When is the best time to book your vacation?

When’s the right time to book your next vacation? At the peak of travel-planning season, that’s a common question. This is the time of year when everything from holiday trips to spring-break cruises are being pulled together. But the best answer — besides a noncommittal “it depends” — usually is “as soon as possible.”

Because of the hurricane, my flight was canceled — twice. Why can’t I get a refund?

When Brenda Alvarez’s flights to Costa Rica are canceled because of Hurricane Irma, she tries to secure a refund from American Airlines but it only offers 10 percent of the original cost of her flights. She wants to know if we can help her get more.

This traveler says that he doesn’t understand trip insurance so he didn’t buy it. Now he needs it.

When Solomon Gizaw purchases his air tickets for a trip to Africa, he doesn’t buy travel insurance. Now he has to cancel his trip for medical reasons, but he doesn’t want to pay a change fee. Can our advocates help him get it waived?

Another lost honeymoon. Who is to blame here?

Jason Clements and his new wife planned the perfect honeymoon in Ireland, including tickets from Phoenix to Dublin via Philadelphia on American Airlines and British Airways, purchased through the online travel site CheapOair (a brand of Fareportal). They even purchased trip protection insurance. But they didn’t get to take the trip – or receive a refund for their airfares.

Online travel agencies: bad, and getting worse

There’s bad news for anyone who is considering booking a trip online: the latest American Customer Satisfaction Index from the University of Michigan finds customer satisfaction has fallen to an all-time low. The online travel industry’s aggregate scored slipped from 76 to 75 last year, a drop of 1.3 percent. It’s the lowest reading since the ACSI began tracking online travel agencies in 2002.

A closer look at the best and worst airlines of 2007

Here’s an important footnote to the airline industry’s year from hell. A closer look at the Transportation Department’s 2007 report card shows some carriers were likelier to lose your luggage, deny you boarding, get you to your destination late and provoke a written complaint. And some airlines were above it all.

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