Consumer Traveler Newsletter – July 23, 2014

Photo provided by Monika Wisniewska, 70494163

Thank you for reading Consumer Traveler’s weekly newsletter. You can subscribe to our daily email newsletter here.

What you need to know this week

JoinUsStar_150Become a founding member of Travelers United, a new membership organization built on the principle of travelers helping travelers. For $20 a year, you will become part of an organization that is improving travel, assisting travelers in need and representing the general traveler with the powers that be in Washington, DC.

You are already enjoying some of the benefits of our work, including:

• The 24-hour rule which allows passengers to cancel or change problem airline tickets.
• The full-airfare rule, which requires the advertised price to be the price for which airline tickets can be purchased.
• Increased compensation, up to $1,300 when passengers are faced with denied boarding or bumping.
• Higher liability rules for lost and damaged luggage, up to $3,400 on domestic flights, plus a refund of baggage fees.
• Chris Elliott’s help desk — the country’s largest volunteer, consumer travel help desk.

Check us out at and join together with us to take positive and effective steps toward making travel better.

Action is needed! The anti-consumer Transparent Airfares Act must be defeated. This bill would allow airlines to hide the total cost of an airline ticket until the moment before the purchase. How can you help?  Two ways:
1. Sign a petition that asks Congress to keep truth-in-advertising laws in place!
2. Contact your representatives and ask them to vote against the Transparent Airfares Act of 2014. Go to and enter your zip code (upper right-hand side of screen). You will then view the representatives for your district. Click on their name and you’ll go to their home page. Leave a message on their Facebook account! Tweet them! Email them! Tell them to vote against this anti-consumer Act.

Please forward this information to a friend. Every traveler must know what the airlines are trying to do.

The latest from Consumer Traveler

Airport security is a farce
Have you noticed TSA Pre-Check lines getting longer and longer? There is a reason for that.

Customer-service outsourcing — coming to an airport near you
Some airlines are outsourcing customer service. Many of those who directly serve the public, the face of the airlines, do not work for airlines.

Bicycle safety when touring in US cities
Touring a city on a rental bicycle is a great way to see its sights. In Europe bicycling is safe and easy. In the US, it’s easy, but not as safe. Ned Levi discusses US bicycle safety issues.

TSA fees jump more than 100% today
Today TSA begins imposing higher security fees. One-way fees jump from $2.50 to $5.60 for a nonstop and more for round trips.

Let’s talk

We’re listening. The stories you see in this newsletter are just a starting point. We hope you’ll take a minute to leave a comment, whether you agree or disagree with something we’ve written. Let’s continue the conversation on Twitter or Facebook. And, of course, we’re always available by email. Here’s our address.

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Photo courtesy of Shutterstock, Monika Wisniewska.