What do you want for the holidays? If you’re Paulina Want, how about a little honesty?
If enough travelers stopped paying the travel industry’s infuriating surcharges and fees, would the unwanted add-ons simply disappear? Would extra charges for checked luggage, ticket change fees and mandatory hotel resort fees vanish into thin air?
Lisa Coris changes the name on her son’s passport, but now Ethiopian Airlines wants to charge her $300. Is that too much?
The travel industry seems to always have its hand out — sometimes literally.
After Reena Roshgadol’s daughter gets injured, she has to change her flight schedule. But then she finds out the airline might cancel her return ticket. Can she fix that without spending a lot of money on change fees?
It’s not your imagination. Your consumer rights are vanishing.
Not a day seems to go by that you don’t see news of another consumer regulation being dismantled, a law coming undone, an anti-consumer executive order being signed.
If you rent a car in Europe this summer, you might notice a few changes. Pay attention to them. They could be coming to America soon.
Hold on to your wallet. North America’s airlines will charge almost $11 billion in so-called a la carte fees for everything from seat reservations to luggage this year — a 24 percent increase over what was collected in 2014.
Just a few weeks before Dennis Main’s European riverboat cruise, a disc in his spine ruptured, confining him to a wheelchair. “My surgeon warned me that any long travel or excessive activity would be dangerous,” he says.
Airlines do it by quietly restricting the terms on their tickets. Cruise lines resort to good old-fashioned salesmanship. And the entire travel industry does it better, thanks to sophisticated software.
It’s called the “upsell” — and yes, it’s completely out of control.