JetBlue, Continental tops in satisfaction


JetBlue, Continental tops in satisfaction — Jet Blue, known for its swank seats and individual passenger televisions, ranks highest among low-cost carriers in customer satisfaction, says a survey being released Thursday. JetBlue received stellar numbers across the board, topping the ratings in all seven customer satisfaction categories. (AP)

Lift airline ban on lighters, TSA says
— The nation’s aviation security chief says Congress should lift a ban on passengers carrying lighters on airplanes because screeners are spending too much time looking for lighters instead of bombs. (USA Today)

Oil, gas prices rise ahead of 4th — Oil prices rose for the fifth-consecutive day Wednesday while retail gasoline prices edged higher ahead of the Fourth of July holiday as demand remained strong. (USA Today)

Floods cripple riverside areas in northeast — Swollen rivers spread muddy water through homes and streets across swaths of the northeastern United States with more storms forecast on Thursday as tens of thousands of people waited to go home. (Reuters)

New Orleans convention business trickles back
— Louisiana tourism officials on Wednesday heralded this week’s convention of the American Library Association as nothing less than the rebirth of New Orleans’s ailing tourism and convention industry. (Reuters)

Northwest adds new boarding line for high-end fliers — The next time you board a Northwest Airlines flight, there might be a new line at the gate for frequent fliers. Starting next week, frequent fliers and those paying top dollar for their seats can bypass the line of coach travelers to board the plane if they’ve missed their first boarding call. (USA Today)

Delta to give Delaware first commercial flights since 2000 — Delta Air Lines plans to start round-trip flights tomorrow between Wilmington’s New Castle County Airport and Atlanta for Delaware’s first commercial air service since 2000. (Philadelphia Inquirer)

Frequent flier programs change course — Twenty-five years since their debut, travelers and industry experts say the frequent-flier programs have flown far off course from their original purpose. Yet it’s doubtful the airlines will ever change from their present direction because the programs have turned into huge revenue producers on their own. (AP)

Providing in-flight Wi-Fi still a struggle — The once-furious race to offer in-flight Wi-Fi has slowed, and U.S. domestic travelers are still at least a year from surfing the Web at 35,000 feet. (USA Today)

Toronto island airline to press on — A new airline set to start operating out of Toronto’s city center island airport later this year announced its first route Tuesday, dismissing protests from opponents who say the carrier will cause excessive noise and should be denied permission to fly. (Reuters)

Online hotel booking may land you bed (bugs) and breakfast — New York City landlords landlords are pawning off apartments as hotel rooms to cash in on the city’s tourism boom. They are posting rooms on popular Internet travel sites, where the legitimacy of the advertisements are not always checked, officials say. (AP)

Carrie Charney, Christopher Elliott, John Frenaye, Charles Leocha, Marge Purnell, Valerie Schneider, Mary Staley, Stephanus Surjaputra, Richard Wong.