JetBlue Founder Delays Launch of His New Airline to 2021 Starting in Southeastern U.S.

Breeze Airways

A Breeze Airways Embraer E195. The airline expects to start flying in 2021. Breeze Airways

Skift Take: At some point, the U.S. airline industry will have a robust recovery. But given the depth of the Covid-19 pandemic, it is unlikely this will happen next year. Breeze Airways may have a rough go at first.

— Brian Sumers

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Meet the Springsteen Fans Who Created Tours That Bring the Star’s Legend to Life

Craig O'Neal  / Wikipedia

Bruce Springsteen performing with drummer Max Weinberg behind him, on the Magic Tour stop at Veterans Memorial Arena, Jacksonville, Florida, August 15, 2008. Celebrity tourism isn’t new, but these two have certainly carved out a unique niche. Craig O’Neal / Wikipedia

Skift Take: While celebrity tourism isn’t new, these two guides have certainly carved out a unique niche in covering Springsteen’s origins at the Jersey Shore. Small and genuine experiences like the tours they offer may outperform generic, mass-market offerings during the travel sector’s recovery.

— Sean O’Neill

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Venice Marks Historic Day as Flood Barrier ‘Stopped the Sea’

Roberto Trombetta  / Flickr.com

A flooded scene in Venice on October 28, 2012. The city built a flood barrier that is stopping high tides from overrunning the city. Roberto Trombetta / Flickr.com

Skift Take: From overtourism to a stark absence of tourists, tourism dynamics have rocked Venice and its citizens. The new flood barrier should at least provide some assurance for awhile that at least the tides won’t sink the city’s prospects.

— Dennis Schaal

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Disney to Lay Off 28,000 U.S. Theme Park Workers and Others as Covid Takes Its Toll

Skift

The world had been watching how Disney looks to successfully bring back large crowds to its theme parks in the coronavirus era. That’s much less certain now. Skift

Skift Take: Analysts had been predicting the Mouse House may not return to last year’s profit levels until 2025. These painful job cuts seemed inevitable.

— Tom Lowry

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My Name is Matcha and This is My Incredible Story!

My Name is Matcha - Bali Cat

Oh my.

I just watched the sunrise from the highest platform of my super fun cat tower. A few minutes ago, I devoured a plate of white ocean fish mixed with salmon flakes! Can you believe it? Salmon flakes!

Seriously, what a wild ride my life has been. And I’m only 4 months old.

My name is Matcha, by the way. I’m this little domestic short haired cat from Bali and boy do I have a story to tell!

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The First Day: Hungry and Scared

It all began when I was born I guess. It’s a bit fuzzy but I was born and suddenly, when I was only 5 days old, someone left me in the jungle in Bali. I could barely move and I was soon covered in grass, without food and trying to survive an intense rainstorm. It was rough. The storm eventually ended but I wasn’t feeling well at all. I was drenched, sooooo hungry and some bugs started crawling all over me.

All I could do was cry because I was really scared.

I don’t know how long I was crying but out of nowhere, I started to hear two voices nearby. I started crying more loudly, hoping they would hear me and maybe help somehow.

And they sure did. It’s still a blur but a very, very nice girl just scooped me up out of the jungle and put me in a little box. Then, this boy appeared with a cloth and put that in the box, which felt so soft on my belly. They started walking with me. I didn’t really care where we were going as I was just happy to be out of that jungle.

I was taken to a house for about an hour and then to some place called a ‘vet’. People were touching me, pulling bugs off of my skin, giving me milk and, honestly, I don’t really know what they were doing but it sure made me feel better so I just went with it.

Later on, we arrived back at that same house. And the same girl and boy started to take care of me. I learned that they were called Georgiana and Derek.

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I'm a Bali Cat

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The First Month: A New Life

Georgiana and Derek didn’t seem too experienced, especially the boy, but somehow they managed to feed me with a bottle and even made a cozy place for me to sleep. They watched over me and made sure I was comfortable all the time. Even in the middle of the night they would wake up if I needed anything at all.

The days passed and I started feeling so much better. I did have something called ringworm but this girl and boy spent a lot of time on their phones figuring out how to get rid of that. They were determined! I even enjoyed the warm baths they gave me with that special shampoo.

At that age, I couldn’t go to the bathroom or eat on my own yet. So Georgiana or Derek would help me out. But sometimes I just didn’t need to pee or I just wasn’t hungry. The funny thing is that they always thought they were doing something wrong if I didn’t pee or eat. I found it quite amusing that they wanted me to pee so bad all the time! I don’t know how much they pee but I just didn’t need to go that much.

So, I was really tiny during that time. I was trying to figure out how to walk steadily and I couldn’t see very well. I did try to play with these cool toys they bought me and I started to stumble around on the grass. Although, I was quite content to simply let these two people rub my head and neck all the time. That was a feeling I had never experienced before and I must say, I loved it!

Georgiana and Derek were always doing something on these devices that had a screen and a keyboard. So the only way I could get them to stop and come back to rubbing my head was to cry a little. They fell for it every single time! It was such a simple trick.

Anyway, the next month was incredible!

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Matcha the Bali Cat

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The Second Month: Like a Dream

One day, we moved to this beautiful house in a different part of Bali. While there, I started to understand how to walk fast and even jump up on the bed and sofa. I could roam all over the place. Of course, Georgiana and Derek were always nearby and they wouldn’t let me out of their sight. I don’t know what they thought could happen…I mean, was some big cat going to attack me? Silly people.

They even started feeding me real food. I think it was tuna and it was so yummy! I also figured out that the box they kept filling up with these weird pieces of soy sticks was the place I was supposed to go to the bathroom on my own. First, soy sticks? Such hipsters! Second, I really don’t understand why they were so excited when I started using this tray. It’s just pee and poop but these two people were jumping up and down as if I had won an Olympic event. Am I supposed to cheer every time they go to the bathroom?

I guess I can understand their concern though when these little worms started to appear near my bum. Apparently, that’s not supposed to happen and before I knew it, I was whisked away to the vet again. I will tell you this…I am not a fan of the ‘vet’. It seems to be a place they take me whenever they don’t want me to be happy. But why don’t they want me to be happy all the time?

I don’t know. I just want to be happy!

Luckily, this visit to the vet was quick. However, and I can’t say for certain, I think my parents started slipping drugs into my food shortly after. I would taste this weird bitter flavor and the texture of the tuna was a little off. I’m not really sure what they were doing but they seemed to be quite secretive about it. At least those worms went away eventually.

Bali Cat Named Matcha

Life continued and I became more and more attached to my family. They became more and more attached to me too. I learned how to do this thing called ‘purr’ and every time I did it, my family stopped whatever they were doing and showered me with attention and love. It’s another cool trick!

And when we all sat on the sofa, enjoying each other’s company, they would order dinner and I would try to eat it off their plate. That was such a fun game they played with me. It looked so real when they tried to shove me away from their food over and over again!

Then we would watch a movie sometimes. Georgiana really liked these scary movies and Derek really liked these dumb comedies. I would have been happy to watch a nice animal movie but they just weren’t interested.

Life was really great and I started to get the idea that I was going to be taken care of forever. Every time they moved to a different house, they took me with them. And every day, it seemed that their routine was built around making sure I had everything I needed to be comfortable and happy. While in that jungle at 5 days old, I never could have imagined that things would turn out this way!

Oh, did I tell you? They even bought me this awesome cat house thing. Wow! Three floors, rooms to sleep in, scratch posts to scratch and even a hammock! A HAMMOCK!!!

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The Third Month: I’m a Princess

I was in that comfy hammock when, one day, Derek lifted me up, put me in my pet carrier and took me back to that damn vet again. I was pretty chill about it because, I don’t know, it seemed harmless enough overall. But this time, holy crap. They jammed some needle in the back of my neck and called it a ‘vaccine’. I was pissed off and quickly discovered that I can hiss and spit and make some serious noise that make these people afraid to do things like that again. Believe me, I used these new found skills because I ended up at the vet two more times for these vaccine injections!

They kept saying it was for some vaccine passport book and that I would need it to leave the country, but why would I leave the country? I’m a Bali cat. It didn’t make any sense to me.

Well, about a week later, they really surprised me good. I did have to sit in a car for about 3 hours but when I was allowed out again, ohhhhhhhhhhh. We were at some house right on the beach in a small town called Amed. It was surreal. I could hear the waves all day and listen to birds. I could run all over the place and jump around and have so much fun. They even let me outside every now and then. I would eat some grass, try to climb trees and just run through the bushes, free as those birds!

In the evenings, I would hang out in my cat house and relax. Right before bedtime, I would always play this crazy game with Derek. He would hide his hand under the sheets and I would try to find it every time he poked his finger out. It was wild! I could play that game for hours and hours. I don’t know what Derek’s problem was because he got tired quickly from this game but no way I was going to let him stop!

By this point, these two people were treating me like I was a princess. They even called me ‘princess’ all the time. But I guess they were just confused because I don’t really have any royalty in my blood. I wasn’t going to tell them that though!

This went on for 1 more incredible month!

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Matcha - Rescued Bali Cat

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A Week at the Vet

Eventually, our time in Amed did come to an end. And every time I try to think about the 3 weeks that followed, I have such a mix of emotions. It was an intense period.

Let me tell you about it.

One day, I didn’t feel very well and all I wanted to do was sleep. A couple of times, I tried to walk around but my legs weren’t stable at all. My family looked very concerned as I just curled up on a chair unable to move much.

Before I knew it, I was back at Sunset Vet, but this time was very different. Derek was there at first but suddenly, he was gone and I was in a cage in a strange room with strange people and a few other animals too. I thought maybe it would last a few minutes but I ended up in this place for 6 long days. During that time, I had to receive injections and an IV and these friendly but unfamiliar vets would check my condition every few hours. They said I had an infection and a muscle sprain, whatever that is.

The good news is that I started to feel better each day. The bad news was that I really, really missed Georgiana and Derek and I had no idea if I would see them again. By the 6th day, I was quite sad. I felt better physically but my life had changed so much, from a beautiful house on the beach with a loving family to this stale room where I wasn’t able to be free at all.

And then…I almost peed myself when I saw Georgiana and Derek walk into the room! I tried to play it real cool, occasionally sniffing their fingers through the cage to make sure it wasn’t a dream. I thought they had abandoned me. I don’t know why they were gone for so long. I suppose it might have something to do with the vets and the fact that my illness was cured but I don’t really know how this stuff works so I’m a little unsure.

Either way, they came back for me! And they took me to another house with palm trees and grass and flowers and plenty of space for me to be myself again. At this point, I knew for certain that I had a family forever!

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The Fourth Month: I’m a Traveler

We spent 2 weeks at this sweet new place. Georgiana and Derek never seemed too thrilled when I would climb high into the thorny tree in the corner of the yard and refuse to come down for an hour, but I didn’t care. I was so happy again and I knew they would get over it every single time and still feed me my favorite food.

That’s why I didn’t get too stressed when suddenly, one morning, I was put back into my travel carrier and placed into a van, next to a cage that had a small dog in it. I was a little concerned that Georgiana and Derek were saying goodbye to me but I tried not to worry too much. A very nice man seemed to be in charge now and I could tell by the way they were talking that whatever was about to happen, it wasn’t going to last long.

I’m not really great with time but I’ll guess it was around two days or so when, just as I had expected, Derek appeared and we were together again. It seemed that we had left Bali though, so that was bizarre. It was my first time off the island and we were now in a place called Jakarta, staying at what Derek kept referring to as a ‘pet-friendly hotel‘. Anyway, we stayed at this hotel for 3 days and pretty much played the entire time!

Derek seemed a little stressed during this period but I tried to use my purring ability to calm him down. He also wanted to put this harness thing on me but I wasn’t happy about that and didn’t let him. I feel a little bad about it but I’m a cat after all and a harness just doesn’t work for me. I did let him put a small collar on as a compromise though.

On the third day in Jakarta, it was time to leave again as Derek started packing up. At this point, I was even excited. Where would we end up next? What a crazy life I was leading! I always seemed to end up somewhere fun and comfortable, as long as it wasn’t the vet.

Bali Cat Story

So let me tell you about the next 40 hours!! 40 HOURS!

I was in this smaller travel case and we ended up at an airport. I was in disbelief, thinking to myself, “Now I’m going to fly? I’m a Bali cat and I’m getting to travel the world!!

But I don’t know. If traveling the world always involves being on an airplane for 12 hours, then a 10 hour layover in another airport and then another 12 hour flight, I don’t need to do it all the time. There were also security checks and so many strangers around. I needed to go to the bathroom in odd, unfamiliar places as well and my system was all messed up because of the time changes. Oh, and I really didn’t enjoy being in that travel case for so many hours.

Traveling is hard. And I definitely couldn’t travel on my own.

Then it ended. I don’t know what happened. Our second flight landed in a place called Miami, which I think is in a country called the USA. We then walked through the airport and then we were in a car. Nobody even asked me for my paperwork or why I wanted to come to this new country. I was shocked!

About 1.5 hours later we were in an apartment and I was free to move around again, just like that.

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The Future

In one room, I had a new cat tower waiting for me, which is bigger than any cat tower I’ve ever seen! I had some great food waiting for me too. The space seemed comfortable to run around and play in and it really didn’t take me long at all to adjust. Derek is here as well of course! I must say, I like it.

Everyone seems to be talking about the ‘shitshow’ and some major problems with a virus in the area and lots of talk about politics but I don’t know, from my perspective everything seems quite calm and I’m having a ton of fun! I just want to play with my favorite piece of rope, eat some more salmon flakes and observe the world from my tower. Is that too much to ask?

And who knows what the future will bring? Will I travel more? Will we move to another house again? As long as I don’t need to visit the vet too often, I’ll take whatever comes my way.

I still can’t believe that only four short months ago I was crying in the Bali jungle, so hungry and scared.

I’ve been living the dream ever since, all because these two people happened to walk by at the right time and save me. Now I’m a world traveler and a princess and I have the best family on the planet!

Salmon flakes!!!!!

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VIDEO: Here’s a super cool video Georgiana made about my entire journey so far!


The post My Name is Matcha and This is My Incredible Story! appeared first on Wandering Earl.

How to Take a Pet Home from Bali

Take a pet home from bali

After rescuing an abandoned kitten in Bali, I made the decision to take her to the US with me when it was time to leave. However, to take a pet home from Bali is not a straightforward decision by any means.

First, pets are not allowed out of Bali. Yes, it is illegal to take a dog or cat off of the island.

Why?

Due to the island’s status as a high-risk rabies location, there is a ban on importing and exporting animals. It’s as simple as that.

When I discovered this, I was surprised to say the least and my heart sunk at the thought of having to leave my kitten behind.

But after I relaxed a bit, I thought to myself: There has to be a way.

Luckily, it turns out there is a way. Additional research, confirmed by some other people who had been in a similar situation, led me to the answer.

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Here’s how to take a pet home from Bali:

Pre-trip Planning

VACCINES
Your cat or dog will need vaccines in order to travel. The specific vaccines will vary according to your final destination and the rules of the airline you will fly with. For my kitten, she needed rhinotracheitis, calicivirus, panleukopenia, chlamydia and rabies, which are all quite standard.

Keep in mind that it can take a couple of months to complete all of the vaccines as there needs to be a few weeks between shots. It’s best to start planning early.

You can expect to pay around 700,000 IDR ($50 USD) in total for all of the vaccines (at least for a kitten). Each time your pet gets a vaccine, it will be logged into a pet vaccine book, with the date, vet name, type of vaccine and the sticker from the actual vaccine bottle.

We used Sunset Vet for our kitten’s vaccines and all of her treatments. They have the best reviews by far, with locations in both Ubud and Kuta. Their prices might be slightly higher than other options but they offer professional, high-quality care. Our kitten had to be hospitalized for 6 days at one point with a muscle sprain and the vets and staff were incredible, sending us photos and video updates several times per day. And they had her back to normal quickly. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend them at all if you want the best vet for your pet in Bali.

MICROCHIP
Your final destination may or may not require your pet to have a microchip. However, a microchip is required to complete the process of taking your pet out of Indonesia. Getting a microchip for a cat is simple. It’s one quick injection and costs approximately 450,000 IDR ($30 USD). You’ll then get a certificate with all of the cat’s details, and your details, that also proves the microchip is ISO compliant, something that is required to ensure the microchip is valid.

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Getting Out of Bali

TRANSPORTATION AND PAPERWORK
As mentioned, it’s technically illegal for a pet to be taken out of Bali. This includes taking a pet from Bali to another island in Indonesia. However, it is perfectly legal for a pet to be taken out of Java, the neighboring island that is home to Indonesia’s capital city, Jakarta.

The main problem is how do you get the pet from Bali to Jakarta if that’s not legal?

You can’t do it yourself.

You can’t fly to Jakarta with your pet as the authorities in Bali won’t let you since it’s illegal. You can’t fly anywhere from Bali with your pet as it’s simply not allowed and you won’t be allowed to check-in.

You can’t take the ferry to Java (and then transportation to Jakarta) because the custom authorities at the ferry terminal in Java will notice and again, it’s illegal to bring the pet out of Bali. This could get you in big trouble.

So how is it possible to take a pet home from Bali?

You’ll need help. And it turns out that there are several companies that offer the help you need.

By ‘help’, here’s what these companies do:

  • Transport your pet from Bali to Jakarta (takes 2-3 days via ferry and van overland)
  • Obtain necessary medical certificates from a vet in Jakarta so there is no trace your pet is from Bali
  • Obtain the required export permit to allow the pet out of Indonesia
  • Accommodate your pet at a pet hotel in Jakarta throughout the process
  • Bring the pet to you, most likely at the airport, and help you check in for your flight with all the documents

Basically, the company is getting your pet entirely new paperwork so that it appears your pet is from Java and not from Bali. Java (the island that Jakarta is on) is not a high-risk area for rabies so it’s perfectly legal to travel with a pet from this island. But the medical paperwork needs to be from this island in order to get the export permit for your pet to be allowed to leave Indonesia.

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Pet home from Bali
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Animal Express Helps You Take Your Pet Home from Bali

The company I used to help me with this process is Animal Express. They had very good reviews, they responded right away to my initial inquiries and their price seemed reasonable for the complete service they provide.

The cost for everything I listed above came to 7,200,000 IDR (about $480 USD).

After talking with many people, this is the normal price to expect. To me, $480 USD is not terrible at all considering that they are helping you do something that’s technically impossible.

Of course, there are other options out there too. I heard about IndoAnimal Travel and while they seemed nice enough, they were slower replying to my questions than Animal Express. A few people also recommended Seventh Heaven Pet Transport but their prices are astronomical (they wanted $3200 USD for the same service) and given the decent communication I had with Animal Express, I couldn’t find any reason to pay such an amount.

*Keep in mind that I wanted to take my kitten with me in the cabin of the plane. Your situation might be a little different if you want/need to put your pet under the plane as excess baggage or ship your pet home as cargo.

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Making a Reservation

You should start the travel process to take your pet home from Bali at least 3 weeks before you plan to fly out of Indonesia or else you risk not having everything in order or the transportation to Jakarta for your pet being already full.

Once you do confirm the service with whatever company you choose, the real process starts. They’ll first make sure you have all the proper vaccinations and documents for your pet. Then, they’ll let you know when your pet will be picked up in Bali (usually about 4 – 6 days before your flight out of Jakarta).

You might have to send your pet’s medical documents by mail to their office in Jakarta ahead of time in order to speed up the process. But this is as simple as spending 5 minutes and 22,000 IDR ($1.50) at an office of one of the local shipping services in Bali, such as JNE Express.

You’ll also need to email them your flight confirmation, and in the case of Animal Express, they will contact the airline for you to make the reservation to take your pet in the cabin with you. Once they’ve confirmed the reservation for your pet with the airline, it’s a good idea to go into your flight booking and choose an ideal seat. In my opinion, this would be a window seat so that you and your pet won’t need to deal with too much foot traffic.

If your pet needs to be checked as luggage under the plane (which is usually the case if your pet and carrying case are over 8kg or the airline you are flying with does not accept pets in the cabin) it’s best to ask about that particular procedure.

Once things are in order, you’ll pay a deposit of 50% to the company. The rest is to be paid the day you fly out of Indonesia.

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My Experience and Timeline

As for my situation, it all went like this in the end:

  • August 6th: Matcha (our kitten) was picked up in the morning at our rental house in Bali. The transport van was clean, the cages were secure and the driver was friendly and helpful. There were two dogs in the van also going to Jakarta.
  • August 7th: I flew to Jakarta and checked into the Ascott Jakarta Hotel (it’s one of the few pet-friendly hotels in the city and they don’t charge extra to bring a cat or dog).
  • August 8th: Matcha arrived in Jakarta in the afternoon and she was delivered to me at my hotel. Alternatively, Animal Express can keep your pet at their pet hotel until your flight.
  • August 11th: A representative from Animal Express met us at the airport check-in area and helped us check in for our flight. They had all of the necessary paperwork and the process was smooth. Animal Express gave me all of the documents to take with me and off we went.

From there, it was a long journey to the US but we made it without any issues at all. And while it was a somewhat complex process to take a pet home from Bali, it’s definitely possible and just requires some patience!

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Take a Pet Home from Bali – Important Notes:

  • Not many airlines flying to/from Asia allow pets in the cabin. Turkish Airlines, Korean Airlines and Asiana were three that I found that do allow it from Jakarta to the US or Europe. There are more airlines that will allow you to check your pet as excess luggage (where it is kept in the cargo hold) but I didn’t want to attempt that with such a long journey and the young age of our kitten.
  • Most airlines require your pet to be at least 10 weeks of age to fly.
  • Definitely start the planning process as early as possible. It can take a couple of months to get all the vaccinations and microchip in order, as well as the transportation confirmed.
  • Pet-friendly hotels in Jakarta are few and far between. Again, I stayed at the Ascott Jakarta Hotel (around $50 per night). There is also the Antoni Hotel (around $15 per night).

Hope this helps and if you have any questions, just let me know!

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