Christopher Elliott
Christopher Elliott

Position: © 2016, The Washington Post

Email: celliott@ngs.org

About: Christopher Elliott is the ombudsman for National Geographic Traveler magazine. You can read more travel tips on his blog, elliott.org

Aspiring to travel the world? Read this first

Nothing changes you like travel does. I know, because after 26 years of suburban stability, I recently sold my house, pulled up my stakes and hit the road. I’m a different person because of it. A...

DATE: July 23, 2017 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

Did your great fare suddenly disappear? Blame ‘dynamic pricing’

You probably know what Melanie Frazier felt like when she recently tried to book a flight from Portland, Maine, to Atlanta. She found a $257 fare – not a bad deal – but by the time she got around...

DATE: July 16, 2017 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

Bill to protect airline passengers doesn’t go far enough

Here we go again. Congress is trying to pass yet another Federal Aviation Administration reauthorization bill, a rare opportunity to help airline passengers by enacting meaningful consumer...

DATE: July 9, 2017 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

Will artificial intelligence improve travel?

The Terminator wants to be your next travel agent. New artificial intelligence technologies promise to make travel a little smarter. The latest entrant is Aeromexico’s new AI-based customer-service...

DATE: July 2, 2017 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

Beware of price increases when traveling solo

If you travel alone, you already know this: You pay more. Hotel rates, cruise-ticket prices and tours quote rates based on double occupancy. Go alone and you’ll pay a single supplement that can...

DATE: June 25, 2017 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

Can travelers avoid being given a digital pat-down?

When Shira Newman flies home from Tel Aviv this summer, she won’t be worried about long lines at the airport or short tempers on the plane. Instead, she’ll be concerned about her Samsung Galaxy S7...

DATE: June 18, 2017 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

You’ve never heard of these people, but they’ve changed the way you fly

Their advocacy results in big, embarrassing airline fines. They’ve helped create federal agencies that make air travel safer. And they’ve brought competition and transparency to the skies. They...

DATE: June 11, 2017 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

Rash of recent videos could affect airline regulation

It didn’t take the latest string of viral videos to convince Cynthia O’Leary. There was no need to see the near-riot at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport or the passengers brawling on...

DATE: June 4, 2017 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

With eco-travel’s increasing popularity, green claims merit skepticism

Green may not be the most fashionable color this spring, considering the recent policy shift in Washington on climate change. But it’s still the “in” thing for many travelers. A survey by the...

DATE: May 28, 2017 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

From passport cards to Global Entry, which trusted-traveler program is right for you?

Mike Shaw doesn’t want me to write about the U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s new Mobile Passport app. He used it on a recent trip from Beijing to Seattle, and it worked flawlessly. “I breezed...

DATE: May 21, 2017 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

What to do when you’re feeling low at high altitude

The moment Lia Saunders stepped off the bus from Huanchaco, Peru, to Huaraz last fall, it hit her. “The world was spinning and I felt like death,” she says. “It was like the worst hangover you can...

DATE: May 14, 2017 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

What all the recent United Airlines headlines may mean for travelers

Now that the dust has almost settled from United Airlines’ infamous passenger-expulsion incident, travelers are left with several important and largely unanswered questions about how this kerfuffle...

DATE: May 7, 2017 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter