Christopher Elliott

Position: © 2016, The Washington Post


Why airline refunds are always up in the air

Next time an airline promises you a refund, you might want to ask, “How much?” Gayle DeKellis forgot to do so when Aeroméxico downgraded her and her husband from business class to economy on a...

DATE: May 14, 2016 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

Beware: ‘New,’ ‘improved’ may give you less for more

This summer, beware of the word “new” and its sidekick, “improved.” The travel industry, flush with profits, is touting improvements to its products now, just as people begin to plan their summer...

DATE: May 7, 2016 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

In-flight Wi-Fi may be reason to pack a book

In-flight wireless Internet connections are almost universally available. They’re also almost universally unreliable, slow and expensive. Just ask Priscilla York, who tries, but often fails, to...

DATE: April 30, 2016 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

Avoid paying too much for airline tickets

The next time you try to buy an airline ticket with one stopover or more, you could pay twice as much as you expected. Three airlines – American, Delta and United – quietly changed how they price...

DATE: April 23, 2016 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

That perfect vacation rental may be a scam

Her “villa” in the Dominican Republic looked like a real find. It came with its own concierge and a private pool and was only steps away from a rugged Caribbean beach. Best of all, the price was...

DATE: April 15, 2016 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

New sharing economy lacks pricing clarity

If you thought comparison shopping was hard with traditional travel companies, just try the sharing economy. Lightly regulated companies such as Airbnb and Uber can make it as difficult as...

DATE: April 9, 2016 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

For travelers, when to tip can be confusing

Here’s a tip for your next trip: Get ready to tip more. Gratuities, once limited to restaurant servers, bellhops and concierges, are being solicited more than ever, and travelers are prime targets....

DATE: April 1, 2016 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

Wave of bills advocate for air travelers

It started with a proposed law to set minimum seat sizes on planes. Then a senator took on hotel resort fees, and another put airline surcharges in his crosshairs. And then the Senate released one...

DATE: March 26, 2016 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

On airplanes, restrooms are circling drain

At first, David Collins thought it was his imagination. The restroom on the Boeing 737-900 flying from Los Angeles to Atlanta seemed smaller than usual. “I had to take a deep breath to access the...

DATE: March 19, 2016 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

Air passengers bug each other in so many ways

Airline passengers are pushing each other’s buttons more than ever, mostly because there are more buttons than ever to push – literally. Consider the in-flight reading light, which seems like the...

DATE: March 11, 2016 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

Don’t be fooled by ‘resort fees’ at next hotel stay

If you’ve ever found a bargain on a hotel only to discover a few clicks later that the property charged a nonnegotiable “resort fee,” you’re not alone. Last year, 744 properties in the United...

DATE: March 5, 2016 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

Congress needs to protect rights of air travelers

Now that the dust has settled after Round 1 of the fight for the Federal Aviation Administration reauthorization bill, air travelers are wondering: What’s in it for us? Not much, unfortunately. The...

DATE: Feb. 27, 2016 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

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