Gamechangers: Airlines & Airports - Full-Time Travel

Gamechangers: Airlines & Airports

Gamechangers: Airlines & Airports

If you’ve always thought of the airport and flight experiences as just a means to an end, something to endure before you get to enjoy your vacation, these award-winners might just change your mind. From creating healthier and more inclusive environments to offering industry-first innovations and travel experience improvements, these airlines and airports are upgrading the journey itself.

San Francisco International Airport

By Artur Tumasjan

Over the past several years, the team at San Francisco International Airport have been working towards ambitious aims to make terminals healthier for travelers and more gentle on the planet. Actions taken to reduce carbon emissions, conserve water and create healthy buildings include furnishing the space with non-toxic furniture, designing radiant ceilings for heating and cooling, installing lactation stations, and landscaping outdoor space. Thanks to these efforts, SFO’s Harvey Milk Terminal 1 became the first airport in the world to earn a Fitwel certification – a ratings system with strict guidelines on how to build, construct and operate healthier buildings. With more wellbeing-forward upgrades in the SFO pipeline, it won’t be long until other major airports begin to consider the healthfulness of their terminals.

Alice, the world’s first all-electric commuter aircraft

Alice | Courtesy of Eviation

A newly launched electric-powered aircraft called Alice is reimagining the executive commute. Created by Israeli company Eviation, Alice aspires to be like a "high-speed train without the rail," shuttling 20-40 passengers 440 nautical miles within about an hour (after which it will need to recharge). Although Alice probably won’t become a widely adopted solution to commuting and business travel in the near future, it’s a big leap in the direction of sustainability for the aviation industry, which is still one of the fastest-growing sources of the greenhouse gas emissions driving global climate change.


Pittsburgh International Airport

By Yousef Alfuhigi

Airports are hectic spaces to navigate for most travelers, and for those with a sensory disability they can be even more confusing. At Pittsburgh International Airport, a wayfinding app called NavCog helps visually impaired and blind travelers get where they need to go using 600 bluetooth beacons to guide them instead of an escort. Building on its reputation as a welcoming and considerate space for all travelers, Pittsburgh International Airport has also introduced a calming suite called Presley’s Place where those coping with sensory processing sensitivity, such as autism, can enter a quiet space and decompress before beginning their journey.


Hawaiian Airlines

Hawaiian Airlines | (Photo by Brittany Murray/MediaNews Group/Long Beach Press-Telegram via Getty Images)

Earlier this year, Hawaiian Airlines announced that it will be the first airline to install the SpaceX Starlink on its flights, giving passengers free, lighting-speed WiFi in the air. This isn’t the only thing we love about Hawaiian. Impeccable service and a rare commitment to serving high-quality, cooked meals to all passengers (created by award-winning chefs, no less), puts the airline a cut above the competition.

"This sculpture is called "Transmission" by artist Daniel Popper. Its a reminder that we are all rooted in love, unity and the divine. She stands a towering 28 feet tall and is located on Mojave Moon Ranch in Joshua Tree. The land is private property, so you can see it from the viewing platform off of Sunfair Road. And take it from me, it's best viewed at sunset."

Reel: @johnofah

There's more to Greece than the white and blue buildings and the surrounding Mediterranean Sea. If you're planning a visit, check out these places below!

📍Kokkinopilos. Preveza
📍Verliga Dragon lake, Thessaly
📍Ithaca island, lonian Sea
📍Aoos springs lake, Epirus
📍Lake Prespes, Macedonia
📍Balda di Stringa waterfalls, Epirus
📍Meteora, Thessaly
📍Pelion, Thessaly
📍Lake Zorika, Epirus
📍Mt Lakmos
📍Crete island, Aegean Sea
📍Gistova Dragon lake, Macedonia

Reel: @farawayfarers

Swim or kayak through the limestone cliffs of the Twin Lagoon, a must-visit destination for those traveling to Coron, Palawan, Philippines. It is called "twin" lagoon because it consists of two lagoons separated by a limestone cliff, with one lagoon on top of the other. The water in the inner lagoon is warm and clear, with a stunning turquoise color that makes it popular for swimming and snorkeling.

Reel: @travelifejournal

Take a dip in a series of seven saltwater lagoons located in the Atacama Desert of northern Chile. The Lagoons of Baltinache are known for their beautiful turquoise waters and unique geological formations. The high concentration of minerals in the water gives it a unique buoyancy that makes swimming in the lagoons a unique experience.

Reel: @everchanginghorizon

Watching the sun rise above the clouds at Haleakalā National Park is one of the most memorable experiences you could have. Haleakalā is a Hawaiian name that means “House of the Sun” and is an awesome place to watch the clear night sky and stars fade away as the sun lights up the sky and the earth.

Reel: @girlchill_sunset

Just 1 hour from Shanghai by train, Cherry Blossom Valley is a popular tourist destination, particularly in the spring when the cherry blossoms are in full bloom. The valley is named after the thousands of cherry blossom trees that cover the area and create a stunning display of pink and white flowers. The trees were originally planted in the 1980s by a group of Japanese experts who were invited to China to help with reforestation efforts. The best time to visit is typically in late March or early April. Get there early to beat the crowds!

Reel: @cyncynti

New Zealand is unbelievable. See it for yourself:

1. Fiordland National Park
2. A classic backcountry hut trip
3. Blue Pools walk
4. Hooker Lake
5. Milford Sound
6. Lake Pukaki

Reel: @kylekotajarvi

Surrounded by lush greenery, towering karst mountains, and the river flowing through, the Detian Waterfall is a popular tourist attraction and a symbol of the close relationship between China and Vietnam. It is the largest waterfall in Asia and the fourth largest cross-border waterfall in the world.

Reel: @sophoebelous

Escape to a serene and peaceful oasis away from the bustling city of Marrakech at Le Jardin Secret—a beautiful and historic garden where visitors can escape the noise and chaos and enjoy the beauty of nature. The garden was originally built in the 16th century and is home to many different species of plants, including exotic flowers, citrus trees, and palm trees.

Reel: @hypermiggzz

For a magical moment and bucket list travel experience, visit the end point of the annual monarch butterfly migration. Starting in August, the monarchs travel 2,800 miles south from Canada, making a temporary home amid the towering trees of the Monarch Butterfly Biosphere Reserve in Mexico, where the two most popular sanctuaries to view them are el Rosario in the state of Michoacan and Piedra Herrada in Estado de México. Standing in silence while thousands of delicate wings beat in unison is something you'll never forget.

Reel: @juliiathompson

There's just something beautiful about snow covered landscapes like this popular attraction in southwestern Utah. Known for its unique geology, @brycecanyonnps_gov consists of a series of natural amphitheaters, called "hoodoos," formed by erosion of the rock layers.

Photo: @nathanleeallen

As we experience a couple more weeks of winter, we can't help but dream of tropical destinations like Hawaii. The warm water, sunny skies, and consistent waves make it an ideal destination for surfers. Hawaii has a vibrant surf culture and community and is also a beautiful place to explore outside of the water, with lush green mountains, stunning beaches, and unique cultural experiences.

Reel: @christopherballadarez

1. @sequoiakingsnps, California
2. @canyonlandsnps, Utah
3. @olympic_nps, Washington
4. @whitesandsnps, New Mexico
5. Vermillion Cliffs National Monument, Arizona
6. Knik Glacier, Alaska

Reel: @nathanleeallen