Before I get into the terrific content I have lined up for this issue, a few words about money. Consumer advocacy doesn’t come cheap. Your support is critical to making this site run, and now more than ever, I need your help.
And as a way of saying “thank you” I’m offering my new ebook, 0-60 Travel Insurance to anyone who signs up as an individual underwriter. It’s the definitive guide to buying and using travel insurance, and if you’re taking a trip anywhere, you’ll want to read it first.
I hope you’ll consider becoming an underwriter. Without you, none of this would be possible.
This week I examine the three levels of scam over on Mint.com. I solve real-world problems, including a lost camera and a missing ticket refund. We have debates — oh, do we ever have debates! — on everything from stealing vouchers to hotel fees. And our On Your Side researchers have added new wiki categories so you can help yourself when you run into trouble. Plus, if you’ve ever wanted to be a travel blogger, you absolutely must catch my series on the subject.
Please visit our underwriter, TripInsurance.com, a travel insurance comparison website that provides savings of 40% or more on similar plans from other comparison sites. TripInsurance.com provides one of the easiest ways to buy travel insurance. With quotes sorted into good better and best coverage categories it is simple to compare travel insurance plans to find the right policy for your needs. Customer support is available 24/7 and claims can be filed online – right there on the site.
Question of the week: When you compare airline tickets online, do you find that some of the airlines that charge high fees are still cheaper than the “bags fly free” airlines — even after you’ve done all the math? I’m working on a story about the true cost of air travel, and I’d love to get your feedback.
Case dismissed: Airlines “steal” from us — why can’t we steal from them?
You don’t have to be a regular reader of this site to know that airlines are trying wring more ancillary fees from their customers. Or that customers are fighting back.
Ridiculous or not? Hotels eye airline-like rebooking fees
I’m always on the lookout for new fees, so when Katherine Walton emailed me about her recent stay at the Chateau Timberline, a hotel in Packwood, Wash., she had my attention.
Is this enough compensation? Rescued from Spirit’s fare club, but still unhappy
Spirit Airlines’ “$9 Fare Club” is probably one of the most controversial legal travel clubs in the country. Scratch that. It is the most controversial travel club in the country.
How to be a travel blogger
Note: The last two installments of this series will appear this afternoon and tomorrow morning on Elliott.org. Please be sure to tune in!
So you wanna be a travel blogger? You can do it — here’s how
You can launch a travel blog right now, in the time it takes to read this post.
Be a travel blogger now: Here are the tools of the trade
Now that you have found your topic, let’s get your blog up and running.
Here are the reporting resources you’ll need to become a successful travel blogger
OK, you have your topic and some of the basic tools. Now it’s time to find the content for your incredibly successful travel blog.
How to be a travel blogger: And now, a few words about money
Let’s talk about money.
Please visit our underwriter, Travel Insurance Review — Where you can get articles, reviews, and guides to help you find an insurance policy that will fit your individual travel needs. You can buy directly or use its comparison site to find a trusted and reputable travel insurance provider. Get more information..
The Three Levels of Scam — and How to Avoid Them
How quickly we are to invoke the “S” word when things don’t go our way. “S” — as in “scam.”
The Travel Troubleshooter: Airline won’t refund my ticket after my husband dies
After Ursula Maul’s husband passes away suddenly, she tries to get a refund for his nonrefundable ticket. But neither her online agency, nor her airline, will help her. Does she have any other options?
New on On Your Side: more appliance contacts!
We can’t leave well enough alone. Our researches have been hard at work adding to the appliance category. I’m happy to share the results today.
Got a problem with your electronics? These contacts might be helpful
Our subversive researchers have been at it. Today, they’ve wrapped up a new category: electronics.
The smarter consumer: How to find a manager’s email address
If you’re not getting the service you want, maybe you’re asking the wrong person.
What’s your problem? A black mark against Sony for losing my camera
Thomas Hill’s camera is lost in the mail. Not our fault, says Sony — take this up with Federal Express. Is Sony really off the hook?
Away is Home Please check out our family travel site, Away is Home and follow our year-long, cross-country adventure.
See you online! If you’re not following me on Facebook or Twitter, then you’re only catching half the conversation. Join me for a lively discussion about travel, customer service and anything else you might find interesting.
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