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Roundup: Three pieces of hot travel news

In the air: Going once, going twice … bumped!

Delta Air Lines has turned being bumped from an overbooked flight into a game. On flights within the United States, passengers checking in online or at kiosks can now specify how much money they would want for giving up their seat. Of course, those making the lowest bids get bumped first. Payouts are in Delta Dollars, good for future flights. The system is voluntary. Anyone bumped involuntarily will still get government-required compensation, often $400 to $800.

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In outer space: Millionaires: More space trips on sale

Looking for an out-of-this-world vacation destination? Virginia-based Space Adventures will offer three seats on Russia's Soyuz spacecraft bound for the International Space Station starting in 2013. Each flight will last about 10 days. Interest in space trips has soared since Cirque du Soleil founder Guy Laliberté became Canada's first space tourist in 2009, the company says. Pricing, still to be determined, will be higher than the $35-million for past trips. Space Adventures has arranged eight trips to the space station since 2001.

On the seas: In case of pirates, please sit on floor

Passengers aboard a British cruise ship in the Indian Ocean got a routine briefing on what to do if attacked by pirates. A day later, they put those lessons into practice. During a formal dinner aboard the Spirit of Adventure, a speedboat carrying pirates was spotted within close range. The 350 guests and 200 crew members were asked to sit on the main-lounge floor for 45 minutes until the threatening vessel retreated to a safe distance.

Sources: blog.delta.com; Space Adventures, The Press Association

Special to The Globe and Mail

ouglas McArthur, l

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