one after all. Maybe you could have afforded that summer trip. I was convinced that traveling was not as expensive as the media hype would have you believe and it turns out I was right. Analyzing flight and hotel data from July, I was able to easily identify 14 cities where the cost increase of a trip was no more than $50 more expensive than it was last year. Some cities were even less expensive in July 2008 than July 2007. Here are the complete findings.

I don’t want to say that $50 isn’t a lot of money, because when it seems like the cost of everything is up — from gas to groceries — even a few dollars can seem like a lot. To offset any additional costs, here are a few tips:

Hair-Raising Travel: Your Woes From the Road

Here at The Window Seat, we often get emails from readers chronicling hair-raising tales from their travels. Some of the stories are so horrific that I think it’s time to share them and see what everybody thinks.

A Shade Too Much
Beth A. writes, “Who controls the window shade on a flight? Is it the person who sits by the window? Is it a mutual agreement? I ask because on a recent flight, the guy in the aisle seat (there was no one in the middle) kept asking me to put it down. I like it up, but I agreed to be nice, but then when he was asleep I put it back up so I could look out the window, which is the whole reason I wanted the window seat in the first place. He was really rude about it when he woke up.”