Are FF miles a new currency? Should they be taxed?

During this last year, one of the biggest debates at DOT’s Advisory Committee for Aviation Consumer Protections, on which I serve, was whether frequent flier (FF) miles should be taxed. Are those miles now a taxable currency? Should they be? The question surfaced last year when the IRS Tax Court upheld taxes collected for a […]

You’ll never get that mileage upgrade! Here are six reasons why

For many travelers, frequent flier miles are less about free tickets than about getting out of the sardine-can seating in the back of the plane. Since airlines would of course prefer to sell those premium seats, booking in advance has historically made a big difference. Even if upgrades are sold out, or the carrier has not […]

Newsletter – March 29, 2015

Thank you for reading Consumer Traveler/Travelers United weekly newsletter. You can subscribe to our daily email newsletter here. A week in review: Airlines charging more for kids, Leocha on CNBC, Delta going the extra anti-consumer mile, United-Lufthansa nightmare, Big 3 airlines vs Gulf carriers As usual, the airlines are getting a lot of attention. Unfortunately, that usually […]

World’s happiest countries, US mobile passport app, donate unused miles

Get happy in the world’s happiest countries The United Nations declared March 20 as International Day of Happiness. According to a recent World Happiness Report, a lot of the happiest countries are in Scandinavia. The happiest of countries have a robust combination of higher life expectancy, gross domestic product per capita, social support, generosity, freedom […]

8 great tips for your 2015 European vacation

Have you planned a trip to Europe for 2015? Will you? You should! Low Cost. You may have heard about the recent Euro currency plunge. Now is the best time (financally) for US residents to travel to Europe in 11 years. Frequent Flyer Awards. I am currently researching flights to Berlin and will probably redeem 40,000 points. You can […]

Newsletter – February 22, 2015

Thank you for reading Consumer Traveler/Travelers United weekly newsletter. You can subscribe to our daily email newsletter here. A week in review: Resort fees, Earning FF points without flying, Flight cancellations, Most annoying travelers, TSA professionalism Here we go again. Get ready for an increase in resort fees. Chris Elliott explores how consumers at one time […]

8 great ways to earn frequent flyer points without flying

Believe it or not, flying is not the most common way to earn frequent flyer points. Following are some ways to earn frequent flyer points without stepping onto an airplane. NOTE: clicking on the images do not lead to offers or any website. I do NOT receive commissions, kick backs, or special considerations from the merchants or […]

What?! No Christmas gifts from my airline?

It’s the day after Christmas and as I surveyed the splay of Christmas wrapping, boxes, ribbons, bows, unwrapped socks and shirts, puzzles and gifted bottles of wine under the tree, I knew I had a lot for which to be thankful. But, there were no gifts from airlines this Christmas; I would have appreciated one […]