As has become an annual tradition, Lufthansa has announced the details around their 2017 Trachten Crews as they begin to celebrate Oktoberfest. For those of you unfamiliar with the Trachten Crew, it is a select group of flight attendants who celebrate the annual German harvest by wearing traditional Bavarian Drindls and Lederhosen aboard select flights during Oktoberfest.
This year, the team will be on the following long haul flights:
September 15: Munich – Seoul aboard flight LH718
September 25: Munich – New York JFK aboard flight LH410
October 1: Munich – San Francisco aboard LH458.
Members of the Trachten Crew show off their Drindls. Photo Courtesy of Lufthansa
In addition to these long haul flights, passengers will be able to spot other Trachten Crew on European flights to Dresden, Bastia, Amsterdam, Prague, Timisoara, Munster, Warsaw, Belgrade, and Brussels.
Lufthansa employees in Munich’s Terminal 2 will also be in the Oktoberfest spirit as well, and you’ll be able to see their Drindls and Lederhosen on display between now and October 1.
Aside from the new ‘Uniforms’ that will be on display, passengers aboard Lufthansa flights from Munich will be treated to special Oktoberfest menus that celebrate the holiday as well.
Passengers visiting Lufthansa Business Class and First Class Lounges in Munich will also have some special Bavarian surprises waiting for them too. There will even be special amenity kits for Biz and First Class passengers flying from Munich.
Oktoberfest First Class Amenity Kit…..Photo Courtesy of Lufthansa.
Homeland Security this morning removed two more airports from it’s ‘Laptop Ban’ list.
Going forward, Passengers flying on Emirates or Turkish or on other carriers flying from Dubai or Istanbul to the USA will no longer have to check their Laptops. This comes after Homeland Security confirmed that heighten screening of electronics devices is in place at airports in Dubai and Istanbul (Ataturk).
The announcement come three days after restrictions were lifted on Etihad Airways’ hub Abu Dhabi International Airport.
Due to the ban, Emirates had reduced capacity by 20%, so it seems likely that they will now bring that capacity back to their 12 US destinations.
This now brings the list of ‘Banned’ airports to 7. Cairo, Casablanca, Riyadh, Jeddah, Doha, Amman, and Kuwait City remain on the list. Abu Dhabi was removed late last week, allowing Etihad passengers to once again bring their laptops aboard their US bound flights.
It shouldn’t be too long before all 7 are compliant and the ban disappears altogether.
During testimony in Washington DC yesterday, Homeland Security boss John Kelly signaled that he is prepared to expand the current Electronics Ban to include 71 airports around the world.
His premise for this threat stems from these 71 airports not meeting the screening standards that are expected of them by US security officials. He declined to say which 71 airports he was referring to.
This list of 71 would most like include the 10 that are already on the list that prevents passengers from boarding with electronics larger than a typical smartphone.
He did say that any airport on the ‘banned list’ would have the opportunity to have itself removed if it upgraded its screening process to the level required by US Homeland Security.
For now, he did not indicated if, or when this extension would be put in place.
With all this said, it appears that Homeland Security may be softening its tone about the ban. As little as 2 weeks ago, rumors started swirling that the ban would even affect flights departing the USA. But in hearing Kelly’s comments yesterday, it appears that an airport may be exempt from a ban if it screens electronics ‘appropriately’. I suspect that most if not all US airports have the ability to appropriately screen electronics, so I’m hopeful that the ban may not be an ‘all or none’ proposition.