Elliott’s E-Mail: Help, a scammer wants to kill me, a report from Redmond, a missed cruise but no refund

Hello from Redmond, Ore., where our cameras are working overtime to capture this remarkable part of the country. I’ve enclosed a video we posted yesterday of horseback riding here at the Eagle Crest Resort, but as always, you can find more on our family travel blog.

On a more serious note, would a scammer every try to kill you? That’s what one reader is afraid of, and it’s a fear not one to be taken lightly. I try to help him in my weekly Mint.com column.

Thank you, Luggage Pros. Many thanks to our sponsors at Luggage Pros for supporting the consumer advocacy work on this site. At Luggage Pros, you can buy luggage, bags, briefcases, travel accessories and more — but best of all, you know they’ll stand behind their purchases because they believe in excellent customer service.

Elliott Advocacy is underwritten by MedjetAssist. Medjet is the premier global air-medical transport, travel security and crisis response membership program for travelers. With a MedjetAssist membership, if you become hospitalized more than 150 miles from home, we will get you from that unfamiliar hospital all the way home to the hospital you trust. All you ever pay is your membership fee. MedjetHorizon members add 24/7 personal security and crisis response benefits. Elliott.org readers enjoy discounted rates. Travel safer with  MedjetAssist.

Note: The comments on my site are now moderated. Here’s why I decided to make the switch.

On Elliott. She had to cancel her yoga retreat, but now the resort wants to charge her extra. Is that fair? I ask — and answer — the question in this week’s Travel Troubleshooter case. Plus, his travel insurance denied his claim after his mother-in-law died. Did it make the right call?

Also, one customer’s La-Z-Boy sofa smelled funny and now she wants a refund. Can she get one, or is she stuck with an olfactory disaster? And finally, is Eurostar being “unnecessarily greedy” by charging someone three times for a ticket? Join the lively debate here.

Elsewhere. In this Sunday’s Washington Post, I feature a passenger who missed her cruise because of an unfortunate, and entirely avoidable, paperwork problem. On the Huffington Post, I wonder if the TSA is becoming its own worst enemy. Congress seems to think so, but what’s your opinion? On Frommers, I ask: Whatever happened to the journey? (This was supposed to be my farewell column, so it’s a little deep.)

On Away is Home. Here’s our first report from Yellowstone National Park, where the kids all got their “junior ranger” designation. (Not an easy task!) And Aren reports on a hike to Friendship Tower in Deadwood, S.D.

Remember, you can follow me on Twitter or Facebook and you can track the Away is Home Twitter and Facebook site. I’ll see you out there.

Have an awesome week, everyone. Safe travels!