What does a certain travel-related term mean or what's the proper name for something you can describe?

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33
votes
6answers
25k views

What's the difference between embassies and consulates?

Today Mitt Romney called Benghazi the capital of Libya (it's Tripoli) and apparently mixed up consulates and embassies. I thought it'd be a handy question to have on here, for those sorting out visas ...
26
votes
3answers
16k views

What does “SSSS” on my boarding pass mean?

When I checked in for my American Airlines flight from Costa Rica back to the States, I noticed that my boarding pass had "SSSS" printed across the top left corner. Nobody else in my party had this ...
21
votes
2answers
2k views

What's the name for the “blocking” stickers used on car headlights?

I'll be driving my car from Belgium to the UK, with plans to then drive around the country. Like most cars in the European mainland, my car's headlights/headlamps are slightly adjusted to the right ...
20
votes
5answers
7k views

What is the difference between “Country of Issue” and “Country of Citizenship” of a passport?

On multiple occasions I have seen forms where it needs to be stated what the Country of Issue and what the Country of Citizenship is. What is the difference between the two, if your passport is issued ...
17
votes
1answer
5k views

How does “Fuel Dumping” work?

Recently, I saw a lot of blog post, forum posts etc on Fuel Dumping. For me it seemed like you can book a flight with high fuel charges, and then add another unrelated leg to the flight that you not ...
16
votes
2answers
2k views

What does “MO” mean after the name of a US city?

There are some places in US, that contain "MO" in their names. For example, Columbia, MO; Kirkwood, MO; Saint Louis, MO. So, what does MO mean?
16
votes
1answer
1k views

What does the (+1) mean in flight search engines?

In Skyscanner results, when I click on details, it shows the arrival time, then (+1), but it doesn't do this for return time. What does (+1) mean? I thought it might mean up to an hour delay, but I ...
15
votes
3answers
7k views

What does a technical stop mean in air travel?

When I look at my flight itinerary, it says that the flight includes a technical stop. What does that mean compared to a layover?
14
votes
4answers
2k views

What's the difference between a direct and a non-stop flight?

In a comment to one of my question, a user mentioned that there is a difference between a direct and a non-stop flight. So what is this difference?
14
votes
4answers
8k views

In the context of air travel, are layovers different to stopovers?

In a recent question somebody asked about a layover without mentioning how long the stop would be, thus implying it might perhaps be understood whether layover generally refers to a stop not requiring ...
14
votes
2answers
1k views

Why is there a 'secret carrier' option for a flight?

When searching for a flight on kayak.com (not for me, I don't fly business), it shows a "Secret Carrier" option. What gives? Why are they unable to tell us even the code-share partner? What if you ...
13
votes
9answers
1k views

Is Vatican City considered a country?

I have a life-long goal of seeing at least 50 countries before I die. I'm behind but I figure I would see most of them over the next 20 years as I get closer to retirement and make my fortune. :-) ...
13
votes
1answer
392 views

What are the “short names” sometimes used by flight attendants?

What are the weird names flight attendants use sometimes, which seem to mix numbers and letters? Edit: The original question was Why do some flight attendants have “call signs”?, but MeNoTalk's ...
13
votes
2answers
749 views

What is Rule 240 in Air Travel?

This morning I was a little bit surfing on travel blog sites, and then I read this hint: Know about Rule 240. If your flight is delayed or you get bumped from a flight, ask the ticketing agent ...
12
votes
3answers
1k views

Does the term “middle east” cover a certain set of countries? Could I be misunderstood when using it?

This, to me strange, topic has come up a few times lately, usually about Iran not being a middle eastern country. In fact it just came up in the chat room but pretty regularly when chatting to people ...
12
votes
2answers
2k views

What does “early bird rate” mean in hotel reservations?

Maybe it's too obvious, but I'm not a native English speaker.
12
votes
2answers
241 views

What exactly are the differences between a National Park and a National Forest?

In the United States, most big national parks are surrounded by national forests. I know that you can do "dispersed camping" in the National Forest, but not the National Park, but other than that, ...
12
votes
2answers
15k views

What does “copy of itinerary” mean when applying for a Schengen visa?

The Italian consulate website says under requirements for a Schengen visa: Applicants for short term visas (up to 90 days) must also present an itinerary of their trip. What does this ...
11
votes
2answers
952 views

Which countries are “Muslim countries”?

In the question about drinking beer in Dubai it arose that the term "Muslim country" can be seen as one where the laws of the country are affected by the rules of the religion (like Dubai), whereas ...
11
votes
4answers
2k views

What is overbooking (of flights), and why do airlines all seem to do it?

I know that they want to "fill every seat." If you take this LITERALLY, then you'd want to overbook, because of the statistical percentage of "no shows." That, of course, leads to "bumping" when more ...
11
votes
5answers
731 views

What exactly does “nights” means when you book? Is it number of night you are going to sleep, or simply days you are going to stay?

For example, suppose that I'm going to travel London and will arrive at 10am, 1st December. And will stay a week, means will leave 10am, 8th December. Technically it's 7 nights, but also 8 days. ...
11
votes
2answers
2k views

What does it mean when a flight is delayed due to a “tail swap”, if anything?

My flight was delayed due to a "tail swap" at the destination airport (the airport I will be flying into). Does that mean anything specific? If so, what is it?
11
votes
1answer
449 views

Why does an airline include “seamen” in its list of special requests?

I was trying to book my ticket on-line with PIA when under the special request section I saw the request for a "seaman". What would be your best guess as to what this service entails? This site ...
11
votes
1answer
390 views

What does Flight Pending Government Approval mean?

When searching on Orbitz for round-trip flights, I see a number of results with this note highlighted in yellow when expanding Flight Details: "This flight is pending government approval." What does ...
10
votes
2answers
881 views

In Japan, what is a “Philippine pub”?

In Japan, what is a "Philippine pub" (フィリピンパブ)? I tried googling for "Philippine pub Japan", but didn't have much luck. The Japanese edition of Wikipedia has a description, but Google Translate ...
10
votes
3answers
312 views

What's the travel insurance definition of a war zone?

Some travel insurance companies have clauses stating that they won't insure travel to a war zone. What's their definition of this? The best I could find was Wiki's list of ongoing military ...
9
votes
1answer
2k views

What is the difference between customs and immigration?

Maybe this is a question that should be asked at english.se in stead. I am just wondering if you can talk about "going through customs", when referring to all processes involved in ...
9
votes
2answers
2k views

What exactly is a open-jaw flight?

Recently, I was looking for a flight from A to B and then a flight back from C to A. Using my English dictionary, I found that this is called an open-jaw flight. However, several native English ...
9
votes
3answers
2k views

What is ticket reconfirmation and why does it exist?

I have never personally had to reconfirm the ticket, but have read that in some case you can lose a place on a flight, even if you paid for it! Where does the idea of ticket reconfirmation comes ...
9
votes
1answer
7k views

What exactly is a “No Objection Certificate” (NOC)?

In researching a potential trip in Pakistan on Wikivoyage I came across this term which is not well explained: The visitor should be aware of the ever changing rules regarding sensitive areas and ...
8
votes
2answers
6k views

Miles & More: What is a booking class?

I'm member of the frequent flyer program Miles & More. Now I wanted to request additional miles for a flight during summer 2011 when I wasn't yet a member. To fill out the online form, I have to ...
8
votes
2answers
537 views

What is “cattle call seating policy”?

In a Facebook thread about Amtrak trains I saw a user comment complaining about Amtraks cattle call seating policy. What is this?
8
votes
3answers
1k views

Why does my boarding pass read “APIS OK”

I flew from Turkey to France on a direct flight. When I checked in, I saw the boarding pass given to me read "APIS OK". I thought APIS was a program of US immigration, mostly for passengers to the ...
8
votes
1answer
7k views

What's a “Redress Control Number”?

When booking a flight reservation recently, I noted it had a non-compulsory field asking for a Redress Control Number for your reservation. I gather this is somewhat related to the No Fly list, but ...
7
votes
3answers
2k views

What's a “trip kitty”?

On some organized tour operator's sites, I see tour prices listed with a +amount labelled as "kitty" or "trip kitty" like this one. What is a "trip kitty"?
7
votes
2answers
389 views

Is there a official classification for turbulence?

This winter I was on a flight in Europe during a huge winter storm. That's why the pilot announced for the flight that we will have some medium turbulence during the flight. However, it wasn't really ...
7
votes
3answers
320 views

What is usually an American breakfast outside of the US?

A number of hotels outside of the US offer something they call an American Breakfast. What does that usually include in terms of food and beverage? I have seen this choice offered in a few countries ...
7
votes
2answers
419 views

What is a global number?

If you look at GoSim's rates (or the rates of other international sim cards), you can see that it has both a US and a global number. What is a global number? Is it the number you dial internationally ...
7
votes
1answer
119 views

What is a Toronto Traffic Commission code 299 or 506?

I heard this on the TTC (Toronto's subway system) public address system: "506 Eglinton." What is this about? Any enlightened folks out there, who may have an answer?
7
votes
1answer
327 views

What's “border surfing”?

In the comments of a recent answer, which had mentioned the detention of hikers by Iran, one of the people referred to "border surfing". What is border surfing? Edit: I'd rather not have to link to ...
6
votes
3answers
799 views

Is there an ontology of geographical entities to visit?

I am a traveler of the kind that likes to log. I have this "ridiculous" race with a friend to visit as many country as possible, but we start running into issues about what is called a country. The ...
6
votes
4answers
260 views

What does it mean to be in the fast lane?

I don't think I've ever understood this. I travel frequently across the State of California by car. And I often take the highway to get to many places. One thing I don't understand is how fast ...
6
votes
1answer
306 views

How is a hightop different to a camper van?

I just wanna hire a campervan to travel from Sydney to Cairns. I have had a look at a hire company and they have a lot of campervans but I don't know what the difference is between high tops and ...
6
votes
2answers
339 views

What does the expression 'Prepayment' mean in hotel booking terms?

I've made a booking for a weekend in Holland online via ebookers. When I completed the transaction and looked at the final receipt, it said "prepayment required" ... does that mean I need to pay at ...
6
votes
1answer
344 views

What is an open ticket?

When speaking of an airline ticket, I have heard the term open ticket which has to do with dates not being fixed I believe. What exactly is an open ticket? How do you get an actual flight from one? ...
6
votes
1answer
304 views

What is the meaning of the expiration date on a Delta voucher?

My parents were issued vouchers for a specific dollar amount towards future travel on Delta as compensation for volunteering to switch to a different flight in an overbook situation. The vouchers have ...
6
votes
1answer
383 views

What is the meaning of “Marine Fares” regarding airline baggage?

The terms of an airline company regarding their checked baggage rules refers to two concepts: Piece and weight. A section of the "weight" concept mentions "Marine Fares of Economy Class". What does ...
6
votes
1answer
111 views

Where to find out more about “ライダーハウス” / “riders' houses” in Japan?

I just learned of a very interesting kind of minimal budget accommodation in Japan principally for people on bicycle and perhaps motorbike tours called "ライダーハウス" - "riders' houses". There is an ...
6
votes
1answer
194 views

What are transit visas?

What is the purpose of a transit visa, under what circumstances is is it required, and what happens when an individual arrives at an airport without one?
6
votes
1answer
4k views

STATI Schengen : What does it mean

I am going to Europe for my honeymoon. My entry and exit is from Rome. My Visa says Stati Schengen, Type C. I understand Type C is for short term travel. Can anyone help me understand Stati means ? ...