TED ALJIBE/AFP/Getty Images
TED ALJIBE/AFP/Getty Images

Baby Born on International Flight Gets 1 Million Airline Miles

TED ALJIBE/AFP/Getty Images
TED ALJIBE/AFP/Getty Images

A recent flight from Dubai, United Arab Emirates to Manila, Philippines took an unexpected turn when a pregnant woman went into labor about halfway through the nine-hour journey, 36,000 feet in the air, The Guardian reports. According to another passenger, the woman returned to her seat with baby Haven shortly after giving birth in the front of the plane. It was the first time a child has been born on a Cebu Pacific Air flight, and in celebration, the carrier awarded Haven and her family 1 million travel points.

The flight diverted to land in Hyderabad, India to get the mother and child—who arrived five weeks before her due date—medical attention. Luckily, there were two nurses among the passengers willing to assist with the birth, which took place in a “more spacious area in the front of the plane,” according to one passenger’s account. Two of the flight attendants with nursing training were on hand to help as well, and when the baby was born, several passengers with infants themselves offered clothes and other necessities to the new mom.

Missy Berberabe Umandal via Facebook

Pregnancies typically last somewhere between 37 and 43 weeks, and many airlines place restrictions on pregnant women traveling in their third trimester, often requiring a medical clearance for flights after the 28-week mark. Cebu Pacific requires a medical certificate from a physician clearing a pregnant woman for travel after the 34th week.

This isn't the first baby to be born mid-flight, but it's definitely a rarity. In the past, a few lucky babies born on airplanes have been awarded free flights for life, though giving birth in the sky can make nailing down your baby's nationality a little tricky.

It’s certainly not the easiest way to get airline rewards points, but little Haven will no doubt be a loyal Cebu Pacific customer in the future: Her 1 million points are worth almost $108,000.

[h/t The Guardian]

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Dallas/Fort Worth Airport Now Has Its Own ER
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If you thought massage chairs were the height of airport health perks, you’ll probably be impressed by a recent addition to Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) in Texas. The travel hub has opened what might be the country’s first airport emergency room, as Condé Nast Traveler reports. Located at the south entrance, the 8160-square-foot center has everything you’d expect from an urgent-care location, including an X-ray machine, a CT scanner, and a laboratory.

The ER is intended to serve dual functions. Because DFW is a massive operation, employing 65,000 workers, airport staff will be able to obtain speedy attention for ailments without having to leave the site. And because traffic at the airport is so high—more than 67 million travelers pass through each year—visitors will be able to address symptoms without delay. That’s especially useful if they’re experiencing respiratory-related issues or conditions frequently associated with air travel, like deep-vein thrombosis (DVT), a blood clot in the legs that can migrate to the upper body and cause a pulmonary embolism.

The airport told Condé Nast Traveler that it was only a matter of hours after opening that a passenger came to the ER complaining of chest pain. (He was treated and released.) Because the facility is located outside of security checkpoints, it’s also open to the general public.

The site’s operator, Code 3, previously opened an urgent-care center in the airport’s international terminal, as well as another urgent-care location in Las Vegas’s McCarran International Airport. The company eventually hopes to expand its ER practices to other high-profile and highly trafficked airports around the country.

[h/t Condé Nast Traveler]

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The Secret to a More Pleasant Flight? Urinals
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Even if you can deal with the lack of legroom, privacy, and decent meal options on airplanes, your patience may start to wear thin when it comes time to pee. Being stuck waiting in long bathroom lines on planes may feel like one of life's unavoidable annoyances, but according to WIRED, there's a way to make the experience more tolerable. The secret involves urinals and a bit of math.

At last month's Crystal Cabin Awards, a competition that recognizes innovation in aircraft interiors, Zodiac Aerospace introduced the Durinal, a two-urinal plane bathroom that takes the place of one toilet. Replacing a bathroom that serves all passengers with one that's made for only half the population may seem like a quick way to make the long-line problem worse, but there's some logic behind the proposed solution.

As Wouter Rogiest, a mathematician at Ghent University in Belgium, tells WIRED, gender-neutral bathroom lines are shortest when men have the option to head straight for a urinal. That's because it's quicker to use a urinal than a stall, and when men opt for the urinal, it frees up stalls for women. When he drew up an equation looking at hypothetical bathroom wait times at a concert, he found that a ratio of 14 toilets to eight urinals produced the most desirable wait times: one minute, 27 seconds for women and slightly under a minute for men. On a commercial plane, this ratio would come out to one or two Durinals per six conventional bathrooms.

Rogiest's concert equation isn't a perfect stand-in for airplane scenarios, so a more specific study would be needed before airlines could consider installing urinals. Unfortunately, if bathrooms with urinals do show up on airplanes, you can expect the spaces to be just as tight as they are now.

[h/t WIRED]

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