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Consumers enjoyed what is at least a small win last week. In response to a petition brought by the Pennsylvania attorney general, Marriott International agreed not to misrepresent room rates, mandatory fees, or total price in its advertising. Basically, Marriott agreed not to engage in deceptively featuring low-ball room rates, with mandatory fees added later. Although this agreement at least nudges a major hotel away from an ongoing deceptive practice, its effect on the widespread industry practice is yet to be determined — and will likely be small.

An executive producer and co-creator of “Chicago Party Aunt,” Katie Rich described the raunchy Netflix animated series as an homage to her hometown, where she still resides. “I was in the middle of relocating to Los Angeles and then there was a global pandemic, so I'm currently in Chicago,” said Rich. Thanks to her travels with the Second City improv troupe, Rich said she feels at ease meeting strangers. “No matter who I meet, I know a little something about where they are from, even if it's from a place like Salmon, Idaho,” said Rich, who also was a writer for “Saturday Night Live.”

“Black Friday” is upon us, and despite the expansion of its scope in recent years, heavy focus will still be on electronic gear. And the advent of a “let's have a big sale” on just about everything means a chance for you to load up early on deal-priced electronic gifts for travelers on your list.

During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic last year, actress Ariana Ron Pedrique was busy filming “Ayar” in various parts of Los Angeles where she lives. “‘Ayar’ is a feature film about a Latina who returns home after an unsuccessful showbiz career in Vegas to reunite with her 5-year-old daughter,” she said. “Playing Ayar was special to me (and) peeling back all the layers of such an interesting and fully dimensional character was fascinating. She’s a strong-willed woman who is willing to face all her demons (and) hoping to amend the relationship with her daughter. This is also a story about survival, regret, forgiveness and rebirth.” “Ayar” will release in theaters on Nov. 26.

A few years back, some economist with nothing better to do calculated that frequent-flyer miles were the world's third or fourth largest currency. The total value of miles in circulation can only have increased since then. But calculating aggregate value doesn't really help anyone: The real test is how much miles are to you, individually. And that's a surprisingly complicated calculation.

“’Five More Minutes’ is a movie about hope and faith in the face of loss and grief,” said Nikki DeLoach, who stars in the Hallmark movie inspired by Scotty McCreery’s hit song of the same name. “I lost my dad three months ago, so while this movie was emotionally hard for me, it was very healing and a way to honor my dad. We filmed in Vancouver, which is one of my favorite cities. I have spent a great deal of time working in Canada and I always love it. The people are so kind and wonderful. And Vancouver is absolutely gorgeous.” “Five More Minutes” will premiere on Nov. 20 on the Hallmark Movies & Mysteries channel.

"Holiday travel up to pre-COVID -19 levels," shout some headlines, and at Las Vegas and many other visitor meccas, that claim seems to be true. But even if the numbers look to be near-pre-COVID levels, travel is not. You'll encounter COVID artifacts everywhere. Be ready.

Packed onto Madrid’s subway jammed with Spaniards heading for Plaza de Toros, I’m wondering how I’ll react to seeing another bullfight — my first in several years. At the last stop, everyone piles out and the escalator pumps us directly up to the looming facade of Madrid’s bullring — the biggest in Spain.

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