Temecula may be one of California’s best-known wine regions, but I’ll always remember it for something else: the fresh fruit we harvested on a recent visit to this out-of-the-way Southern California destination. That’s right, we saw the horde of tourists go one way, and we went in the other direction.
Many travel sites claim you can sometimes save money by booking two one-way airline tickets instead of a round-trip ticket. But is there a downside to this practice?
It was a random thought at the end of a recent column about unfriendly TSA agents. “I wonder if the rude agent is a reflection of an even ruder traveler,” mused David Kazarian, a pharmacist from Tampa.
It started a debate with a real purpose.
Stan Shopa is disappointed to miss his Qantas connection from Los Angeles to Melbourne. The airline rebooks him on a flight the next day — but downgrades his seat from premium economy to standard economy. So shouldn’t he be entitled to a price adjustment?
When Jennifer Tudor rented an apartment in a Brooklyn brownstone through Airbnb, she may not have understood what to expect. Unfortunately, this led to an unpleasant rental experience for her — and for the owner. Now she wants all her money back. Is this reasonable?
During her recent Caribbean cruise, Kathy Hoffarth purchased a $16,000 diamond in Jamaica. At the next port, she exchanged it for a larger, more expensive one. Now that she is home she doesn’t want that diamond, either, and she wants her money back. But is that possible?
Red-eye flights are hard enough. But when you’re heading to a hotel after a marathon trip, all you probably want to do is drop your bags and sleep, even if just for a few minutes. Will your room be available?
Want to start an argument? Tell your travel companion you won’t be arriving two hours before your flight.
Go on, try it. I’ll be right here.
Fellow travelers, it’s not too soon to start thinking about your 2018 itineraries.
Travel bans. Shootings. Viral passenger videos.
No one will forget the past year in travel. How could they? But what does it all mean for your 2018 trips?
Yarisa Smith knows she has a good travel agent.
“He’s made cruises and European trips special,” says Smith, a manufacturer’s representative from Dallas. “His itineraries and attention to detail have made every trip flawless. He’s even managed to successfully intervene when acts of God have waylaid my plans.”
Yet you might not know by looking at Clark Mitchell, who works for Dallas-based Strong Travel, whether he’s the real deal. Yes, his agency is cited as a source for its travel expertise by mainstream news outlets. It also prominently lists its membership in Virtuoso, an exclusive travel agency consortium.
But until now, there’s been no instantly recognized certification that says an agent is legit. That may be about to change.
Travelers make mistakes every day of the year. Believe me, I know. I’m one of them.
It’s that time of year when an already tight space on a plane, train or automobile seems even tighter, thanks to those extra holiday presents or layers of bulky winter clothing you’re wearing. Maybe it just feels worse because of the airspace intrusion of an oversized seatmate or a yapping emotional-support poodle.
When it comes to planning your holiday travel, sooner is better. Or is it?
Pamela Mazerski didn’t wait to call her travel insurance company until she had to file a claim.
“I’m weary of those entitled passengers who are continuously whining and complaining,” says Lisa Thomas, a veteran flight attendant based in Denver. “I feel like telling them, ‘Take some responsibility for your choices.’ ”
Thomas’s comments, made to me after a recent column about the rise of fees in the travel industry, triggered a fascinating debate. Many travelers say that they think fees are out of control, particularly in the airline business. The top 10 airlines collected more than $28 billion in revenue from extra fees and services last year, up from about $2 billion a decade ago, according to a recent study by the consulting firm IdeaWorks.
At the same time, many in the industry say that they think people are getting exactly what they paid for: a quality product at a ridiculously low price. Industry employees like Thomas suggest that travelers have become spoiled.
If you’re reading this, chances are something horrible has happened while you’re on vacation — a health scare, a disruption, even an unexpected death.
Maybe you’ve phoned your travel insurance company and the wheels are now in motion for a claim. And you’re wondering: What now?
David Kresl found out the hard way that Uber’s ride scheduling window is a guideline and not a guarantee. Now he wants the ride-sharing service to pay for his sister-in-law’s trip to St. Martin.
Nothing changes you like travel does. I know, because after 26 years of suburban stability, I recently sold my house, pulled up my stakes and hit the road. I’m a different person because of it.
When Rich Winer booked flights for himself and his wife on Lufthansa, he paid an extra $200 to reserve specific seats. Lufthansa confirmed in an email to Winer that he had reserved those seats.
Something about Nina Bucki’s story doesn’t quite add up. She’d planned a trip to Poland with her two daughters, but didn’t take it. She asked our help in getting a refund or credit for her unused airfares.
Geoffrey Small pays an extra $150 for an economy plus seat on El Al, only to find that nothing in that seat works. As compensation, El Al offers a $150 voucher. Is that sufficient compensation for Small’s malfunctioning seat?
Sometimes, travel isn’t fun. Jane Hatch’s last-minute winter flight from Baltimore to Milwaukee was for the worst reason of all.
So what if the motorcycle rumbles like a purring cougar with smoker’s voice? Anyone got a problem with that?
United Airlines flight 1031 was about 80 miles east of Cancún, on its way from Panama City’s Tocumen International Airport to Houston’s George Bush Intercontinental Airport, when it encountered turbulence earlier this summer — severe turbulence.
It wasn’t that long ago that travelers who wanted to read up before their trips were limited to paper guidebooks and novels featuring the destination.
Oregon’s cool and mysterious coast isn’t a what-you-see-is-what-you-get kind of place. Only repeated visits allow you to discover why it’s one of America’s most underrated destinations.