Travel Briefings

Freely Travel Briefing: Issue No.76

Photo by Chandan Chaurasia

When you cast your mind to airport employees, you might not immediately think of the firefighters. Nevertheless, they’re essential; and due to inadequate pay and dangerous staff shortages, they plan on striking soon – which is likely to cause flight disruption over the holiday season. 🙃 This week, as well as getting the lowdown on more potential airport chaos, we’ll be racking up the many delicious reasons why you should do a cooking class overseas, and will also head to a remote and beautiful corner of the Himalayas in Nepal to witness a family torn apart by climate change as the glaciers melt.

Airport Staff Strikes Set to Cause Holiday Delay

Photo by: Jay Wen


Across the country, airport firefighters have voted to take industrial action by striking across the upcoming holiday season, demanding better pay and more staff to address what they consider to be dangerous shortages. “At every major and regional airport across Australia,” said United Firefighters Union (UFU) Aviation Branch Secretary Wes Garrett, “we do not have enough aviation firefighters to provide the protection for air travellers that’s required by international aviation regulation. This presents a significant risk to the safety and welfare of both the travelling community and firefighters.” Yikes! The public will be given seven days’ notice before the strikes go ahead.

Read: Madeleine Achenza for

When Glaciers Go 🏔️

Image Credit: When Glaciers Go

Nobody in this intimate documentary uses the words “climate refugee”, but that’s exactly what they are.

“We are leaving Dhey because there is not enough water,” explains Nepali man Sangbo Gurung. More than a decade ago, the village’s glacial water source started disappearing, forcing the Gurung family to split up. Sangbo’s ageing parents stayed behind with their goats, while Sangbo and his partner Lhakpa moved down the mountain to Chambaleh, where water is more available and they can work selling apples. Nobody in this intimate short documentary uses the words “climate refugee”, but that’s exactly what they are. ‘When Glaciers Go’ explores the more personal impacts of what happens when a region’s rivers dry up. “It’s boring and more difficult to pass time now that there’s fewer people remaining,” says Dorjay, Sangbo’s father, of living in Dhey. “We feel emotionally unstable.”

Watch: When Glaciers Go

Why You Should Do a Cooking Class Overseas

Photo by: fedson_xx

Cooking classes let travellers experience the hyperlocal.

What’s the best way to learn about food while you’re travelling? No, it’s not nibbling everything in sight at the night markets, nor is it hitting the local grocery store to familiarise yourself with the shelf offerings – though both those activities are fabulous. Instead, it’s signing up for cooking classes! “Cooking classes let travellers experience the hyperlocal and learn things they may not be able to elsewhere,” writes Caterina Hrysomallis, who has made them her number-one hobby when she travels. “If the classes are done right, I'd expect that people would be even more interested in discovering the region and diving deeper into its culinary traditions.” Not only that, but attending a cooking class is a great way to make new pals when you’re on the road – plus you get to eat everything you create at the end! 😋

Read: Caterina Hrysomallis for SBS Food


A boatload of than 100 tourists and locals in Peru who were detained by Indigenous protestors have been safely released, with no one coming to any harm. The move happened over in Loreto – Peru’s largest Amazon region – and was an attempt by the Kukama people to force the government to act over constant oil spills in the Cuninico River. To date, hundreds of spills have threatened the very existence of dozens of Indigenous villages in the region.
More on rainforests: Brazil, Indonesia and the Democratic Republic of the Congo – aka the big three tropical rainforest nations – are currently in talks to form a strategic alliance in order to coordinate their efforts to halt deforestation and promote conservation. It has so far been nicknamed an “Opec for rainforests”, and here at Freely, we’re super excited about it! 🐒
Over to China, and the country’s relentless COVID restrictions show no sign of easing. On Saturday, health officials announced at a news conference that China would “unswervingly” stick to its zero-COVID policy, which includes quarantining, lockdowns and rigorous testing aimed at stopping the spread.

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