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Today’s Top Story

State Dept. issues plea for help with passport backlog
The State Department has issued an urgent plea to its diplomats worldwide to help clear the backlog of 3 million passport applications. (CNN)

What do you think? Which grade would you give airline customer service in 2007? Tell us what you think.

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What’s New On Tripso

Travelers’ hotel reviews: Are they helpful?
Online hotel reviews — we’ve all seen them. One guest complains that his oatmeal was cold, another praises the towels in the sauna. With a click of a mouse, some guy from Schenectady becomes an expert on hotels in Hamburg. Are these reviews really worth your while? Joel Widzer weighs in. (Joel Widzer)

What’s new in Tripso’s forums? Discuss the latest travel industry buzz in Tripso’s forums. Interact with hundreds of professionals in the travel industry. Registration is simple. The connections? Priceless.

More travel news

Airport fingerprint program expanding
A program being launched at 10 U.S. airports this year will expand existing identification checks for visitors, including requiring 10 digital fingerprints, but still operate under strict privacy rules, a senior U.S. official said Monday. (AP)

House wants Statue of Liberty crown open
The House is prodding parks officials to reopen the crown of the Statue of Liberty to the public – a step the government says is too dangerous. (AP)

Ohio offers Continental $16 million for expansion
Ohio has offered $16 million in incentives to Continental Airlines in an effort to land an expansion that would add flights and an estimated 700 jobs at Cleveland Hopkins International Airport. (AP)

Winds threaten to whip up Tahoe wildfire
Strong winds that stoked a turbulent wildfire near Lake Tahoe worried firefighters Wednesday, a day after a flare-up forced thousands of residents to flee. (AP)

NYC eateries ready for trans fat switch
No more trans fats with those french fries? No problem. The city’s ballyhooed ban on trans fat cooking oils in all New York restaurants – an idea that gave chefs indigestion when first proposed – seems to be going surprisingly smoothly. Across the city, most fast food chains say they’ve already made the switch days before the July 1 deadline, which is Sunday. (AP)

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Today’s Travel Blogs

Skybus applies for international flights
After generating nationwide buzz with its $10 cross-country fares, ultra low-cost carrier Skybus is apparently ready to test its formula on international flights. (Today in the Sky)

Don’t put your seat back up and get punched in the face
We can all sympathize with the rage you feel when the passenger in front reclines his seat so that your knees are trapped and your dinner tray stabs into your stomach. Fortunately, most of us don’t act on this rage. (Jaunted)

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