Meet Winter Olympic bronze medalist Billy Morgan, Britain's most groundbreaking snowboarder
Airbnb will be 10 years old in August, and during its brief life the San Francisco accommodation platform has grown to be valued at $30bn. Now the firm has unveiled a range of updates that seem to move Airbnb well beyond its original concept and on to the turf of rivals. Until now, Airbnb has offered three categories of accommodation: “Shared Space”, which could be the original concept of an airbed in someone’s living room, “Private Room”, which means you’ll have the host around but a degree of seclusion, and “Entire Home” – increasingly an apartment which may be let professionally by a business.
Rail passengers who like to plan and book train journeys well ahead face unwelcome surprises for the remainder of the year: they may pay more than they need, or discover that their scheduled service is cancelled. Network Rail normally publishes its schedules for engineering work more than 12 weeks ahead, allowing train operators to finalise their timetables and start selling Advance tickets. Some train operators aim to sell tickets up to 24 weeks in advance.
An emotional support dog accompanying a passenger on a Southwest Airlines flight had to be removed after injuring a child. The incident took place prior to take-off on Wednesday 21 February, aboard flight 1904 from Phoenix to Portland, Oregon. Delta Air Lines announced it was cracking down on the use of such animals in January, after a sharp rise in on-board incidents, including urination, defecation, biting and mauling.
IAG, the parent company of British Airways, has reported “a very good full year performance” – with even better results predicted for 2018 at current fuel prices and exchange rates. The airline group, which also includes Aer Lingus, Iberia, Level and Vueling, has reported an operating profit of €3,015m (£2,655m) before exceptional items for 2017. The figure is 18.9 per cent higher than 2017.
“Welcome to paradise!” says the naked, middle-aged woman sitting beside me, grinning as she sinks deeper into the almost-too-hot spring water pool at Hotel Shiragiku in the Japanese city of Beppu. A Londoner uninitiated with onsen culture, I’m seemingly the only one of the dozen naked women in this hot spring bath to feel even a modicum of awkwardness at being in the nude with strangers. Having endured in Japan for thousands of years, onsens are much older than swimsuits and such clothing is thought to contaminate the spring water heated by the Earth’s crust.
A team of Chinese researchers has claimed to have designed a hypersonic jet that could travel at 6,000km/h, five times faster than the speed of sound. The team from the Chinese Academy of Sciences said the plane would be able to transport passengers and cargo from Beijing to New York in two hours – the journey currently takes an average of 13 and a half hours. Cui Kai, who headed up the research, published a paper on the new design in this month’s Physics, Mechanics and Astronomy journal, in which he said: “It will take only a couple of hours to travel from Beijing to New York at hypersonic speed”.