The Column That Gives The Global Picture

Bargain of the week: flights for £10 or less

Europe's biggest no-frills airline, Ryanair, is throwing its weight around. It is selling seats on all flights from Stansted to Charleroi in southern Belgium (about 40 miles from Brussels) in August and September for £9.99 each way – a challenge to BMI, British Airways and Virgin Express, which fly from Heathrow to the main airport in Brussels, Zaventem. Book by midnight on Monday through to qualify.

Ryanair is challenging Go on the new routes linking Dublin with Edinburgh and Glasgow. Every seat in September and October is being offered at £5 one-way. Go ( is selling at £10 one-way from 19 September, when services begin, until 18 October.

Warning of the week: last orders on US flights?

California Senator Dianne Feinstein has asked US airlines to limit the number of drinks served on domestic flights to two. At present, passengers may order as many as the cabin crew are prepared to serve, but Senator Feinstein says: "In view of the 5,000 'air rage' incidents each year, I believe it is time for the airline industry to set standards voluntarily, or else Congress may well step in."

Dr Todd Curtis, the founder of the website, is calling for prohibition in the cabin: "It would be simpler and more effective to have a total ban on the inflight consumption of alcohol."

Destination of the week: France, by bike

Anyone inspired by the Tour de France, which ends this weekend in Paris, can get a train to Folkestone and take advantage of the Eurotunnel Cycle Service (08705 35 35 35). A five-day return costs £31, bike included, to the terminal near Calais.

Once across in France, the local council in the Pas-de-Calais has created a network of bike trails. Call 00 33 3 21 10 34 60, or visit