Will the real airfare “transparency” bill please stand up?

By | May 12th, 2014

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What you need to know this week

Where’s the real airfare transparency bill? Don’t look now, but the Senate just introduced its own airfare “transparency” law. Confused yet? I try to sort it out in my USA Today column. Your input is always welcome.

Unbelievable! The Change.org petition that asks Congress to keep truth-in-advertising laws in place has hit 50,000 signatures. If you haven’t added your name yet, please consider doing so now. (Note: Change.org may add you to its mailing list, I’ve learned, but it’s easy to unsubscribe.)

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Related story:   July 11, 2007

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This week’s burning question

Do you travel with a bike? I’m working on a story about the challenges of transporting a bike when you’re on vacation. Anyone out there try to bring a bike on a plane or bus recently? Do you have any tips for making it a smoother ride? (And avoiding paying big fees to the airline, cruise line or bus company?) Here’s my email address.

Bonus question: What should be included in your airfare? Airlines want to remove taxes from the base ticket prices, and are asking the government for permission to do so. What do you think? What should (and what should not) be included in the price of your airfare. Should seat reservations and “free” drinks be a part of your airfare? Or should it be just a seat on the plane?

The latest news from the Travelers United blog network

Away is Home. Our site about traveling together, we venture to the Dominican Republic, where Victor Block tells all about his adventure. And Ned Levi takes us to Tivoli Gardens for a very different kind of adventure. Please join us.

Consumer Traveler. On our travel policy site, Ned Levi grapples with the issue of passenger safety and comfort. And our policy guru Charlie Leocha asks: Why do airlines want to misrepresent the truth about their airfares?

Related story:   Are you a "me first" traveler?

Elliott. The advice site is buzzing. Should I mediate the case of JetBlue and the filled barf bag? Be sure to vote. Thinking of buying something in a “flash” sale? Here’s a news flash. This car rental claim was long – and very strange. And this week’s most-commented post: Can Sears save this Easter dinner?

Souvenirist. On our destination site, Dan Church mulls what to do when you get bumped from a flight. Stuart Gustafson explains why you shouldn’t check your luggage, even if it’s “free.” Plus, if you’re planning a summer vacation, here’s why Janice Hough thinks you should call a travel agent.

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  • Jeanne_in_NE

    Bonus question answer: On airlines where a seat reservation is required, then include the price of reserving one as part of the base fare. The last few times I’ve booked tickets for air fares I’ve found that I cannot reserve a less than sucky seat unless I pay extra. When the “Economy Comfort” seats are the only seats left on the plane to reserve, then they should be shown as part of the base fare. Even Southwest (which I just flew this past week) readily admits that “C” stands for “Center” – so if you don’t pay for that Early Bird fee, you get stuck in the middle and your family/loved ones/traveling companions don’t get to sit together.

    Just admit it, and stick it in there. Heck, market those middle seats as a “discount”, I don’t care, just don’t lie about what it really costs to get a seat on an airplane.

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