Items tagged with 'Albany International Airport'

A look at airfare prices out of Albany

united airplane landing at ALB

How high? It depends on how you measure.

The Albany airport ranked #17 in the nation for highest average domestic roundtrip airfare among the top 100 busiest airports during the fourth quarter of 2013, according to numbers recently released by the federal government. The average fare out of ALB: $434.60. The national average was $381.05.

But, like most numbers, that average airfare figure only tells one part of the story. So let's take off with a few more numbers and see if we can get a better sense of how airfare from Albany compares...

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Scheduled for arrival at ALB: JetBlue

JetBlue airplane tailAnnounced today: JetBlue will begin service out of Albany International Airport in 2015. Chuck Schumer has been pushing for the airline to serve ALB, so he was chuffed about the announcement. Said the peripatetic Senator in a press release from his office:

"This should increase competition at the airport, increase the availability of flights to Albany International's most popular destinations, like Florida, and drive down prices for the average flyer. What's more, it will keep more residents in the area flying out of Albany, instead of traveling out-of-state for cheaper flights. It's a win across the board that will reap benefits for Albany International, JetBlue, and the region's tourism industry for years to come."

The two flights planned for the ALB schedule: Fort Lauderdale and Orlando. Here's JetBlue's current service map. Its slate of upstate-ish cities currently includes Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse, Newburgh, Westchester, and Burlington.

When word started spreading about JetBlue's impending arrival this morning, we noticed a bunch of people in our Twitter stream hailing the news. To which we ask, earnestly: Why?

We're kind of the thinking that most airline travel is pretty much like any other airline travel these days. Sure, there's some variation -- the Southwest people might be a bit funnier and that airline doesn't charge you for checking a bag. But on price, and many other aspects, there doesn't seem to be a lot of difference. So, aside from the increase in competition, what's the big deal? If you've flown JetBlue, please share. We're genuinely curious about what separates this airline from the others.

Elsewhere: A ranking of nine major carriers by the WSJ released in January pegged JetBlue at #5.

photo: Aaron Gustafson (cc) via Wikipedia

The airport, photographs, and free speech

Updated

You probably saw the video this week from ALB -- two people recording their effort to hand out flyers about opting out of the full body scan, an airport official asks them to stop, they say no, and an Albany County sheriff's deputy tells the airport official the two people are exercising their rights. The video has racked up more than 100,000 views on YouTube.

The airport released a statement saying its "concern -- as it always is -- was for the safety of the passengers and the public who were in the airport." [TU]

So, what exactly are a person's rights in this sort of situation?

Well, like most things, it's complicated.

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From the clouds, Air Force One

The gray, rainy weather made it hard to spot Air Force One as it approached ALB today. But YouTube user MusicalDarkHorse caught video of it just before it landed.

Yep, it's a large airplane.

There's another AF1 clip after the jump.

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LOL at ALB

LOL art exhibit at ALB composite

Perhaps not ROFLMAO, but definitely smile inducing.

No, the Joe Bruno bust isn't at Albany International right now. But there's other stuff to see -- and funnier.

If you're heading out of town, or delivering/picking someone up to/from ALB over the holidays, take a few minutes to stop up at the 3rd floor gallery to check out the LOL exhibit.

You might even want to just take a trip out to see it -- even if you're not going anywhere -- just for giggles.

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Where'd Joe go?

No Joe Bruno Bust Albany International Airport

It seems like something's missing...

Last week Bob over at Planet Albany noticed that the Joe Bruno bust that has watched over the observation area at the Albany International Airport was no longer on display.

Considering all the drama (if that's the word) surrounding Bruno over the last few years, the absence of the bust honoring him might make you wonder why it was missing.

So we asked.

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Getting there, directly

southwest jet elevating

Its direct flight to Atlanta may be "direct" -- not direct.

After seeing this week that Southwest is adding a direct flight from ALB to Atlanta, we were curious about how many places we (or you or anyone) could fly directly from the Albany International Airport -- and how much it costs (versus a non-direct flight). [Southwest] [TU]

We're now boarding with the answer...

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ALB screener says she was fired for being a witch (and a whistleblower)

Thumbnail image for albany airportFrom the couldn't-make-this-up file: msnbc.com reports that a woman who was fired from a job as a TSA screener at ALB in 2009 says she was given the boot, in part, because she's a witch:

She was in the top 10 percent in Albany at catching weapons on the X-ray machine. She passed her skills test on the first try. She caught a woman on her way to Vietnam with $30,000 in cash. And she didn't mind working with the passengers -- her training as a massage therapist kept her from being squeamish, as some officers were, about patting down elderly and special-needs passengers.
The assistant director told her he was investigating a threat of workplace violence. He said that her former mentor in on-the-job training, officer Mary Bagnoli, reported that she was afraid of Smith because she was a witch who practiced witchcraft. She accused Smith of following her on the highway one snowy evening after work and casting a spell on the heater of her car, causing it not to work. Well, actually, Bagnoli said she hadn't seen Smith's car, but she had seen Smith. "I thought to myself," Smith recalls, "what, did she see me flying on my broom?"

The woman says she does practice Wicca (and is reclaiming the word "witch").

As you might expect, there's more to the story -- including whistleblowing about alleged security problems, what sounds like less than-great management, and... uh... two black cats.

Farewell, Latham checkerboard water towers

Pair of Latham checkerboard towers.

They have a checkered past. And present. But no future.

By Akum Norder

Update: Colonie says the dismantling has been postponed until there's warmer weather. [Troy Record]
____

If you're driving through Latham this week, tip your cap to the checkerboard towers.

Demolition of Latham's landmark water towers is scheduled to start today.

The FAA has said the towers have to be removed because they're on the flight path of a runway at the Albany International Airport.

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Warm weather bang for your airfare buck

southwest jet elevating

To warmer climes?

The arrival of actual winter weather this week had us thinking about warmer places -- specifically, about places that are warm in February. Because it's right about that time of the year that we usually become officially sick of winter.

With that in mind, we curiously scanned Southwest's winter fare sale this week for ALB-to-(insert other place) specials. There were a lot of warm-weather options -- but which was the best non-winter value?

So, we did some quick math to determine which spots would get us the most degrees for our airfare dollar.

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From here to... someplace else

kayak explore screengrab

That one at the bottom is Puerto Rico.

Check it out: the travel website Kayak has an "explore" option. You tell it where you're at, how much you'd like to spend, the season you want to go -- and it tells you where you can fly.

Here's the result for flights from ALB this summer under $400. (That's the screengrab above.) You can also sort by activity, language and weather (we're filing this away for January).

There's something about seeing all the spots mapped out like that gives us a bit of wanderlust...

[via Kottke]

Earlier on AOA: Daydreaming of a long weekend

Plane spotting at ALB

Check it out: a site called NYC Aviation has put together a plane spotting guide for ALB...


View NYCAviation.com Albany International Airport ALB Plane Spotting Guide in a larger map

Here's a lot more detail and explanation -- including notes, pics and photo advice.

Earlier on AOA:
+ Air Force One landing at ALB
+ Watching the planes at ALB

@flyfromALB

icon flyfrom albWe've been following @flyfromALB on Twitter and it's kind of interesting. It's a feed of flight "deals" as detected by Fare Compare.

A few of the recent updates:

$196r/t Raleigh-Durham from Albany down 12%, [http://bit.ly/4HFQ1U]
$385r/t Mexico City from Albany, winter or spring down 29% [http://bit.ly/8DfHFW]
$675r/t Honolulu from Albany down 16%, [http://bit.ly/4tOrIb]
$937r/t Bangkok from Albany, winter or spring down 11% [http://bit.ly/8lJJP2]

After just a quick scan, the deals seem to match up fairly well with results from Kayak.

[via @alexisgrant]

Refusing the puffer

albany airportWriting at a blog called Homeland Security Watch, Deirdre Walker -- a retired police officer from Maryland -- describes what happens when she refused the "the puffer" at ALB's security checkpoint earlier this year:

When notified by the cheerful screener that I had been selected for additional screening (the screener's tone reminded my of the announcer who tells the contestant that she has just won a TV on the Price is Right), I stepped reluctantly toward the machine and asked her quietly whether I had the right to refuse the search. I did not want to become a spectacle, or have to rent a car and drive back to Maryland.
The screeners face dropped and she appeared stunned, as if my question had been received like a body-blow. She asked me to repeat what I said, and I repeated my inquiry regarding whether or not I had the right to refuse this search, especially since it was my understanding that the equipment did not work. She responded defensively, "It sounds an alarm!"

[via @ToddHeim]

On time, most of the time

southwest jet

A few interesting local bits from a Brookings Institution report out this week about air travel delays:

Arrivals
ALB was on pace for about 1.3 million arriving passengers this year. That's down more than 5 percent from last year and almost 6 percent from five years ago. But it's up 42 percent from 10 years ago.

On time
Arrivals at ALB were on pace this year to be on time 78.5 percent of the time. That ranks #54 among the top 100 metros. And it was just about even with the national average (78.9 percent)

Delays
The average time of delay for a late arrival was on track to be 54.2 minutes this year -- that ranks 37th best among the top 100 metros.

Brookings also figured out the top 10 air corridors linking to the Capital Region. That list is after the jump...

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Air Force One landing at ALB

air force one landing

Wave to the President!

Pete Casellini snapped this pic this morning as Air Force One landed at Albany International Airport.

(Many thanks, Pete!)

Update: Check out more photos of Air Force One by Paul and Amy...

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Out of This World at ALB

Chris Harvey

"Seven Columns of Commerce and Pleasure" by Chris Harvey

One of our favorites things about the Albany International Airport is the upstairs art gallery. We appreciate the fact that a place that's all about hustle and bustle has a space that's dedicated to pausing and thinking.

If you have some time during your next swing through ALB, the current exhibit is worth checking out.

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Southwest 30-60-90 sale

southwest jet

Up, up and away -- for cheap.

Southwest announced what looks like a pretty good fare special today: every city is on sale for the next 48 hours. One-way fares are $30, $60 or $90.

Of course, there are a handful of restrictions. You have to travel between September 9 and November 18. The sale doesn't include Friday and Sunday flights. And you have to pay fees and taxes on top of the fare.

We were curious about what kind of deals we could get out of ALB. A list -- with a few comparison prices -- is posted after the jump.

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That was a lot of rain, state Senate will meet on 4th, RPI disputes fire department accusations, Rudy Giuliani wants to motivate you, ALB says show up earlier

Yesterday's severe thunderstorms dropped more than three inches of rain in some places (the official NWS tally of 2.76 inches was a local record for July 1). Latham and Cohoes seemed to get the worst of it. There were reports of flooding all over the area. [TU] [NWS] [Fox23] [Twitter]

The state Senate held another of its "extraordinary" in-and-out sessions yesterday. The big issue of the day seemed to be the question of whether the Assembly would accept the bills "passed" by the Senate in Tuesday's V8-fueled session. It looks like the senators will be spending the Fourth of July at the Capitol -- David Paterson has ordered them into session every day through Monday. [TU] [Daily Politics]

Both Senate factions are expected to turn in per diem requests for the last two weeks today -- though whether they'll be paid is apparently up in the air. [NYDN]

Guilderland's supervisor says the town will be pulling its garbage business from the Albany landfill because of concerns about the facility's expansion into the Pine Bush. [TU]

RPI says that its public safety office called the Troy Fire Department just 32 seconds after the first report of a fire at one its chem labs this week -- not 12 minutes as the department has alleged. The TFD says RPI's delay created a more dangerous situation for firefighters. [Troy Record]

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Cities line up infrastructure projects, Schenectady cop suspected of catching Zzzz instead of crooks, Saratoga rec center project moves forward, delivery driver plows into strip mall

Local leaders say much of the federal stimulus money headed this way will be spent on infrastructure projects. Troy mayor Harry Tutunjian noted that much of the infrastructure in his city is 120-years-old. [Troy Record] [Saratogian] [TU]

The Daily Gazette reports that Schenectady's highest-paid police officer has been spending a chunk of each Tuesday's shift inside an apartment, possibly sleeping. The Gazette's observation was confirmed by department records from the GPS unit in the cop's car. Said Schenectady's police chief: "How dumb can you be? You know you have a GPS in your car. Why would anybody do that?" The officer in question made $168,921 last year -- that's about triple his base salary -- because of enormous amounts of overtime. [Daily Gazette] [TU]

An Albany police sergeant has been suspended pending the investigation into the possibly delayed arrest of an APD detective who allegedly had been driving while intoxicated. [TU]

The plane that crashed last week in Buffalo had been in Albany the day before. A witness says he saw a crew performing an engine test on the plane as it sat at the gate at ALB. [TU]

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Special election candidates could spend $4 million total, state worker says he gets $95k for nothing, new baggage scanners at airport, ice cream recall

One expert predicts each candidate in the special election to fill Kirsten Gillibrand's former House seat could end up spending $2 million on the race. The chairman of the Republican National Committee was in Albany yesterday to meet with Jim Tedisco about the race. Scott Murphy, the Democrats' candidate, was in DC earlier this week to meet with Nancy Pelosi and Kirsten Gillibrand. [Daily Gazette] [Troy Record]

The Siena Research Institute reports that consumer confidence in New York State was up a bit last month. The state's consumer confidence is a little lower than the national mark. [Daily Gazette] [Troy Record]

CDTA could get about $14 million over two years from the stimulus bill that's passed the House of Representatives. But the transit org says it's experiencing a "revenue crisis" and the stimulus money would only be a short-term help. [TU] [Daily Gazette]

A state worker with the State Insurance Fund says he's been relegated to a do-nothing $93,803-a-year job because he sued the Pataki Administration 10 years ago. The man says he sued because he was being discriminated against for being a Native American. [TU]

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A pair of very loyal mittens

collie fur mittens

The upside: these mittens come already trained.

Check out these mittens Flickr user Photos o' Randomness spotted in an exhibit at the Albany International Airport.

Does the sign in the case say "Collie Fur Mittens?" Yes. Yes, it does.

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It's cold, emergency landing at ALB, Soares calls for video of interrogations, Dalai Lama coming, state threatens bingo in Troy, Obama-Osama mistake strikes again

Note: the TU's site, in a stripped-down version, seems to be up again. Sort of.

Newsflash: it's cold. Temps this morning were below freezing zero and today's forecasted high is 16 degrees, with a wind-chill of as low as -9. [NWS]

ALB was closed for about an hour yesterday after a flight from Canada had to make an emergency landing. The Toronto-to-Manchester (NH) flight asked to make the emergency landing at ALB after it reported engine problems. The commuter plane's tires blew out during landing -- no one was injured. [Biz Review] [AP/Troy Record] [TU]

After this week's conviction of Jermayne Timmons, Albany County DA David Soares says he will push for the Albany Police Department to start videotaping interrogations. A key part of the Timmons case was a statement the APD extracted from the teen about the shooting of Kathina Thomas. APD chief James Tuffey says there's isn't money available to record the sessions, but Soares says the department has failed to take advantage of state money for the project. [CapNews9] [WNYT]

The Saratoga County sheriff's office says the driver who's accused of injuring a garbage man in Wilton after rear-ending a garbage truck was driving without a license. The garbage man was still in critical condition yesterday. [Saratogian] [Saratogian]

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Record voter turnout expected, ballet season shortened, flooding in Monument Square, airport getting new eateries

Boards of election around the region say they're expecting record voter turnout today. One of the Albany Count election commissioners says he expects between 75 and 88 percent of registered voters to cast a vote. [Daily Gazette] [Troy Record]

David Paterson says he's worried that if Barack Obama becomes president, he will ignore the needs of New York because he coasted to such an easy victory in the state. [AP/TU]

Paterson says borrowing money to cover the state's $12.5 billion project budget gap next year is "off the table." [Newsday]

An Albany man has pleaded guilty to torching two apartment buildings he owned this past summer in order to get the insurance money. But wait, there's more -- the guy is a former Trustco bank manager who needed the money to pay restitution on $40k he had stolen from the bank. [TU]

The New York City Ballet's residency at SPAC next summer will be two weeks long, instead of the usual three weeks. The shortened schedule is expected to save about $800,000 -- SPAC and the ballet lost a combined $2.3 million on the three week schedule last summer. Officials hope the shortened schedule will increase attendance at each performance. SPAC says another dance company might be brought in for what would have been the ballet's third week. [Daily Gazette] [TU] [Saratogian]

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Paterson warns Congress of "impending calamity," police say soph threatened school with data release, Stratton asks for raise, CDTA increasing swiper prices, fares up at ALB

David Paterson told Congress yesterday that New York needs federal assistance to "stave off an impending calamity." The Gov also invoked The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand. [NYT] [NYP]

Sales tax data indicates that local consumers are continuing to spend. Sales tax revenue during the first three quarters of this year for Albany, Schenectady and Saratoga counties was up 5 percent over the same period last year. [Daily Gazette]

The company hired by the state to test its new voting machines has been suspended by a federal oversight board. That won't affect things this year, but it could mean the old lever machines will hang on through 2009 and possibly into 2010. [TU]

State Police say the Shen sophomore who discovered unsecured employee data on a district server had uploaded the data to his own web account -- and issued vague demands to the district for its return. "He knew exactly what he was doing when he did it," a state police investigator said. [TU]

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Luther Forest chip fab a go, Conners and Soares squabble over audit, parking prices going up at airport, Sam the Bugler returned home

AMD says it is going ahead with the chip fab plant at Luther Forest. The chip company is spinning off a new company focused on manufacturing (with $6 billion from Abu Dhabi), and that company (called Foundry) will actually be building and operating the plant. The Luther Forest chip fab is not a completely done deal, though. AMD says a few things still need to happen for it to be official, including having New York State transfer its $1.2 billion in incentives to the new company. It looks like that will happen -- there's a press conference with David Paterson and the AMD people this afternoon. [NYT] [WSJ] [TU]

An audit released yesterday by Albany County comptroller Mike Conners concludes that about $6,000 is missing from a safe in DA David Soares' office and criticized the DA's office for spending seized money on things like parking and community anti-crime initiatives. (Though there appears to be a shifting standard for what's considered an allowed use of seized money.) Soares says the audit is politically motivated (he's up for re-election next month). Conners says he hoped to conclude the audit earlier this year, but received "little help" from Soares. [TU] [TU] [Troy Record]

The state legislators who represent Schenectady told the city council last night that it shouldn't look for more state aid this year because there just isn't any money. But getting rid of unfunded mandates might be an option. One idea: get the state to allow Schenectady to open a night court so it doesn't have to build more court space. [Daily Gazette]

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Candidates stretch for primaries, Albany High schedules still not totally fixed, new details in UAlbany roof stabbing, parking fees at airport might be going up, train runs over man

The Democratic candidates vying to replace Mike McNulty in Congress are stretching toward the de facto finish line -- tomorrow's primary. Phil Steck took out a home equity loan worth almost $100,000 to fund his campaign and Tracey Brooks has loaned her campaign $50,000. [Daily Gazette]

Waterford and Halfmoon are fighting with the EPA over how and when they should get water during the Hudson PCB clean-up. The federal agency is now threatening the towns with $32,500 a day in fines if they don't allow access for the construction of a back up water pipeline. The towns say they have no problem with the pipeline -- they just want a guarantee the pipeline will be ready when dredging starts. [TU] [Daily Gazette]

No one seems to know which way heating prices are headed this winter. That hasn't stopped state politicians from making them an issue. [Daily Gazette] [TU]

Albany High is scheduled to start its school year, again, today. It still hasn't completely fixed its scheduling problems, though. [TU]

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State workers nabbed for snooping, trucker protest rolling, how much college basketball is too much?, burglar might consider going barefoot next time

Three state workers -- all of them from around here -- have been accused of accessing confidential child abuse files and then using that information for personal purposes. [TU]

It looks like that big rig protest planned for later this month at the Capitol will go ahead now after the truckers worked out a deal with the Albany PD to provide them with an escort. The organizer of the protest say the APD are "good people." [TU]

As you might expect, the HR discussions in drug operations tend to get a little extreme. [Daily Gazette]

The MAAC -- that's Siena's conference -- is moving its 2009 basketball tournament to the TU Center after the conference couldn't work out details with the previously scheduled site. That means both the MAAC and America East (UAlbany's conference) will be holding their basketball tournaments in Albany on the same weekend. [Daily Gazette]

The Fourth of July fireworks in Watervliet have been canceled. City officials say the display cost too much -- and most of the people who watched them weren't city residents. [Troy Record]

A Dunkin Donuts, Subway or Bruegger's could be landing at ALB. [Business Review]

After muddy footprints led to his conviction for an earlier burglary, it looks like a guy in New Scotland tried to avoid the same fate on a second job by leaving his shoes outside the house. One problem: he forgot to take the shoes with him and police used DNA evidence from the footwear to nab him. [TU]

The Scoop

Ever wish you had a smart, savvy friend with the inside line on what's happening around the Capital Region? You know, the kind of stuff that makes your life just a little bit better? Yeah, we do, too. That's why we created All Over Albany. Find out more.

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