Disaster repair scams target the most vulnerable. Here’s how to avoid them

No sooner had the ice thawed from this winter’s ferocious storms than the disaster repair scams appeared like spring weeds. They promised a speedy and painless recovery but delivered little — or nothing.
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Scam alert! In this hyperactive hurricane season, the worst may not be over

Harvey. Irma. Maria.

In a hyperactive hurricane season, the mere mention of these storms evokes fear, dread — and regret. Read more “Scam alert! In this hyperactive hurricane season, the worst may not be over”

Waterproof advice for making your home vacation-ready

If you’ve ever left for your summer vacation silently hoping your house would still be there — and in good working order — when you returned, you’re not alone. Read more “Waterproof advice for making your home vacation-ready”

There’s a hurricane coming, but Spirit Airlines has a hand out

With Hurricane Matthew bearing down on South Carolina, Brenda Williams has to cancel her vacation. Why won’t Spirit Airlines offer her a full refund?
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If they didn’t tell me about this $200 change fee, do I still have to pay it?

A few weeks ago, Chris Singh was scheduled to fly from Minneapolis to Norfolk, Va., on United Airlines to rent a vacation home. Unfortunately, Hurricane Joaquin paid the area a little visit, too.
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A decade after Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans is back

Ten years after Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans is back.
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My ticket credit is gone — can you help me get it back?

Razlomov/Shutterstock
Razlomov/Shutterstock

Velta Mahon’s airline ticket credit is gone and she says it’s Hotwire’s fault. Is there any hope of a refund?

Question: I need your help resolving a situation that I have with Hotwire. A little over a year ago I booked a flight from Baltimore to Orlando, but canceled because of a hurricane.

Before I canceled, I called Hotwire and told them that I was concerned about the weather and afraid to travel at that time. A representative told me to contact Allianz, the company through which I had insured my tickets.

An Allianz representative led me to believe that I might be able to receive a refund, and suggested I call Hotwire to cancel my ticket, which I did. When I requested a refund, Allianz denied me and referred me to Hotwire. Hotwire denied me and said I had a ticket credit, and referred me to the airline. The airline just referred me back to Hotwire. Read more “My ticket credit is gone — can you help me get it back?”

Help! I can’t make my cruise because of a hurricane

Aren’t you glad you’re not on a cruise?Question: We booked a cruise to Alaska on Norwegian Cruise Line last summer. NCL notified us that we would be sailing a day after our scheduled departure because they had to fix a propeller on the ship. This meant that the ship would not be stopping in Juneau for an originally scheduled excursion.

Then we had to cancel the cruise because of a hurricane that made it impossible to fly. All the airlines canceled their flights and we had no way of reaching Seattle. We had purchased a travel insurance policy through the cruise line.

Our airline gave us a full refund on our tickets, but NCL said we were only entitled to a 75 percent insurance credit that could be used for a future cruise. That isn’t in line with what other cruise lines did. For example, Princess offered a 75 percent credit through for passengers who had insurance and an additional 25 percent credit that could be used for a future cruise.
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Dodging a tsunami in Hawaii — again

What do you mean, everything will probably be alright,” Kari snapped at the person on the other end of the line.
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