Thank you for reading Elliott’s Email, my weekly newsletter. I’m very grateful for your support – without you, none of the advocacy work I do here would be possible. Don’t forget, you can subscribe to my daily email newsletter, too. I also have a special friends-only newsletter with more personal updates. You can sign up for it here.
What you need to know this week
Help me help you. You rely on this site for for consumer advice and advocacy every day. I rely on you to help support the work I do. If you’re an individual, please consider becoming an underwriter. If you’re a company, I invite you to join Allianz, Airport Parking Reservations, Luggage Pros, Refund.me, Squaremouth.com and ShamaTravel.com as an organization that takes a brave stand for your customer. Here are the details.
Are you a “me first” traveler? There are lots of them out there this summer. I tell you why in this week’s USA Today column. Please don’t forget to leave a comment and share this important column with your friends.
And the best budget food bloggers are … Here are the winners. Thanks for voting!
Become the world’s smartest traveler. Buy my new book, How To Be The World’s Smartest Traveler, and you’ll never have another bad trip. (And if you do, you know where to find me, right?)
Thank you, Squaremouth.com. Squaremouth helps travelers easily and instantly compare all the major travel insurance plans. To ensure customer satisfaction, only companies that meet squaremouth.com’s strict requirements make it into the system. You can save over 70 percent on your next policy at Squaremouth.We’re very grateful for Squaremouth’s support of this site and newsletter.
This week’s burning questions
The answer is “no” – but why? I’m working on a story about travel companies that tell their customers “no” – you can’t have a refund, you can’t get an upgrade, you can’t have an exception to the rules. Have you been turned down by a company recently, and if so, did you ask why? Were you satisfied with the explanation? Here’s my email address.
What to do when a travel company hurts you? I’m researching a story about airlines, hotels and car rental companies that inadvertently cause damage to their customers — from minor issues, such as broken luggage, to major problems, such as the slippery bathtub that leads to a broken arm. Do you find that companies are prepared for the claims and are compassionate when dealing with customers — or not? Have you noticed anything new or different in the way in which companies try to protect themselves from damage claims by customers? Email me, please.
The latest news from Elliott
New videos! I have a series of new clips from my YouTube channel. I answer questions like, should I participate in a travel loyalty program, what to do if you lose your luggage (and how to keep it from getting lost in the first place), how to pack smarter before your next trip, and I offer a few tips on whether to check your bag or carry it on the plane.
Should I send these Rube Goldberg ticket cases to the recycler?
My head is spinning after reading Amy Zimmerman’s complaint about Aeroplan, Turkish Air and Swiss.
When you’re traveling, a picture can be worth a thousand dollars
You don’t have to be an expert on photographic evidence to take snapshots of your rental car before you drive […]
Two cheers for all those airline mergers
When I think about the benefits of airline mergers, I’m reminded of Karen Griffin’s story.
Mom died, but US Airways won’t refund my fee
When Patricia Clay’s mother dies unexpectedly, US Airways promises to “consider” a refund of her change fees. Why won’t it
I’m listening. The stories you see in this newsletter are just a starting point. I hope you’ll take a minute to leave a comment, whether you agree or disagree with something I’ve written. Let’s continue the conversation on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn or Google. I’m listening. And of course, I’m also here if you need me. Here’s my email address.