Security lines at some airports are long and require that passengers arrive even earlier than the airlines suggest in order to make their flights. Several years ago, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) began Trusted Traveler Programs, including TSA PreCheck, which allow passengers who have paid a fee and submitted to a background check to benefit from expedited screening. Travelers with TSA PreCheck do not have to remove laptop computers or liquids from their carry-ons, and are allowed to keep their shoes and sweaters on as they are screened.
Editor’s Note: We help a lot of travelers with a lot of different problems — everything from cell phone bills to computer troubles, and from filthy rentals to canceled flights. But our advocacy team has limits on the cases we’ll take. Here’s one.
After witnessing a horrific crime in front of her home, Holly Jackson needed to cancel the Spirit Airlines tickets she purchased through CheapOair.com. The online travel agency wouldn’t help her, and Spirit initially said it “couldn’t” help her. Now what?
When Milton Dortch and his wife planned their trip from Atlanta to New York in December 2015, Dortch booked their flights on Delta Air Lines, using his American Express SkyMiles credit card. On their day of travel a series of violent thunderstorms caused delays in the southeastern U.S., and Dortch arrived at his destination 10 hours late.
When Stephen Oualline and his daughter arrived at the gate in Kona, Hawaii, for their Alaska Airlines trip San Diego, they were told that the plane had already departed. After a rebooking and an unplanned overnight in Oakland, Calif., Oualline wanted the airline to reimburse him for the money he spent to get them home, but it refused. Now he wants us to help him — but can we?
On her way back from Sri Lanka, Caroline Martorano was detained in Abu Dhabi. She says she was detained for not being appropriately dressed, causing her to miss her connecting flight. But she places the blame for this detainment on American Airlines. Huh?
When Yogendra Sagar complained to Airbnb about two stays in India it gave him the cold shoulder. So he sued the CEO — and won. Now Sagar not only wants his money, he wants to report Airbnb’s CEO to the three credit bureaus — and he wants us to help him do it.
TAR Airlines canceled Lisa Fitzhugh’s flight between Merida and Oaxaca, Mexico. It promised her a flight refund, plus 25 percent for the inconvenience, but never delivered. Can we help her learn what happened to her refund?
Shelby Harding’s kindness led to big debit card problems — 250 of them to be exact.
She allowed a friend to use her debit card for a stay at a Super 8. The hotel and local police say the friend caused a commotion at the property and smoked in the room. Now Harding is being charged $250 to clean up this mess. And she would like our advocacy team to help get her money back.
But is she owed anything other than a life lesson that you don’t use your debit card to book a “friend’s” hotel room?
Clinton Crampton needs to change his flight a second time because of his father’s unexpected illness — almost a year after his original purchase. He wants to ask United Airlines for an exception to its rule and requests our help.
When French America Line cancels Frank Magarowicz’ second scheduled cruise, his story becomes one of an increasing number of refund complaints against the company and its sister company, Uncommon Journeys.
Abdul Mughal and his family needed a Schengen visa when they flew from Washington, D.C., to Tajikistan recently. They didn’t get one and had to pay another $6,000 to get home.
Driving in a new city frustrates many travelers, especially when navigating an unfamiliar, foreign location with strange rules. Larry Moyer learned just how frustrating when he made a big mistake while driving this Enterprise car rental in Florence. Now he is faced with heavy car rental fines and he wants to know if he must pay them.
Hurricane Irma interrupted Denise Johnson’s vacation to Virgin Gorda. She didn’t use the return portion of her Air Sunshine ticket and requested a refund. But the airline only offers flight credit and ignores further appeals.
Rita Simmersbach makes multiple flight changes to the ticket she bought through Condor Airlines. The airlines charges her multiple additional fees and she wants a refund. Can we help?
If you’ve ever been on an airplane, you’re familiar with the “fasten seatbelt” sign and repeated reminders from the flight crew to keep your seatbelts fastened.
If there was any doubt the airlines are putting profits above the comfort — and in many way, the safety — of passengers, they’ve been dispelled by recent news.
George Staby and his wife traveled from Arizona to New York and boarded a Silversea ship, expecting an enjoyable cruise through New England and Canada. But Tropical Storm Jose, which became one of the longest-lived Atlantic hurricanes in recorded history, had other plans for the Stabys.
Austrian Airlines overbooked Robert Raffanti’s flight from Venice to Vienna and asked for volunteers to take a later flight, promising compensation of 125 euros. Raffanti and his wife agreed, but the airline never loaded their gift cards. Can we help Raffanti, or will Austrian Airlines continue its infamous silent treatment of both its customers and with us?
After his first night in Atlanta, Greg Stafford just wanted to take a shower in the bathroom of his America’s Best Value Inn room. Moments after entering the bathroom, he discovered he was stuck — the door wouldn’t open. After he made multiple attempts to free himself, management finally came to his rescue — and charged him $1,000. Stafford admits he caused the hotel room damage, but believes the hotel should take responsibility for his predicament. He wants his money back and he asked for our advocacy team’s help.
When James Barbeau decided to use some of his wife’s Southwest Rapid Rewards miles, he visited the Southwest website and successfully transferred 40,000 miles from her account to his. He claims he was shocked to see a $400 charge appear on his credit card statement for the transfer and wants his money back.
Barbeau first appealed to Southwest Rapid Rewards for his refund, but the company refused, stating that “transferred funds are nonrefundable and nonreversible,” and that “the terms must be upheld in order to maintain the integrity of our program.”
Among the promises made by Sail In Greece Adventures is that the cruise will be “an unforgettable memory that will be kept forever.” But the memories that international travelers Chelsea Hudson and Samantha Weiss took away from the cruise are nothing like the ones in the company’s promotional video.
Terry Duryea had used FlyFirstClass.com to buy discounted first-class tickets before, so he didn’t hesitate to buy tickets through the site for a trip from San Francisco to Helsinki.
Maybe he should have hesitated.
At the end of his pilgrimage to San Sebastian, Spain, Adelino Alambra tried to check in for his flight home from Madrid to Baltimore. But British Airways told him that his ticket had already been used. Can we help him find out what happened to his ticket and get his money back?
I know a few people who are early for everything — there’s a good chance they were even born early. But the majority of us have been late for something in our lifetimes. When the thing that you’re late for is a flight, call the airline. Nathaniel Brewer didn’t — and it cost him.
A cruise to Cuba is a dream for many people, but there are specific rules that a company must follow and a special certification it needs to run a cruise. When Pamela Gillet booked her dream cruise to Cuba with Pearl Seas Cruises, she assumed the company had secured permission to run the trip it sold her.
Linda Gray and her partner booked a trip to China and Thailand with Sinorama, a Canada-based China tour operator, and had a lovely time — until they tried to return home.