Are you a cheatin’ customer?

A customer who cheats a company out of rightfully-earned revenue is the ultimate “man-bites-dog” story for consumer reporters. But what would you do if you could cheat — and get away with it? That’s the question I ask in this week’s Mint.com column. (Well, what would you do?)

Before getting to the rest of this week’s newsletter, I wanted to thank several folks for last week’s excellent trip to New York. I stayed at two terrific hotels, the Bryant Park Hotel and the New York Palace. I met with friends and colleagues — too many to mention in this newsletter — and was given a very warm welcome, despite the cold weather (well, cold for this Florida boy).

I’m also grateful to my underwriter ChinaTours.com, which not only provides affordable, private and fully customizable China tour packages — it also cares about you, the customer.

Also …

• Harry Kopy has a secret, and because of it, his cruise vacation is sunk. What does the cruise line owe him? Does it owe him anything? Maybe you know the answer.

• Disney promised her fireworks, but the pyrotechnics fizzled. Should it refund her premium room, which assured her a prime viewing spot — or is she out of luck? It’s your call.

• And I can’t not include a little something about the TSA. Here’s a little memo I wrote to our friends at the agency after they were unable to tell the difference between an insulin pump and a gun.

And finally, I’m coming to you this week from St. George Island, Fla. Please follow our adventure on Away is Home and track us on Facebook and Twitter to find out what we’re doing!

(Photo: Brother O’Mara/Flickr)

Christopher Elliott

Christopher Elliott is an author, journalist and consumer advocate. You can read more about him on his personal website or contact him at . Got a question or comment? You can post it on the new forum.

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