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Insight Newsletter - July 2014

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Keeping Up With Changes in Frequent Flyer Programs


If your head is spinning, trying to keep up with all the changes in the airlines’ frequent-flyer programs recently, we don’t blame you. What with mergers and fare-based rather than distance-based miles accrual it’s difficult to keep track of what’s happening with your airline’s program.

 
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McCarran International Airport Las Vegas (LAS)
 
Singapore AirportLocated five miles from downtown Vegas and a mere two miles from “The Strip”, McCarran airport is a focus airport for both Allegiant and Southwest airlines, serving as the largest operation base for each of these airlines. The airport sees more than 40,000,000 passengers pass through it every year.

 

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Airports Speed-Up Security Lines by Tracking Your Smartphone


The Cincinnati airport is about to become the first airport in the U.S. to monitor your Wi-Fi devices in an effort to minimize congestion and wait times.

The use of the BlipTrack system - developed by Lockheed Martin – will enable them to identify congested areas and display wait times for security checkpoints. It’s believed that when travelers have this information they are calmer and find the queuing experience less frustrating.

Although BlipTrack detects the presence of a Wi-Fi enabled device through its embedded Wi-Fi or Bluetooth signals, it doesn’t gather personal data such as the owner’s identification. While some European airports using the system notify travelers that it is in use, Cincinnati doesn’t plan to notify travelers, saying that the system poses no privacy issues.

Approximately half of airport passengers carry Wi-Fi devices such as a smartphone or laptop and as this number grows, the data supplied will become even more reliable. BlipTrack will be able to analyze passengers’ movements more closely and will also collect data on how people use the airport’s retail and restaurant facilities.

BlipTrack is already used in 20 airports around the world – Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Dubai and Toronto, to name just a few - and although Cincinnati is the first in the U.S., it is expected that there will eventually be 50 U.S. airports using it to monitor your movements. The program will debut in July.

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Mophie Battery Case

Entrain

As anyone who owns a smartphone knows, keeping it charged can be a challenge, particularly when traveling. Mophie has developed a series of battery cases for your mobile device.

These ultra-thin cases are durable enough to protect your phone but sleek enough to be carried in your pocket or handbag. A built-in, rechargeable battery extends the normal life of your phone battery and a built-in standby switch allows you to choose when to use the juice pack and when to save power for when you really need it. Purchase of one of these cases includes a micro-USB charging cord, which allows you to charge your phone and the pack simultaneously.

Case designs run from slim and stylish to rugged military-grade, impact resistant. Cases are available for iPhone 4, 4S, 5 & 5S as well as Samsung and HTC phones. Prices range from $79.95 to $149.95.

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