Retired Austin Travelers

Who We Are...

As our name implies, we are (mostly) retired folks (singles and couples) who live in and around the Austin area and who all  share a love for the Adventures of Travel.
    All you need is the desire to travel, or hear from other travelers. That's it!     Join us at our next event! 

News & Information

Trip Reports

Carolyn Barkley's Blog!

Carolyn Barkley, one of our most seasoned travelers, writes a very interesting Travel Blog about her extensive travels, complete with photos.     Check it out!

 Ann Cabot Discovers Réunion

Ann Cabot
discovered a picturesque, though remote island named Réunion.   Governed by France, the island lies East of Madagascar, off the East coast of Southern Africa.  
   Link to view Réunion photos

our Next Travel Chat Event... 

The next Travel Chat is scheduled for 2 PM on December 16, 2021. December is Remembrance Month. We'll circle our chairs at the meeting, include the Zoom folks, and remember some of the best presentations over the past years of RATs. Kate and I agreed to postpone her presentation on The Dolomites and enjoy a more relaxing meeting. Hope all you 'old timers' will join us and share.

Contact Ann at to be added to the notification email list.

At this time it is planned for the meeting to be in person as well as on Zoom.
In Person: Vaccinated members can meet in person at the WellMed Center at 706 W Ben White Blvd. in south Austin. The driveway into the parking lot is on the westbound feeder road of Ben White (290) just west of South First Street.  We meet in the conference room of the Senior Community Center, room 125A.
Zoom: Please email Ann ( in advance if you plan to use the Zoom option and do not already have the login link.

Hot Travel News

Better airline seat maps than SeatGuru. (11/27)

Boris: UK will require PCR, quarantine for pax. (11/27)

AA to continue flying w/ fewer FA's. (11/27)

Black Friday $100 off United international flights. (11/27)

New secret password at Kimpton hotels. (11/27)

Air travel to India resumes Dec. 15. (11/27)

EU may limit vax passports to 9 months. (11/27)

~61 arriving South Africa pax test + at AMSterdam. (11/27)

Black Friday China vacation w/ air for $299. (11/26)

South Africa travel ban due to new covid strain. (11/26)

Semi-biz-class Chicago to LHR from $782 r/t. (11/25)

Credit card travel portals compared. (11/25)

Finnair DFW-HELsinki is now bookable. (11/25)

Discounts on Bose n/c BT headphones. (11/25)

Guide to United cheap Basic Economy. (11/25)

In-flight credit card pitches. (11/25)

US prioritizes prosecution of unruly airline pax. (11/25)

No AA routes to Africa soon. (11/25)

New iPhone app for Atlas Obscura. (11/25)

Use DL SkyMiles after owner dies? (11/24)

Cruise line alcohol policies. (11/24)

Pay $15 to skip TSA line at La Guardia. (11/24)

Car rental company points expiration policies. (11/24)

NZ abandons "Zero Covid", will welcome tourists. (11/24)

Flight Attendant Bingo. (11/24)

Pax disregard CDC's "Don't go to Europe." (11/24)

Lady kicked out of hotel after bad-ish review. (11/23)

Senior Nomads scammed by Travelgenio? (11/23)

Fodor's list of great 2022 destinations. (11/23)

Hilton upgrades primer. (11/23)

Are travelers checks still avail? still valid? (11/23)

Save $$ by repricing your airline reservations. (11/23)

Kyte brings rental car to you. (11/23)

Travel gift ideas for kids. (11/23)

ABIA says arrive 3 hr in advance 4 Tksgiving. (11/22)

Is delta the final covid variant? (11/22)

Delta vs. Spirit comparison. Big Front Seat. (11/22)

Where vax'd Americans can travel now (chart) (11/22)

Marriott forced to display resort fees. But... (11/22, 24)

Australia opening more, but not for US yet. (11/22)

Museum of Ice Cream in NYC, SIN & Austin. (11/21)

How to meet minimum spend on new CCs. (11/21)

Awesome art on display at ABIA. (11/21)

How to spot American tourists. (11/21)

How to keep food/meds cold during flights. (11/21)

More travel in 2022 than pre-pandemic. (11/21)

Nat Geographic 'Best Destinations' list (11/21)

Hawaii closed to cruise ships. (11/21)

Canceled flights lead to marriage. (11/21)

New York's vax passport helps travelers. (11/21)

Munich Christmas Market canceled -- covid. (11/21)

Rick Steves report on recent European travel. (11/20)

Will airline mask mandate expire Jan 18? (11/20)

"...and so disappointed I wasn't there..." (11/20)

Airbnb benefiting from covid. (11/20)

How A-List Celebs board airliners. (11/20)

Priority Pass info: Airport spas, restaurants. (11/20)

Free info from International Travel News. (11/19)

US State Dept safety ratings for nations. More. (11/19)

CDC covid-safety ratings for foreign nations. (11/19)

Capital 1 refunds to you if ticket price increases. (11/19)

India re-opens for visits, free visas. (11/19)

Google Flights adds flexible alerts. (11/19)

Video of vax confrontation on plane is fake. (11/19)

Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade info. (11/19)

New York City vax rules. (11/19)

Cyber Weekend sale on TAP to Europe. (11/19)

Attacks possible against airliners in Ethiopia. (11/19)

Chase Bank creating network of airport lounges. (11/19)

Free night awards: Hilton, IHG. (11/19)

Active shooter @ ur hotel means 75K pts 2 you. (11/18)

United again serves pre-flight wine in 1st. (11/17)

60+ giant A380s to fly this yr. Air travel is back! (11/17)

American plans new lounge at ABIA. (11/17)

United Airlines cash+miles program a ripoff. (11/16)

Unvax'd United employees are on leave w/o pay. (11/16)

Demise of hotel airport shuttles. (11/16)

8 relatively unknown destinations in Italy. (11/14)

Combative AUS pax got biggest FAA fine. (11/14)

Funny name-change idea for Salt Lake City airport. (11/14)

More European nations consider lockdowns. (11/13)

BIG PROBLEM! - Vaccination expiration (11/12)

$50 off next AA flight if you pay w/ MC. (11/12)

Violent airline pax fined more than $200,000 by FAA. l (11/12)

Funny stories about 'entitled' pax. 11/11)

European destinations w/ winter sun. (11/11)

Airliners cross Atlantic in formation, save 5% fuel. (11/11)

Superjumbo airliners (A380) returning to service. (11/11)

How to travel w/ pets. (11/10)

Zero covid cases from casual contact outdoors. (11/10)

$400 bonus to switch banks for your biz checking. (11/10)

150+ Hertz customers sue - wrongly arrested, jailed. (11/10)

Going to HEL? Finnair will fly n/s Helsinki-DFW. (11/10)

What TSA staff see when you are in the body scanner. (11/10)

Bad News: American Airlines pilots reject holiday pay offer. (11/10)

'Invisible man' tries to sneak into airport lounge. (11/9)

Free child car seats by Hertz, Dollar, Thrifty for AAA. (11/9)

Backstory of synchronized take-offs from LHR. (11/9)

Good $15 Sonicare toothbrush for travel. (11/9)

50 cool pix of Iceland. (11/9)

List of all US National Parks w/ links. (11/9)

Wear all ur clothes to avoid bag fees? Not a good idea. (11/8)

Frequent Traveler University next Sat. Zoom, $25. (11/8)

Emotional flights as US travel ban ends, families reunite.

AA pays up to 3x to flight attendants on holidays. (11/8)

Value chart for frequent flyer miles & hotel points. (11/8)

Marriott sells best rooms thru Airbnb, not (11/8)

AA ends curbside check-in or charges for it. (11/8)

US cities to Europe $450 r/t on AA, DL, UA until May. (11/8)

Out of 600,000 cruise pax, 1359 got covid. (11/7)

Giant A380s flying again. World's largest airliners. (11/6)

Plan for 8-hr airport delays on Nov. 8?! (11/6)

Hotel shampoo etc. - Single-use v. big bottles. (11/6)

Good deals on Bose QC 35 II noise-cancel headphones. (11/6)

UK police arrest pax for anti-Semitic chant on plane. (11/6)

Fake illness on airliner gets Moroccans into Spain. (11/6, 8)

US-Mexican border opens tmrow w/o covid restrictions. (11/6)

SWA Companion Pass FAQ. (11/5)

Expedia,, eBookers getting worse. (11/5)

If you get a speeding ticket in a rental car. (11/5)

Cancun Hyatt gunbattle. 1 2. (11/5)

Free mag subs - Conde Nast Trav, Fortune, Time, etc. (11/5)

Services hep navigate European travel rules (paywalled). (11/5)

Airbnb tips. (11/4)

Alaska Airlines switches to recyclable water boxes. (11/4)

United says 'you can trust us' to get you there. (11/4)

Where vax'd Americans can visit now & soon. (11/3)

Protect holiday flights from airline disruptions. (11/3)

100K points bonus on SWA pers CCs w/ $14K spend. (11/3)

Puerto Rico more vax'd than any state. (11/3)

Pax punches flight attendant - his side of the story. (11/2)

Argentina open to vax'd + PCR + more. No mass transit, etc. (11/2)

Breakthrough cases analysis. Age matters. (11/2)

New gotcha for rental cars in Calif. (11/2)

Autoslash, Costco have best deals on rental cars. (11/2)

How to find cheapest airfare to anywhere. (11/2)

Strategy for award hotel stays. (11/1)

McRib again available starting today. Reviewed. Info. (11/1)

Dubai DXB regains title as World's Busiest Internat Airport. (11/1)

Delta using facial recognition for TSA security lines. (11/1)

Reasons airlines can deny lost-luggage claims. (11/1)

National no-fly list for unruly pax - good or bad? (11/1)

New shopping portal bonuses. (11/1)

Rick Steves on 'The Return to Travel'. (10/31)

Trinidad and Tobago travel info, need vax + PCR. (10/31)

AA quadruples AUS service. (10/31)

Flight attendant salaries and educational levels. (10/31)

New flexible gift giving from Amazon. EZ exchanges. (10/31)

More than 1000 AA flights cancelled this wkend. (10/31)

EU digital vax passport works in UK, and v/v. (10/30)

Barbados nixes quarantine for vax'd visitors. (10/30)

Delta pax face big delays at LAX ("world's worst airport") (10/30)

Uber in Brazil recommended. (10/30)

Unruly pax faces 21 yr in Fed penitentiary. (10/30)

TripIt keeps track of flight changes for you. (10/30)

Not free, AA wants to sell more in-flight wifi. (10/30)

Un properly masked couple gripe abt an unmasked pax. (10/29)

10 scenic US Nat Park drives. (10/28)

Website shows disasters all over the world in near-real time (10/28)

Greyhound resumes US-CAN bus srvc Nov. 8. (10/28)

United resumes liquor sales Nov. 15. App required. (10/28)

Pixel 6 phone costs $600, has features for travelers. (10/28)

TSA to pay $103M to patent holder for checkpoint tray idea. (10/28)

Almost 5000 unruly airline pax incidents this yr. (10/28)

Easy-peasy way to check flight status. iPhone only. (10/27)

Chill out dude! Justice for 8 Chinese airline execs. (10/27)

AA planning to fly to Mumbai? (10/27)

Hertz rental fleet to be 20% Teslas by late 2022. Learn.  (10/26)

SWA offers carbon offset plan. (10/26)

Rick Steves 'Monday Night Travels' series continues. (10/25)

Covid test rules change for visitors to UK. (10/25)

Turks & Caicos open to vax'd Americans. (10/25)

Complicated rules for travel to Israel. (10/25)

Google Flights now shows kg CO2 for routes. (10/24)

Cheap at-home covid test kits. Enter your ZIP here. (10/24)

What to do if you lose your CDC card. (10/24)

No longer "seniors", now we are "Varsity Generation"? (9/24)

Exciting new Capital One lounge at DFW. (10/24)

Hawaii wants us (vax'd) back. (10/24)

Fixing United biz internat award travel itins. (10/24)

SWA Companion Pass helps for internat flights. (9/24)

Exit row rules. (10/24)

First international vacay in 2 years. "Amazing and Strange" (10/24)

Capital One new CC for those with no/bad credit. (10/24)

Thai visas available online. (10/24)

Southwest Airlines Companion Pass info. Great value! (10/23)

Thailand opens to vax'd pax Nov. 1. (10/23)

"Old Man" airport behaviors. (10/23)

Airline sells mystery flights from vending machines. (10/23)

Ryanair bans pax who got CC pandemic refunds. (10/23)


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  Retired Austin Travelers
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