Christopher Elliott

Position: © 2016, The Washington Post


Fearing long lines at the airport? An app may help

Like many air travelers, Caitlin Ariens used to play it safe when she flew. She’d arrive at the airport two hours before departure to give herself enough time to check in and go through...

DATE: Jan. 4, 2014 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

What can you do when an airline offends you?

Nothing could have prepared Jeff White for the shock he got after printing his boarding pass for a recent Delta Air Lines flight from Pensacola, Fla., to Albany, N.Y., by way of Atlanta. Right...

DATE: Dec. 28, 2013 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

What did federal agencies do for travelers in 2013?

Ask travelers what the federal government did for them this year, and you’ll probably get a shrug, at best – or a rant about sequestration, national park closings and the Transportation Security...

DATE: Dec. 14, 2013 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

What’s enough time to make a flight connection?

When Mike Conrad bought an airline ticket from Washington, D.C., to Berlin, the last thing he considered was his connection in Frankfurt, Germany. But the flight, booked through United Airlines and...

DATE: Nov. 30, 2013 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

What’s that airline credit really worth?

It happened to Louise Andrew twice last month. She made reservations on the United Airlines website, tried to cancel them within 24 hours for a full refund and was told that the airline would be...

DATE: Nov. 16, 2013 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

Those deliberate flight no-shows have their reasons

Even though he couldn’t use his airline ticket, Eric Smith refused to cancel his reservation on a United Airlines flight from Omaha, Neb., to Baltimore. The reason? Smith, a technician at an...

DATE: Nov. 2, 2013 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

Pre-Check plan raises major privacy concerns

When the Transportation Security Administration’s Pre-Check formally launches sometime this fall, its trusted-traveler program already will have the enthusiastic endorsement of frequent travelers –...

DATE: Oct. 19, 2013 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

Don’t let travel insurance stick you with a bill

CSA Travel Protection’s website promises that its policyholders can “travel with confidence,” so when Norma Tarrow’s flight from New York to San Francisco was canceled after the recent Asiana...

DATE: Oct. 5, 2013 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

What to do when river cruise becomes bus tour

It was supposed to be the vacation of a lifetime for Pat and James Frost – a river cruise in France on the Viking Europe, from Avignon to Chalon-sur-Saone. The retired couple from Concord, Ohio,...

DATE: Sept. 28, 2013 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

Merger to slow online booking competition

Depending on whom you talk to, Travelocity’s unexpected announcement last month that it has reached a strategic marketing agreement with longtime rival Expedia will either create a dominant new...

DATE: Sept. 14, 2013 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

‘Act of God’ excuses can be challenged

It’s the time of year when the travel industry likes to play the weather card. Couldn’t check into your hotel? Blame it on that distant tornado. Flight canceled? It’s the hurricane’s fault, even...

DATE: Aug. 31, 2013 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

Now is the time to get real about real-time airfares

Sue Marcus was looking for a flight from Washington, D.C., to Tulsa, Okla. Instead, she found trouble. Every time the American Airlines website asked her to select a return flight, it came back...

DATE: Aug. 17, 2013 | COLUMN: The Travel Troubleshooter

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