August 2009

Ginny Mahl is Travelocity’s vice president of sales and customer service — the woman behind the online travel agency’s vaunted Travelocity Guarantee. I asked Mahl about getting the best customer service from a travel Web site, and how her company is doing its part.


It has been about a year since we first heralded the beginnings of laptop searches by Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) officers. The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has just filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit to learn how the agency’s policy has impacted the civil liberties of travelers.


If you’re one of the 50 million Americans who suffer from some sort of allergy, there are ways to make your next cruise vacation easier on the sinuses. If you have allergies or asthma, planning before you cruise can help keep sneezes, sniffles, wheezing, and attacks under control while sailing the seas.


Miami Beach Fontainebleau is facing bankruptcy. Las Vegas serves up its restaurant week offerings. American Airlines abandons Sabre, kinda.


US Airways raised its baggage fees yesterday, setting off what’s sure to be another round of me-toos from its competitors. Luggage fees are almost pure profit, and because there’s almost no pushback from passengers, carriers are getting away with these new surcharges.


A Canadian man was pepper sprayed because he wouldn’t turn his car off at the border when order to by a border guard. He wanted the guard to say please. The guard spayed him. Finnland has talking trashcans…what will they think of next. Finally, a Hawaiian hotel used trash to measure spending.


Priceline has just released their list of the Top 50 Destinations for Labor Day 2009. This is compilation based on actual bookings through That makes this list different from surveys that focus on future plans. This survey is based on future bookings of tens of thousands of travelers.


We’re barely into back-to-school season and already the worrisome stories are circulating. A USA Today story recently estimated as many as half the U.S. may end up infected with H1N1 aka “swine” flu.


Even though Kim Ryan’s airline just went out of business, her online travel agent assures her she’ll still be able to fly to Hawaii for her honeymoon. But that doesn’t happen. She’s forced to buy a new ticket and spend an extra night on the island, and now the travel agency is dragging its feet on a refund. Can this honeymoon be saved?


American Airlines has decided to retire its A300 jets after 21 years of service.

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