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Top 10 Most Outrageous Hotel Fees

Aug 13th, 2013 at 5:24PM: Airlines receive substantial criticism for their ever-increasing fees. While complaints about surprise fees associated with air travel are warranted and deserving of productive conversation, similarly unsuspected hotel fees are often overlooked. A recent New York Times piece highlighted the problem and stated that hotels in the United States are on track to earn $2.1 billion this year in fees...

Think Twice Before Buying In-Flight Snacks

Think Twice Before Buying In-Flight Snacks Jul 22nd, 2013 at 1:30PM: Hyougushi, Flickr As airlines continue to squeeze all the add-on fees they possibly can out of travelers, it isn't in-flight Wi-Fi or extra legroom that is bringing in the most money. The fastest-growing moneymaker for airlines comes from in-flight meal purchases, and passengers are eating the fees up. Shockingly, airlines have been known to charge up to 2,600 percent more than supermarkets for...

Spirit Airlines Ditches Toll-Free Customer Service Line

Spirit Airlines Ditches Toll-Free Customer Service Line May 8th, 2013 at 2:00PM: Famous for its no-frills approach (and for being the first airline to charge for carry-on bags), Spirit Airlines has decided it no longer needs a toll-free customer service line, the Los Angeles Times is reporting. In lieu of a 1-800 number, Spirit quietly replaced all its phone numbers with 801 area codes, which correspond with a geographic area in Utah. The change won't affect most mobile...

Galley Gossip: 10 Ways To Handle A Tight Connection

Galley Gossip: 10 Ways To Handle A Tight Connection May 3rd, 2013 at 11:00AM: 1. Book wisely. If you need to be somewhere really important, it's probably not a good idea to book your flights with less than an hour between them. Even an hour is pushing it. An hour and a half is good. Two hours, even better. Whatever you do, don't take the last flight out! Delays happen. So do cancelations. 2. Pay the extra fee. If you're the anxious type and travel is stressful, pay the...

Frontier Airlines To Charge More, Reward Less

Frontier Airlines To Charge More, Reward Less May 2nd, 2013 at 2:00PM: It came across as a simple tweet of information by Airfarewatchdog: "Frontier charging for carry-on bags if fare not bought on their site. Calls it an 'enhancement.'" The airfare experts at the site were noting a new policy from Frontier Airlines that goes into effect this summer. "Frontier continues to make it easier for customers flying with Frontier to pay only for the services they use,...

How To Deal With The Ridiculous New Airline Change Fees

How To Deal With The Ridiculous New Airline Change Fees Apr 27th, 2013 at 10:00AM: The big news in the travel industry this week was that United and US Airways raised the cost of changing tickets from $150 to $200. This means that if you need to change your ticket for any reason prior to departure, whether you got stuck in traffic on the way to the airport or your pet goldfish died, you're going to have to pay a little bit more. Gouging? Probably. Expected? Definitely. As...

Fees And Penalties Waived By Travel Companies: Nice Or Strategic Move?

Fees And Penalties Waived By Travel Companies: Nice Or Strategic Move? Dec 9th, 2012 at 4:00PM: Frequent travelers know that fees and penalties happen when we change plans. Booked elements of a travel plan, especially when discounted, often carry heavy charges to prevent changes. But when major disruptive events happen – situations beyond our control that force plans to be modified – travel companies often waive those fees. It seems like a logical, good business move to make....

Extra Travel Fees Here To Stay, Like It Or Not

Extra Travel Fees Here To Stay, Like It Or Not Nov 5th, 2012 at 1:00PM: Extra travel fees bring customization options that can make for a more pleasant air, hotel, land or sea experience. Also called "user fees," those who value the option they provide are relatively happy to pay. After all, these are not mandatory fees but options. Still, just the dollar amount makes experts wonder, "What's next?" Airline fees should add up to $36.1 billion in 2012, according...

$6.79 Breakfast Sandwich And Other Avoidable Travel Expenses

$6.79 Breakfast Sandwich And Other Avoidable Travel Expenses Oct 5th, 2012 at 12:00PM: Which airline does the best job, which hotel has the best perks and which cruise line has the best past-guest program are topics that few travelers agree on. But when it comes to extra travel fees, all seem to agree: they are something to be avoided if at all possible. Getting to the final cost of an airline ticket was made easy with recent truth in advertising rules put in place. But...

Airline Fees: You Get What You Pay For Or Weapons In Travel Class Warfare?

Airline Fees: You Get What You Pay For Or Weapons In Travel Class Warfare? Jun 29th, 2012 at 1:00PM: Last month, the media was abuzz over increased airline fees for pre-assigned seating, with many concerned that it would especially affect families who want to sit together for no additional cost. Even New York Senator Chuck Schumer got involved, asking airlines to waive fees for families traveling with children. Rather than look for victims or call airlines "anti-family," however, look at the...

Better Search, Blazing Fast, Tested

Better Search, Blazing Fast, Tested Apr 14th, 2012 at 4:00PM: Travel search engines commonly claim to produce the lowest prices or best selection. Some say they have the most accurate reviews or are quick at what they do. When we received a press release from hotel-finder Room 77 claiming "blazing fast" results, we put them to the test. On our 25.5 Mbps DSL line, it took just 3.5 seconds for Room 77 to deliver 573 results for an overnight stay in a...

Best Airlines For Traveling With Surfboards

Best Airlines For Traveling With Surfboards Apr 10th, 2012 at 9:00AM: Let's get real: baggage fees are a pain. It's no secret that commuters across the country despise having to pay $25 or $50 for the right to bring their underwear on vacation with them. So much so, in fact, that the very first article I ever penned for Gadling advised travelers on how to leave the plane with more bags than you boarded with. More than just commuters, however, you know who...

Airline passenger rights upgraded

Airline passenger rights upgraded Apr 21st, 2011 at 1:00PM: Flying the friendly skies got a bit more friendly this week as the Department of Transportation upgraded the Airline Passenger Bill Of Rights made the law of the land last year. As a result, fewer checked bags should be lost or damaged, fewer passengers should get bumped and fewer flights should get stuck on the tarmac. "Airline passengers have a right to be treated fairly," said...

Video: Asian animation studio mocks U.S. airline fees

Feb 22nd, 2011 at 2:30PM: Asian animation studio Next Media Animation took to YouTube to mock North American airlines for their insane fee structure - and managed to create a hilarious video as only they can make. In the clip, airport baggage handlers are displayed as football players and amenities are auctioned off inflight. Even the American flight attendant doesn't escape unharmed - they are presented as old,...

US Airways increases baggage fees

US Airways increases baggage fees Feb 10th, 2011 at 12:30PM: Here we go again. On the heels of greatly improved profits, US Airways has announced an increase of up to 80% on the charge for overweight bags. In addition to the base price for checked bags of $25 for the first bag and $35 for the second, the additional fees for overweight bags are increasing. Overweight bags that weigh between 50 and 70 pounds will see the price increase from $50 to $90....

Judge blocks Sabre, gives American Airlines a break

Judge blocks Sabre, gives American Airlines a break Jan 11th, 2011 at 8:00AM: I guess it would make sense for American Airlines to turn to litigation. After all, this approach worked well against Orbitz. Here's the situation: the battle between airlines and online travel agencies escalated from the beginning of November – with American's announcement that it would pull out of Orbitz – through the new year. The latest move was by global distribution system...

Five airline fees you haven't thought about (but they have!)

Five airline fees you haven't thought about (but they have!) Jan 10th, 2011 at 8:00AM: Over the past two years, the fees that airlines have figured out have been seemingly endless. Baggage and cancellations are just the tip of the iceberg. Now, passengers are stuck with a healthy dose of fee fatigue, but the good news is that there doesn't seem to be anything left for which to charge – except maybe access to the flotation devices in the event of an emergency. Well, don't...

Can travel booking sites endure the airline onslaught?

Can travel booking sites endure the airline onslaught? Jan 4th, 2011 at 12:00PM: American Airlines wanted out of Orbitz ... and then it was bounced by Expedia (preemptively, it seems). Delta wanted out of CheapOair ... and OneTravel ... and BookIt. Nobody knows what's next, but it appears that something is on the horizon, given the magnitude of change in the airline/online travel agency landscape over the past few weeks. I wrote a month ago that a "brand war" was brewing, a...

Airlines celebrate record profits with new fees

Airlines celebrate record profits with new fees Jan 4th, 2011 at 11:00AM: If you were running a business that just pulled in record profits after two years of business hell, what would you do? Some companies would show their customers some appreciation. Others would find new lines of business or products in which to invest. The airlines, however, seem poised to jack up their fees. Let's face it: ancillary fees have been good to the airlines. Paying extra for food,...

Is American Airlines making a "reckless rodeo bet"?

Is American Airlines making a Dec 24th, 2010 at 9:00AM: American Airlines' decision to pull out of Orbitz has triggered a war in the travel industry, as airlines and online travel agencies vie for ownership of the customer. The latest step was Expedia's decision to minimize the exposure of American Airline options in searches on its site, likely a play to reduce the risk of a move by American to pull out of Expedia, too. According to a statement by...

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