Lee Weikert and her husband want to plan a spring break trip during a pandemic. They’d like to visit Phoenix in March for Cactus League spring training. But like many Americans, they are afraid the virus will throw them a curveball.
Instead of flying, the Weikerts intend to make the 12-hour drive from Diamond Springs in northern California. They hope to be vaccinated beforehand. And they most definitely will have a Plan B.
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Maybe you’re old enough to remember a time when the customer was always right. Back then, employees were friendly “yes” men and women who served you with a smile. Deals were made with a handshake. You paid less, but you felt as if you got more. You didn’t need to be the world’s smartest consumer because businesses treated you honestly and fairly.
But today, people don’t trust companies to do the right thing — probably because companies often don’t do the right thing. Businesses assume the customer is wrong unless proven otherwise. And the reason no one is screaming to high heaven about this is that the decline of trust and customer service happened slowly.
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Are you ready for a long vacation? Jeffrey Blaustein and his wife, Marilyn, are.
Their next getaway is a five-week road trip from Amherst, Mass., to St. George Island off Florida’s Panhandle. That’s half an eternity compared with the average number of vacation days — nine per year — that Americans use for travel, according to the latest figures from the U.S. Travel Association.
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If you’re reading this, then something has probably gone wrong with your trip. Maybe your airline canceled your flight or your hotel lost your reservation. It’s happening a lot during the pandemic. And you need to know how to solve your travel problem.
I’m here to help. I write the nationally syndicated Travel Troubleshooter column, and over more than two decades of consumer advocacy, I’ve helped resolve tens of thousands of trips that went wrong. (By the way, I also pen a column called Problem Solved, which helps all other consumer complaints.)
Read more “How to solve any travel problem now”
I’ve spent my entire career helping people avoid travel trouble. As the Washington Post’s Navigator columnist, I know where the land mines are buried.
Here are the most common travel problems — and solutions:
- I’ll show you how to get a refund for an airline ticket.
- I’ll help you book the best room at any hotel. If you can’t, I can help you get an upgrade at no extra expense.
- I’ll make sure you avoid the worst car rental problem ever: a bogus damage bill.
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